FLAST CASE BRIEF: Cannon & Wescott  FamCA 148 (12 March 2019)
Shocking Case, “the father” is restrained from spending any time or communicating with the children!
"There are times when the constant parade of misery in this Court threatens to take its toll on those charged with dispensing justice for children within the confines of applying the law pursuant to the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) (“the Act”)."
This judgment came after the father was a no show at the hearing and just after the father abused the ICL and the Court in an Email.
The Court Orders
The mother shall have sole parental responsibility for the children.
Mr Cannon (“the father”) is restrained and an injunction hereby issues restraining him from spending any time or communicating with the children.
The father is restrained and an injunction hereby issues restraining him from initiating any communication with the mother.
In the current case, the applicant, did not bother to turn up to the hearing of his application for a parenting order.
A recent communication from the father to the independent children’s lawyer (“ICL”) was in these terms: (as per original) [ex 7]
I will when I am ready The dumb c#$t could of fixed it himself, but he wouldn’t have the brains to reading all his mistakes in his family reports. I’M TOTALLY THINKING OF PULLING THE PIN ON ALL THIS COURT SHIT!!!! **YA ALL OVER PAID ACTORS**
His history as a "father" has a long criminal record that included pedophilia.
"It was during this time that it appears highly likely that the two female children were sexually abused by their father. Hardly surprising one might have thought."
The judgment is scathing of the "system", it is a short judgement and well worth reading, some quotes from the judge include:
"The Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women should not conclude that this order is intended to be an endorsement of the mother’s capacity to provide a safe and stable environment for the children in the long term"
"There are times when the constant parade of misery in this Court threatens to take its toll on those charged with dispensing justice for children within the confines of applying the law pursuant to the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) (“the Act”). "
"The children have had a dreadful life to date but they, like so many children seen in this Court and various other courts in Australia, are what I consider can aptly be described as ‘the forgotten ones’.
"I say this because, for some people, it seems easier to turn away than to confront some harsh realities about a society that not only permits but encourages children to be born into households where their parents are incapable of providing safe, stable and loving homes and where the children are frequently subjected to the most horrific abuse."
Reading section 10 of the judge's comments I am reminded of the adage 'an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure' .......children from functioning two parent families are, I'd suggest, "our country's most important asset" - those children whom make good (break the cycle) from single parent households are the fortunate minority. Good law, thoughtful law gives due consideration to process, cost, equity, time and creates natural disincentives that would do violence to civil society. (As an aside I am not convinced that the ALRC's Family Law System 2019 recommendations to the Attorney General give due consideration to 'prevention' but rather favour 'cure'.)
10. The millions of dollars routinely wasted by governments of all persuasions on endless enquiries and royal commissions into child safety could actually make a real difference if redirected to the lives of these forgotten children. Children are this country’s most important asset yet the courts and front line services such as the variously named Departments of Child Safety and Police, charged with trying to protect them, are simply starved of sufficient funds to make a difference. Foster carers are few and far between and time and time again parents are afforded second chances at the expense of their children