Publication of the week: Professor Susan Edwards

12 October 2015

Martin Downs & Susan Edwards, “Brides and martyrs: Protecting children from violent extremism”, Family Law (Sep 2015), 1073-1078

This article analyses the recent cases where the courts have sought to prevent children and their parents from travelling to Syria and other war zones, and the legal context, including the statutory duty now imposed on public authorities to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.

The authors explore the multifarious nature of these cases (including forced marriage and child sexual exploitation), the problems posed for social workers (with the danger that they are being recruited to police families in a politically charged context) and the human rights issues that arise. The challenges it poses for the family justice system are new, with the danger that, without skill and care, children will be separated from their parents because of religious and political belief.

The full text is available on University computers via Family Law Online.

Professor Susan Edwards is a researcher and campaigner and a barrister (Door Tenant, 1 Grays Inn Square, London). She is an expert witness and member of the Expert Witness Institute.  She is Dean of Law at Buckingham, and editor of the Denning Law Journal.  Martin Downs has appeared in a number of recent cases where the inherent jurisdiction has been used to prevent young people travelling to Syria and Iraq.