Consultation on the Voice of the Child at the 5th World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights
Référence bibliographique 
Paetsch, Joanne J., Bertrand, Lorne D., Walker, Jane, MacRae, Leslie D. et Bala, Nicholas. 2009. Consultation on the Voice of the Child at the 5th World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights. Calgary: National Judicial Institute et Canadian Research Institute for Law and the Family.
Intentions : «The purpose of this project was twofold: (1) to identify issues that have arisen, both across Canada and internationally, in attempts to allow the voice of the child to be heard in family law proceedings; and (2) to identify best practices in this area, which can be utilized for jurisdictions that are trying to enhance mechanisms for hearing the voice of the child, and in particular that might be implemented in Canada.» (p. vii)
Questions/Hypothèses : «The following research questions were addressed in this project: (1) What mechanisms for hearing the voice of the child are used in Canada? (2) What mechanisms for hearing the voice of the child are used in other countries? (3) What factors are important to consider when deciding what weight should be given to children’s views? (4) What problems have jurisdictions encountered in implementing mechanisms for hearing the voice of the child? (5) What solutions have been identified to deal with the problems? (6) Are there mechanisms used in other countries that could be implemented in Canada?» (p. vii)
Échantillon/Matériau : «The consultation was held in conjunction with the 5th World Congress on Family Law and Children’s Rights, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, August 23-26, 2009. The project consisted of three components: (1) a focused international literature review; (2) a survey to be completed by conference participants; and (3) a workshop, facilitated by experts in the area, that introduced participants to the topic and provided an opportunity for discussion of specific issues.» (p. 3) Note that «[a] total of 82 surveys were completed and returned. [About the workshop, it] was open to all conference participants, and approximately 75 delegates attended.» (p. 4)
Instruments : Questionnaire
Type de traitement des données : Analyse de contenu Réflexion critique
According to the authors, «[t]he research literature […] emphasized the importance of giving children a voice in family law proceedings that affect them. […] In Canada, a wide variety of mechanisms are used for hearing the voice of the child, although some mechanisms are more frequently used than others. […] To put Canada in the global context, the mechanisms for hearing the voice of the child in other countries were also examined. Unlike Canada, however, international respondents were considerably less likely to report the use of testimony by children; within Canada, there is considerable variation in the extent to which children are interviewed by a judge or testify in court, with these practices more common in Quebec. […] Almost all of the survey respondents thought the following factors were important when deciding how much weight to give to a child’s views: age of child; ability of child to understand the situation; indication of parental coaching; child’s reasons for views; ability of child to communicate; child’s emotional state; and presence of domestic violence. While all of these factors were rated as important, several respondents commented that decisions regarding how much weight to give to a child’s views need to be considered on a case-by-case basis, taking into account characteristics of both the child and the circumstances surrounding the case. […] It is evident from this project and the research literature that children have a right to be heard in family law proceedings.» (p. vii-ix) Note : Ce rapport contient des informations sur la province du Québec.