The #SortItOut campaign calls for immediate action to reduce the damaging impact of parental conflict on an estimated 1.25million children in Britain. This campaign is particularly necessary given the increase in family stress and break-up due to lockdown and the pandemic.
Family relationships are consistently in the top three most common reasons why children contact ChildLine, and campaigners want to highlight the damaging effect of frequent, intense and poorly resolved parental conflict on children’s mental health.
The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Supporting Couple Relationships and Reducing Inter-Parental Conflict is calling on the Government to make relationship support free of charge to all parents in the ongoing conflict.
#SortItOut has the support of a broad spectrum of organisations including Tavistock Relationships, Relate, The Children & Young People’s Mental Health Coalition, the British Association of Counselling & Psychotherapy and the Association of Child Psychotherapists. Deidre Sanders, Agony Aunt for the Sun newspaper and ITV’s This Morning programme, is also backing the campaign.
Richard Meier, policy and projects manager at Tavistock Relationships, explains: ‘Escalating family stress as a result of the coronavirus pandemic means more children than ever before are exposed to the damaging effects of intense parental conflict.
‘The number of children with a probable mental disorder has risen, from one in nine in 2017 to one in six in 2020, and one in five adults are now suffering from depression. The workload of the family courts is growing and the cost of family breakdown is rising.
‘The Sort It Out campaign seeks to make relationship support available free of charge to all parents in conflict. We’d like parental conflict to be assessed for in child mental health services and other settings such as schools. We’d like local authorities, NHS services and courts to offer relationship support services to parents. And we are calling for the Government’s Reducing Parental Conflict Programme to be offered nationally.’
Organisations and individuals can support this campaign by:
- Following the campaign on Twitter @CouplesAPPG
- Tweet using the hashtag #SortItOut
- Reading more about the campaign, and sign up as a supporter