Families Need Fathers Scotland will relaunch as Shared Parenting Scotland at an event in Edinburgh on 10 February.
The change has been driven because an increasing proportion of people who contact the organisation, which works to promote shared care where families have split up, are not fathers but grandparents, sisters, new partners, same sex parents and mothers. Also, based on research and changing approaches to family law around the world, it believes that as a general rule children do better in most aspects of their life when they are confident they have the support, loyalty and love of both their parents – and their respective extended families – even after they no longer live together.
Keynote addresses at the relaunch will be delivered by Sir James Munby, who retired as head of the Family Courts in England & Wales in 2018, and Amanda Masson, partner at Harper Macleod LLP.
Sir James, now chair of the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory, will talk about the work of the Observatory and the lessons that he learned from the bench as families looked to the law for help in resolving issues they could not.
Ms Masson, a Law Society of Scotland accredited specialist in child law, family law and family mediation, will discuss how the concepts of "contact" and "residence" could evolve in the Children (Scotland) Bill to embrace the notion of shared care.
Shared Parenting Scotland national manager, Ian Maxwell, commented: "We have been a separately constituted charity in Scotland for 10 years and, I believe, have build up some credibility for our efforts in focusing the efforts of separated parents on finding a way to put their children first."
After explaining the name change he added: "Our concern, and our campaigning that lies ahead, is to tackle the attitudes and the practical obstacles there are in Scotland that stop parents looking at the bigger picture for their children. There are too many incentives to conflict and too few incentives to collaboration. That's not getting it right for every child."
To book a place at the relaunch event see sharedparentingscotlandlaunch.eventbrite.ie