Interview 1 – Father and daughter
32 years without seeing her father from the age of three was criminal. There was no cogent reason given other than the mother did not wish to the child to see her father. This was enough for the court to rule in the mother’s favour. Existence of a Legal Presumption of contact would have put an end to this and ended the misery for both father and daughter. We undertook a father search in order to trace the father.
Interview 2 – Man with son and daughter
I helped this man as a Mackenzie Friend and produced his statement for court at the point where he was applying for leave to appeal his no contact order. I made it clear in his statement that “there was no cogent reason given for the father’s no contact with his children.
The barrister acting for his wife went in with both feet demanding a no contact order. The judge stopped him in his tracks with two simple questions – what cogent reasons do you have for no contact and for how long do you think this should last, 6 months, 6 years? The barrister was stopped dead in his tracks and the father was given leave to appeal.
The rest of his experience and that of his children was like a nightmare as you will hear in the film. The father was informed by a specialist that his children would carry this experience for the rest of their lives. Existence of a Legal Presumption of Contact would have stopped all this.
Interview 3 – Father with wife who brutalised her children both verbally and physically
As can be heard in the interview all doors were closed to him from the school, social services, police, cafcass officer and the court. It was criminal that the father could do nothing for his children who were subjected to years of physical and mental abuse by their mother because organisations who were meant to help just ignored him. An open court would have gone a long way to prevent this scandal.
This man approached me in 1998, which was my first case of domestic abuse. As more and more men came forward with domestic abuse issues, I set up a pilot line and PO Box number in my home to look into the extent of domestic abuse towards men and their children as well as offering support to my callers.