King's professor awarded Law Foundation of Ontario grant
January 18, 2016
Dr. Rachel Birnbaum, Professor in the King’s School of Social Work, obtained a $99,790.00 grant from the Law Foundation of Ontario (2015-2017) to explore and evaluate Views of the Child Reports in Ontario. This research project is a collaborative initiative with the Office of the Chief Justice of the Ontario Court of Justice and Superior Court of Justice, the Office of the Children’s Lawyer and Dr. Rachel Birnbaum.
Views of the Child Reports, sometimes called Voice of the Child or Hear the Child Reports are being increasingly used in some parts of Canada as a means of obtaining the child’s perspective in disputes between parents and/or guardians, but not as common in Ontario. The reports are intended to communicate the child’s views, perspectives and wishes, for use in litigation or dispute resolution in cases between separated or divorcing parents. The reports are non-evaluative and only report on the child’s statements, without offering a conclusion or opinion by the social worker who has prepared the report.
Dr. Birnbaum will be evaluating this service in Ontario with a view to facilitating children’s participation post separation. She is currently on sabbatical pursuing her research in this important area.