Sir James Munby and the Transparency Project

Ok, so Sir James has retired as pres of the Family Division.  His job is being taken by Sir Andrew McFarlane.   What can/should we say about this?

Well, the only thing I know about either really is as to what they have done or said regarding PA.  Both judges are superb, qua judges.  If you read their judgements, I have never seen either of them put a foot wrong.  I am pretty sure this is because I have not read enough, as we all make mistakes...

But what I am interested in too is whether they actually DO anything.  Here is the text of a comment I made to the Transparency Project on the subject.  You will not see it on their site and I suspect this is because my IP has been banned.  This is not uncommon, and probably happens because I like to criticise lawyers.  Although the Transparency Project are trying to get more transparency in our courts, though, they are all still lawyers, so they probably don't like me.  Good job I don't care.  I will keep referring people to them though because i think they are doing a fine job (or at least their telos is admirable), notwithstanding that they are lawyers - I guess no-one's perfect.  The other reason is that I am all grown up and don't mind different views and criticism.

Here is the comment (good job I saved it first...):

"I don't want to go too off-topic, but in 2004 Sir James was complaining about 'flabby judicial responses'.  In 2015, 1.2% of court orders were enforced.  This was all of course on his 'watch'.  Everything I have ever seen from Sir James has been sensible, but I am not necessarily convinced that his aspirations have been followed through.

For the topic we are concerned with at UKAP, (Parental Alienation), I find it, at the very least, disconcerting, that judges know all about it, and do nothing.  The judiciary persist in thinking of it as 'American twaddle', false allegations go unpunished, and recalcitrant alienators eschew the court process with impunity.

We need judges to be robust.  Most are cowards.  This is not our opinion, it has been made explicit to judges, face-to-face by experts in this field.

If we truly wish to get these cases right, judges simply need to do their job.  If judges were more like Mrs Justice Parker in re H, PA could be brought under control.  At the moment, alienating parents know that all they have to do is to make a few false allegations (for the allegation is enough), and then simply refuse to engage with the process.  The courts just stand by and do nothing (with notable exceptions from Parker J, Peter Jackson, Michael Keehan, HH Judge Lochrane, Stephen Wildblood and HH Judge Gordon-Saker...)"


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