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  • Hearing the Children
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Hearing the Children


The papers of the 2003 Interdisciplinary Conference at Dartington Hall

Paperback i

Book printed softcover

The Conference assembled a uniquely qualified group of contributors, drawn from the professions most closely involved in the resolution of child welfare problems. This book brings together their papers and offers both theoretical background and practical experience relating to the participation of children in family proceedings.
The book presents the latest thinking on:

  • Child attachment theory and its implications in practice
  • Communication with children
  • Protection of children from minority ethnic, mixed heritage and refugee families
  • Participation and representation of children in proceedings.

See all Dartington Books
"contains a series of excellent papers from some of the country`s leading experts. It is a valuable resource for all professionals involved in childrens cases"
New Law Journal

"complex concepts in an admirably clear and direct way ... contains much valuable material which is likely to assist practitioners from a range of professional backgrounds"

Adoption and Fostering
Dartington Hall Conference, 12–14 September 2001

The Interdisciplinary Committee of the President of the Family Division organised its final conference at Dartington in Devon before the advent of the Family Justice Council. True to the record achieved by the organisers in their earlier conferences, it was memorable. It provided a valuable opportunity to look at the increasingly important issue of hearing the child in family proceedings and, with the help of highly respected experts in their fields, to explore the many complexities which hearing children involves.

The conference was particularly well timed since it was held shortly after the publication of the Department for Education and Skills’ Green Paper, Every Child Matters (previously known as Children at Risk). There was a fascinating interchange of ideas between the judiciary at every level and a wide variety of professionals who are deeply involved in child care. At a crucial and possibly defining moment in the history of child legislation the delegates to the conference had an unusually good opportunity to make a valuable contribution to the moulding of future arrangements for children. The papers presented to the conference and the discussions ought to form part of the wider consultation on the DfES initiatives.

I am delighted that the conference rapporteur Justine Cadbury has collated the conference material and that this publication can inform a wider audience as a new Children Bill comes before Parliament.

Dame Elizabeth Butler-Sloss,
President of the Family Division

Edited by The Rt Hon Lord Justice Thorpe and Justine Cadbury

with a Foreword by The Rt Hon Dame Elizabeth Butler-Sloss DBE,
President of the Family Division

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