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End This Injustice

Daily Express

Synopsis:

‘Mother whose children were killed by ex-husband pleads to remove domestic abusers’ rights’ was written by Liz Perkins and published in the Daily Express as part of an exclusive campaign.

Claire Throssell’s sons Jack, 12, and Paul, nine, were lured into the attic of their home by their father, Darren Sykes, with the promise of a train set and chocolate in a bid to kill them, while on a visit enforced by the Family Court.

Furious Sykes, who was angered by the decision that by his sons wanted his custody visits reduced or stopped, in just 15 minutes had started 14 fires, barricaded the house and locked himself and the boys in the loft to die on October 22, 2014.

Claire who held Paul in his final moments and saw Jack die in hospital five days later backed the publication’s crusade for a complete overhaul of the Family Court.

My End This Injustice campaign is fighting to end parental rights of fathers of children conceived by rape and for an inquiry into how the Family Court considers domestic abuse and violence in child arrangement cases.

Claire said: “It took 15 minutes for my life to end and my existence to begin. It is amazing you are taking up this cause, thank you so much for giving us this platform. We can shout it from the rooftops and reach the people we want to reach.

“We need these reforms as quickly as possible. Women and children are dying every day at the hands of domestic abusers and the court is not protecting them.”

Harrowing stories such as Claire’s have led to Justice Minister Alex Chalk to pledge to change the law as he said was “campaigned for so effectively and emotively in these pages.”

Impact:

‘Mother whose children were killed by ex-husband pleads to remove domestic abusers’ rights’ forms part of my exclusive Daily Express End This Injustice campaign which inspired Justice Minister Alex Chalk to change British law and pledge sweeping reforms through the landmark Domestic Abuse Bill to protect domestic abuse victims and their children within the Family Court.

As part of my crusade, I championed the overhaul of the Family Court system, which Mr Chalk has now pledged through the Bill, which is on the cusp of receiving Royal Assent.

The campaign called for an inquiry into how the family courts handle domestic abuse and violence against women and girls in child arrangement cases along with the removal of parental rights for fathers of children conceived through rape.

The Government reforms will see victims given automatic entitlement to separate building entrances, waiting rooms and protective screens to shield them from abusers in court.

Ministers will make it easier for judges to issue barring orders, preventing abusive ex-partners from repeatedly dragging victims back to court – to continue their torture, as highlighted through my campaign.

Mr Chalk said: “This newspaper deserves huge credit for the spotlight it has shone on the family courts.”

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