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Business of the House

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:59 am on 6th February 2020.

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Photo of Louise Haigh Louise Haigh Shadow Minister (Home Office) (Policing) 10:59 am, 6th February 2020

Last month, it was reported that Justice Tolson, the senior family judge in London’s central family court, found that a woman had not been raped because she had not taken sufficient physical steps to protect herself. The Court of Appeal found that his judgment was

“manifestly at odds with current jurisprudence” and based on “obsolescent concepts” about consent. Justice Tolson is still overseeing cases of domestic abuse and rape in the family court, and just this Monday, despite the Court of Appeal judgment, he made the same ruling again. Complaints have been made to the judicial ombudsman, and it is obviously right that this is handled completely independently of this place, but does the Leader of the House agree that the judge should immediately recuse himself from all cases involving domestic abuse and rape and that the Ministry of Justice’s review should be published urgently, to ensure that victims of rape and domestic abuse are not re-traumatised by the family justice system?