Anthony Douglas CBE to support preparations for GAL national service

Anthony Douglas CBE to support preparations for GAL national service

Anthony Douglas CBE

Family justice expert Anthony Douglas CBE has been appointed to help progress preparations for the planned guardian ad litem (GAL) national service.

Mr Douglas is the former chief executive of Cafcass, the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service, which represents children in family court cases in England. He was awarded a CBE in 2008 for his work in family justice and adoption.

The Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth said the work to be undertaken by Mr Douglas is “an important step in fulfilling the government’s commitment to strengthening the voice of the child in court proceedings”.

Reform of the current model of GAL provision is intended to provide for universal access to a GAL for all children involved in child care court proceedings.

Minister Roderic O’Gorman said: “I am delighted to welcome Mr Douglas to work with my Department. He is highly regarded in his field and brings a wealth of relevant experience to this project. I have no doubt that his contributions will be of great benefit to ensuring a future guardian ad litem office of the highest quality.

“Ireland has led the way in ensuring the voice of children is brought to decisions relevant to their lives across many spheres of public and private life. Children finding themselves in the child care court system will be guaranteed their voice is heard and that is only right and proper.”

Mr Douglas added: “I am very pleased to be working with the Department on this project. GALs play a pivotal role in making sure each child in care has the best possible chance of the best possible future.

“I will work collaboratively and inclusively with all stakeholders to ensure that I can help to create the conditions of future success for the new service.”

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