Judgments made in the family courts can affect families forever, including placing children in care or for adoption. Child Contact Services play a crucial role in making and recording the observations that are used by the Family Courts in making decisions that have lifelong implications for children and young people.

After decades of calls for greater scrutiny of the family courts, at the end of January, journalists gained access to report proceedings, in a landmark pilot scheme. Three court centres in Leeds, Carlisle, and Cardiff allowed accredited journalists to report cases for the first time, providing the families involved remained anonymous.

This is a cautious approach to making the Family Courts more transparent and we at NACCC look forward to seeing how this develops, as long as this is always in the best interests of the children at the centre of these cases.

A BBC Correspondent, Sanchia Berg, spent several weeks in Leeds Family Court attending hearings. the BBC Radio 4 program “Today” has featured a series of her reports, highlighting some of the issues that are usually hidden, including a mother’s ‘remarkable turnaround’ to win back her baby.

“Today” presenter Martha Kearney, also spoke to the judge who spearheaded the pilot, Justice Lieven.

The Podcast can be downloaded with the button below, or accessed directly from the BBC website by clicking here.

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