It’s only logical to assume that a child should be given the opportunity to express their views wholeheartedly in children proceedings. However, the important question remains — just how much weight should the words of a child be allotted when making court decisions?
Freedom of expression is rarely a part of a children’s rights advocacy, especially as a stand-alone issue. However, Child Rights International Network stresses that giving a child the right to freedom and expression as it can be a good marker for gauging their perceptions in any given society.
It is also true that whatever a child would speak, it would be a result of their feelings. Their feelings indeed do come in the way, especially in making court statements. Another problem to consider is that as to what extent of a child’s opinion is really his own and how is it influenced externally.
To deal with this universal parenting dilemma, parents should try to figure out that when a child says they want something, they don’t actually mean to need it. In a recent case, the court made a mandatory requirement for the child’s point of view to be heard at all costs.
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