HC Deb 05 February 1996 vol 271 cc59-60W
30. Mr. Rowe

To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what representations he has received relating to access centres for children of separated parents; what was his response; and if he will make a statement. [11788]

Mr. Jonathan Evans

I have recently received an enquiry about the funding of access and child contact centres in connection with the Government's proposals for reform of divorce law and the legal aid system. Under the Government's proposals, services providing mediation in disputes relating to family matters may become eligible to receive funding through the legal aid system. If centres consider that they provide such services, it may become open to them to apply for such funding.

Contact centres play a valuable role in facilitating contact with children following family breakdown, and can provide a variety of services. There are at present a range of local family centres, some of which are run by charitable organisations, which receive funding from the voluntary sector and from local authorities.

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