Key findings from the survey were:
- Almost half of respondents have not seen their child for more than six months.
- 1 in 10 have not seen their child for more than 5 years.
- 58% have had their child arrangement orders breached, most multiple times.
- 80% have experienced adverse health impacts.
- 55% have suffered serious financial impact.
- 16 respondents had contemplated or attempted suicide.
Jan James, CEO of Good Egg Safety CIC, said:
“We challenge anyone to read this report and not feel deeply moved by it. It is the worst social issue we have ever encountered. The harmful parental behaviours identified exposed a clear pattern of psychological abuse and coercive control.
“It is imperative this brutal form of family violence – where children are effectively used as weapons against one of their parents – be included within our new Domestic Abuse Bill.”
Examples of abuse included:
- Repeated denigration and devaluing of the victim mothers and fathers.
- Isolating children from their mothers or fathers and their wider family.
- Causing financial hardship – where victim parents were forced to attend court to get to see their own children.
- Interfering with parental responsibility.
- Making false allegations of abuse, fitness to parent, substance abuse, or mental health difficulties.
- Interfering constantly with child-parent time.
- Destroying or disposing of gifts, mementos, photographs, and letters from the co-parent.
- Burdening their child with angry or emotional outbursts to discourage visits.