The decision of the civil court of Padua - which entrusts a child to the abusive father one year after his criminal conviction for violence against his wife, mistreatment and witnessed violence - violates human rights.

An important international declaration signed by all the representatives of the various UN and regional mechanisms for Europe, Africa and Latin America.

An important statement comes from the representatives of the most important international mechanisms dealing with violence against women both at the United Nations and at the regional level in Europe, Africa and Latin America. great concern for "recurrent patterns that ignore partner violence in determining child custody rights, present in various jurisdictions worldwide".

It is "the de-legitimization of the word of women, who are not believed in the separation when they report mistreatment by the partner, which is interpreted not as violence against women, but as a simple family conflict, sometimes to the point of being judged malevolent or manipulative mothers when their frightened children do not want to see their fathers ”, she clarifies Elena Biaggioni, advocate of the network D.i.Re.

“Take the example of what it is happened in Padua", Emphasizes Biaggioni," where a civil judge decided on the basis of an expert witness, technical advice, the transfer of a child to his father's home, despite the man, a Paduan entrepreneur, was sentenced a year ago in two levels of criminal trial for violence and injuries against the ex-wife, mistreatment in the family and witnessed violence ".

And this, adds Biaggioni, "writing black and white in the decree that the criminal sentence for human violence is "irrelevant" and defining the man as «the figure most suited to guaranteeing emotional stability and childcare» ”.

The Declaration denounces how "Such schemes reveal underlying gender discrimination and stereotypes harmful to women".

The new Platform, which brings together all international bodies dealing with violence against women, has expressed concern over the continuing attempts to "include 'parental alienation' as a voice in the new International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organization (ICD -11) ”, an attempt“ which once again fortunately was not successful because it was not considered scientifically reliable by the WHO committees themselves ”, underlines Biaggioni.

The signatories of the Declaration - Dubravka Simonovich, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women, its causes and consequences, Hilary Gbedemah, President of CEDAW, UN Commission on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women, Ivana Radacic, Chairman of the UN Working Group on Discrimination against Women in Law and Practice, Feride Achar, President of GREVIO, the Council of Europe's Group of Experts on Violence Against Women, Margarette May Macaulay, Rapporteur on Women's Rights in the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Lucy Asuagbor, Special Rapporteur on women's rights in Africa, Sylvia Mesa, President of MESECVI, the Mesoamerican Convention to prevent, sanction and eradicate violence against women - conclude the Declaration with the appeal, addressed to those who administer justice, to "consider violence against women in determining the custody and visitation rights of children, in all cases relating to custody", orienting their sentences “al respect for the human rights of women and children / and to life and to physical, sexual and psychological integrity", Respecting the binding provisions of the Istanbul Convention, and taking into account the "principle of the best interests of the child".

“This Declaration is very important and the Italian judiciary should pay great attention to it”, Concludes Biaggioni. "Judges must know that not taking into account violence against women and witnessed violence when deciding on children's visitation rights, violate domestic law, but also international law and expose themselves to appeals to the ECHR, European Commission on Human Rights, or the CEDAW".

Download the text of the declaration in English: Intimate partner violence against women is an essential factor in the determination of child custody

The text of the Declaration in Italian (unofficial translation made for D.i.Re by lawyers Elena Biaggioni and Sarah Lupi)


* At the beginning, a cartoon by Anarkikka, taken from his series dedicated to witnessed violence