Australia Takes the Lead to Hold World Congress on Child Protection Australia Takes the Lead to Hold World Congress on Child Protection

News & Events

Australia Takes the Lead to Hold World Congress on Child Protection

  • World Congress Chairman Geoffrey Sinclair said the event was an important initiative for focusing international attention on the growing issue of international family law and children protection.

Leading family lawyers from around the world will travel to Ireland next week for a four-day conference on family law and international children’s rights.

More than 600 delegates from 57 countries including representatives from the Australian Federal Police are expected to attend the 7th World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights (WCFLCR) which will be held from 4 to 7 July in Dublin.

“We are looking forward to welcoming the best and brightest legal minds in family law from around the world in what will be the largest world think tank on children’s rights yet,” said Mr Sinclair.

“We have sought input from leading international judiciary, lawyers and academics to take part in a dynamic program and are offering delegates the opportunity to network with  international child experts.

“Increasingly the rights of the child are becoming more important in family law as research shows the negative psychological impacts family violence, divorce and separation and lengthy court proceedings are having on children long-term.

“There is no doubt the changing dynamic of ‘family’ and the globalisation of marriage and divorce are having broader implications on child custody and international family law.

“The World Congress will be an unparalleled opportunity for family lawyers globally to share their ideas and experiences of how they are meeting the challenges of a changing world.”

Key issues being discussed at the Congress include justice and equality (including juvenile justice, race and gender, courts administration), child protection (including abuse and neglect, violence and exploitation, immigration and separated children, children in conflict situations), child participation (including court proceedings, private family disputes, alternative dispute resolution), changing family forms (including marriage equality, civil partnership, surrogacy) and international families (including recognition and enforcement of judgments, international adoption, international child abduction).

On day two of the Congress there will be a special plenary session with The Right Honourable Baroness Brenda Hale of Richmond, DBE, Deputy President of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom.

Other guest speakers include Commander Lesa Gale, Manager Victim Based Crime, Crime Operations and Marina Simoncini Director Outreach and Prevention from the Australian Federal Police and Lesley Podesta, CEO of Australian children’s charity, Alannah & Madeleine Foundation.

“The breadth of expertise in our Congress programme is recognition of the need to adopt a multi-disciplinary approach to the issue of children’s rights and child protection across law enforcement, law reform, health, family and immigration services,” said Mr Sinclair.

Geoffrey Sinclair

  • Chair of the Board, World Congress of Family Law and Children’s Rights
  • Fellow, International Academy of Family Lawyers
  • Immediate past Chair, Family Law Section of the Law Council of Australia

Geoffrey has practised solely in Family Law since 1988. He is a family law partner with Barry Nilsson Lawyers and has a particular interest in the law relating to child abduction, including international aspects together with complex property settlement matters. Geoffrey was a co-contributor to the Superannuation Section of the Family Law and Practice CCH and has published various other articles on issues relating to bankruptcy law, family law and international child abduction matters. He also contributes to LexisNexis Practical Guide to Family Law.

Visit the WCFLCR 2017​ website for the congress programme.

For media queries, please contact:
Sally Rutherford
07 3231 6180
sally.rutherford@bnlaw.com.au