Setfords lawyer to meet with MP to discuss Private Members’ Bill aimed at seeing parental alienation officially recognised


Setfords Solicitors’ Head of Family Joanna Abrahams is today meeting MP Oliver Dowden to discuss taking steps that would see parental alienation become an officially recognised phenomenon in England.

Mrs Abrahams is one of the country’s leading specialists in parental alienation and wants Mr Dowden to introduce a Private Members’ Bill designed to make it a part of the Children Act 1989.

Parental alienation is the deliberate manipulation of a child by one parent against the other parent. Whilst it is now commonly mentioned within the courts it is still not officially recognised. However, elsewhere in the world it is given greater weight. In Brazil alienation is considered a criminal act, in Italy parents can be fined, and it is widely recognised in America and Canada.

Mrs Abrahams, who lives within Mr Dowden’s constituency in Hertsmere, said: “Securing this meeting is another important step in our campaign.

“I am hopeful Mr Dowden will appreciate the urgent need to see parental alienation officially recognised in England to ensure we can do more to tackle it and reduce the upset and pain it causes so many families.”

Mrs Abrahams has spent much of the past year campaigning to raise awareness around the issue appearing across the media including on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and BBC Two’s Victoria Derbyshire programme, as well as in the The Guardian and The Telegraph.

In March this year the issue of parental alienation was raised during a debate in the House of Commons.

If the Private Members’ Bill were introduced and successful, parental alienation would feature in the Children Act 1989 which is designed to ensure children are safeguarded and their welfare promoted.