As the Cornerstone Community Alliance, we do not claim to be experts. But as a collective of individuals we have an incredibly broad scope of knowledge and experience across numerous fields of expertise that the Family Justice System covers.
And as such we know that lobbying for reform for just one component of the Family Justice System would be futile. Why? The analogy I always use is that of a puzzle. The Family Justice System has numerous services, government bodies such as Cafcass, Child Maintenance Service, Children Social Services, etc. In my mind these various components represent to me the pieces of a puzzle.
The whole puzzle is wrong. Imagine if you will that we successfully changed one piece of the puzzle. The piece is now better, but it will not fit back in the puzzle. That is because the whole puzzle is wrong. In order for this new and improved puzzle piece to fit we would need to change it’s surrounding pieces. And that process would be needed for each piece in the puzzle.
So, as the pieces in a puzzle are inextricably linked, so to are the numerous institutions, services etc that make up the Family Justice System.
Do we all need to know the innermost workings of the Family Justice System to know that it does not currently serve the best interests of the affected children? Do we all agree that the lack of protection is wrong? Yes.
Children are adversely affected by some of these services, some by others, some by all. So where is the equality is only lobbying for partial reform.
This is where the fitting together of the puzzle pieces takes the shape of us lobbying for nothing less than total reform.