DOMESTIC abuse survivors and their children are to be treated fairly in the family courts under plans put together by North Yorkshire’s Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Julia Mulligan.

The Commission is to bring together key partners and organisations from across the county in an effort to improve the current situation.

Mrs Mulligan commissioned a report to discover what was happening, assess the processes involved and find out what can be done to improve the situation currently being faced. It is estimated at least seven in ten cases in the family courts have domestic abuse as a factor.

The study found that while there are good people with good intentions working day-in, day-out to help survivors, all too often the system itself is causing trauma and stress and forcing them back into close proximity with their abusers, after they have taken the difficult and brave step of leaving abusive partners.

She said: ““This much-needed and well-written report lifts the lid on the complexities and challenges in the system, seeking feedback from those who have found it a struggle. Not everyone has experienced these challenges, and indeed the family courts, Cafcass, support services and others do work well together to keep children protected and individuals safe.”

The report was conducted by the Independent Domestic Abuse Services (IDAS).