The World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights exists to enhance, promote and protect the human rights of children and young people, bringing together individuals and organisations from around the world who share a common concern about the rights of children and seek to influence the legal and justice system to better protect the rights of young people in their own jurisdictions and across the globe. In 1990, solicitors Stuart Fowler and Rod Burr, both former chairs of the Family Law section of the Law Council of Australia and Judges of the Family Court of Australia, as well as the then Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia, the Hon. Alastair Nicholes AO RTD QC, assisted the Council of LawAsia, an organisation representing the legal fraternity in some 24 countries in the Asia and Pacific Region, to establish a Family Law and Family Rights section of LawAsia. This section was dedicated to addressing issues relevant to the human rights of families and children. From there, the World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights was established as an organisation, with the First World Congress being held in Sydney, Australia in July 1993.
Since this time, the World Congress has sought to create outcomes that benefit those who are vulnerable and disadvantaged, with a particular focus on children and young people. The conference acts as a platform for judges, lawyers, politicians, health care professionals, social workers, community, government and private sector representatives and human rights advocates from around to world to come together to achieve positive change and develop best practices for the active protection of rights as they affect young people and families.
The World Congress has established itself as a leading international forum for discussions and deliberation on issues and areas such as: family violence, child abuse and family conflict, international child abduction, child protection, trafficking and child exploitation, surrogacy, children of same sex families, family law and religion, children of war and child labour.
Sally Nicholes, Managing Partner of Nicholes Family Lawyers, a qualified Independent Children’s Lawyer, Collaborative Law Practitioner and AIFLAM Arbitrator and fellow of the International Academy of Family Lawyers, is a Board Member and Deputy Chair of the World Congress.
In Episode 20 of the Nicholes Family Lawyers Podcast Network Series, Sally is joined by the World Congress founders, Stuart Fowler AM and Rod Burr AM. This podcast explores the operation of the World Congress as it relates to family law and the promotion of the human rights of children and young people, and in particular looks at the origins and beginnings of this organisation as a catalyst for change in the family law and children’s rights sector around the world.
We invite you to listen to the podcast here: https://nicholeslaw.com.au/podcasts/world-congress-on-family-law-and-childrens-rights-podcast-episode-20/