Cafcass, “No Shit Sherlock!”

On the 27th November 2017, Cafcass CEO Anthony Douglas published a post on the Cafcass blog entitled Alienation Rarely Exists in Isolation.

In the interests of challenging authority I would like to rip this post of Douglas’ apart to show how incompetent, ineffective and unaccountable both he and his organisation are. Lets be honest it does not take a lot of work to show how incompetent Douglas and Cafcass are.


“Recently in public we have been talking about the negative impact of parental alienation on children.”

But what have you done about it Douglas? Every day in closed family courts throughout the UK Judges and your organisation continue to be complicit it the emotional and psychological abuse of children. Such children that continue to be denied a relationship with both parents, simply because of a flawed system.

“I am glad we have brought this pernicious issue to the surface more.”

Lets get this straight Douglas, you simply are not worthy of giving yourself such credit! Bringing this pernicious issue to the surface more is because of parents, grandparents, step-parents, support and campaign groups that are shouting out loud for you and your draconian, out-dated and ineffective organisation to stop this estrangement, alienation and complete injustice that enables an incalculable number of children to continue to be denied a healthy loving relationship with both parents. Don’t pretend you give a shit Douglas! How dare you attempt to take credit for the above.

“I have suggested that alienation is a form of child abuse. It can have as devastating an impact as physical abuse and can lead directly to child or adolescent mental health problems and other impacts like disturbances to learning, such as not being able to concentrate in class.”

No shit Sherlock! Actions speak louder than words Douglas. What have you actually done about it. Oh yeah that’s right, nothing! Thanks for nothing Douglas!

“It is more usually one set of behaviours among many and is best seen on a spectrum… The post-separation environment can be deeply toxic, even if contact is occasional. That level of toxicity means that an exchange or transaction lasting seconds can cause days, weeks or months of heartache.”

Douglas, you are very good at telling us all what we already know. We don’t just know this oh so obvious rhetoric of yours, we live it every fucking day of our lives.

“It is our role to make sense of what has been happening in terms of its child impact and to differentiate between alienating behaviours on the one hand and when rejection of a parent by a child is more understandable due to the child being genuinely scared or deeply apprehensive about contact.”

Yet another obvious statement from you Douglas! Yes, as we all know, this is the role of Cafcass. However none of your front-line staff know how to differentiate between these two scenarios. And I doubt you would either Douglas.

“The Positive Parenting Plan we are now piloting as an intensive therapeutic social work intervention in high impact cases, will help a greater number of children and their families.”

Will it really? Has it already? Where are the results? Where is the review? Where are the success stories? Is your Positive Parenting Plan a robust and evidence based framework to effectively assess and manage cases of parental alienation?

By the way Douglas, there are two comments posted under your above mentioned post. They both appear to be written by adults adversely affected by parental alienation. One has been moderated, so they must have come to someone’s attention within Cafcass. But I’m guessing Cafcass does not feel either of them are worthy of anyone within the organisation replying to them. That in itself speaks volumes for both yourself Douglas and your organisation.

As I wrote above, actions speak louder than words Douglas.

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