Friday November 04, 2016

A family court judge calls divorce a 'public health crisis' that doesn't belong in the courts

Judge Harvey Brownstone thinks divorce is less of a legal issue than a public-health issue.

Judge Harvey Brownstone thinks divorce is less of a legal issue than a public-health issue. (Nicola Betts)

Listen 9:26

Ontario family court and criminal court judge Harvey Brownstone has a bench-eye view on thousands of families in the act of breaking apart. While Brownstone understands the need for courts in the process of divorce, he also knows that he is not qualified to deal with the emotional toll they have on a family.

Divorce, according to Brownstone, is not only a legal issue; it's also about the well-being of the kids. He goes as far to call it a public health crisis. 

"Everyone agrees that the children are innocent in a breakup...the least we can do for them is to insolate them from the conflict...they don't get to have another childhood."

Too often, he sees parents looking for revenge rather than trying to find a way to make the process easy on the kids.

"It's paramount that parents going through a separation remember that they have to — if they really love their children — figure out a way to love their children more than they dislike each other."