A human initiative for children in cooperation with Shari‘a courts
Children is one of the main targeted groups that Palestinian Center for Democracy and Conflict Resolution (PCDCR) works on their protection and providing a protective and supportive environment for them. Whether for all children or children with disabilities, PCDCR seeks to deliver all their desired rights, such as the right to equality, right to a good education, and the right to protection from oppression and abuse. Several issues related to family after-divorce disputes has been identified since that PCDCR is working on in the field of family mediation which is based on the principle of family intervention to resolve disputes, in order to contribute in achieving the stability of the society. PCDCR figured out that one of the most remarkable of these issues is the children meeting their parents, especially when one of the parents is taking the children as weapon to defend for his situation and to create a pressure on the other parent. It was also noted that most of the Shari’a court’s judgements related to the meeting between children and parents, they choose police offices as a place for them to meet in, and this is caused by the intransigence of the parents, to accept that the meeting will be in one of the parents’ house. This is the point where the idea of family forum came up from, which it aims to alleviate the severe suffering of the kids which is caused by the negative psychological impact of seeing their parents in police offices. Consequently, family forum is considered as a safe place for the divorced parents to see their kids according to Shari’a conditions which must be followed to serve the human side of the divorced parents and their kids to keep them away from violence and unsecure places. Coordination has been done with the stakeholders within the governmental institutions especially with Shari’a courts, where PCDCR submitted a proposal to the deputy chief judge in order to allocate a safe place for the separated parents to see their children. That placed would be termed as the “Family Forum”, which is psychologically comfortable and easily accessible, where it’s located in the H.O of PCDCR in front of Governor’s Mansion, in addition to PCDCR’s other branches in G.S and W.S.
Based on the Shari’a and professional standards, the Palestinian Center for Democracy and Conflict Resolution sought to establish the family forum upon the declaration no. 22/2010 issued by the Supreme Judicial Council. This declaration states that parents and others, who have the right to custody the children, can see their kids after issuing the court writ. Accordingly, PCDCR has been approved as safe place for parents to meet their children, where the Centre initiated the implementation of the program, with the contribution of PCDCR’s employees and volunteers in order to support the idea of family forum and alleviate family separation.
Family Forum Goals:
- Alleviating the suffering of the kids caused by the negative psychological impact of seeing their parents in police offices.
- Facilitating the ways for parents to see their kids according to share’a conditions which must be followed to serve the human side of the divorced parents and their kids to keep them away from violence and unsecure places.
Presented Services of the Family Forum:
- All kinds of facilitations can be found in the family forum in addition to the ease access to PCDCR’s offices.
- Parents can see their kids in a suitable place and at a suitable time to support the parents and their kids psychologically.
- The psychological specialist in the family forum can solve all problems face the parents and their kids.
- Family forum’s team can intervene to reach a solution related to child custody.
- The social specialist can intervene to solve the problem between parents.
- Family forum’s team communicates with Judiciary Police, whether the court writ on the side of parents to see their kids or not, to enable parents to see their kids easily. When the custodial part prevents the other part to see the kid, she/he can resort to court to writ to enable him/her to see the kid by force.
Family forum offices:
- Gaza- in front of Qasr Al-Hakem, Tel.: 2835699
- Khan Younis – Al-Mahata Street, Tel.: 2067776
- Al-Nusierat – the main Street, Tel.: 2563323