The platform of United Nations and regional independent mechanisms on violence against women and women’s rights, including Dubravka Simonovic (UN Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women), has recently published a statement on violence against women and child custody. In it, they express concern over patterns across various jurisdictions of the world that ignore intimate partner violence against women in determining child custody cases.
According to the statement, these patterns reveal underlying discriminatory gender bias and harmful gender stereotypes against women. Ignoring intimate partner violence against women in the determination of child custody can result in serious risks to the children and thus must be considered to ensure and grant their effective protection.
The platform members noted that women subjected to intimate partner violence are at higher risk of negative custody-visitation outcomes. Moreover, discriminatory gender bias often leads to mistrust women, in particular concerning presumed false allegations of child abuse and domestic violence.
The experts further discouraged the abuse of the “Parental Alienation” invoked to deny child custody to the mother and grant it to a father accused of domestic violence in a manner that totally disregards the possible risks for the child.
You can find the statement below.