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Pamplin responds to co-parenting concerns

Minister of Community, Culture and Sports Patricia Gordon-Pamplin (photo by Glenn Tucker)

Community Minister Patricia Gordon-Pamplin this afternoon clarified that a newly announced co-parenting council will carry out oversight functions, not directly mediate disputes.

In a statement, Ms Gordon Pamplin said the Co-Parenting Mediation Council, formed under the Children Amendment Act 2014, is intended only to provide regulatory oversight for co-parenting mediation.

“Contrary to some of the comments made in the media, the council will not be directly engaged in the mediation of parental disputes over custody of or access to a child,” she said.

“Rather, the Council will carry out regulatory functions that include, but are not limited to, developing and maintaining standards for co-parenting mediation, establishing a Co-Parenting Mediation Code of Practice, establishing and maintaining a register of approved co-parenting mediators, issuing annual practicing certificates, undertaking reviews and client surveys of co-parenting mediation and preparing and presenting an annual report to the Minister on co-parenting mediation in Bermuda.”

Regarding recent criticism that the council has no male representatives, she said: “I am confident that the persons currently appointed to the council will carry out their mandate with professionalism and be able to set high standards for co-parenting mediation in Bermuda.

“I further wish to make clear that the legislation provides for a council of five members, with two representing public servants, one of whom must be a mediation coordinator with the Department of Child and Family Services, one member representing the Bar Council and two members representing mediators in the private sector.

“I expect that males who are interested in joining this regulatory council, and who meet the legislative criteria will make themselves known for future consideration.”