Independent children's lawyers: views of children and young people: survey report prepared for Legal Aid NSW
Anderson, D, Graham, A, Cashmore, J, Bell, F, Beckhouse, K & Alex, M 2016, 'Independent children's lawyers: views of children and young people: survey report prepared for Legal Aid NSW', Legal Aid NSW, Sydney, NSW.
Research Background: In line with with their rights and Australian law, children's views are sought in family law matters, such as separation and divorce. A Independent Children's Lawyer (ICL) may be involved in this process. However the nature of their role is not always well understood by children or their parents. In addition, there is little evidence gathering children's perspectives on the effectiveness of their interactions with ICLs.
Research Contribution: This research involved two research components: a comprehensive literature review of existing relevant research; and, the development, piloting and administration of a survey to 54 children and young people involved with ICLs through Legal Aid NSW. The survey contributes new knowledge on children's experiences and perspectives of their engagement with the legal process. Combined with insights from the literature review, these are translated for practice into a Good Practice Guide to improve the practice of ICLs nationwide.
Research Significance: Better understanding children's understandings and experiences is central to improving best practice amongst ICLs and, correspondingly, improving children's experiences of the legal process and children's lives.