An innovative court that faced a ‘double whammy’ of uncertain funding and the loss of its trailblazing judge has received good news for the new year.
The Family Drug and Alcohol Court (FDAC), which since 2008 has sat at the Inner London Family Proceedings Court in Wells Street, central London, has confirmed that the five local authorities that refer cases to it have committed to provide funding for another year.
A spokesman for the court said: ‘The commitment from the London boroughs to continue for a further year is there and the funding for 2014/15 [will be] discussed and finalised by the end of the financial year 2014.’
The Ministry of Justice has also approved an application from the district judge who is the driving force behind the court to allow him to sit beyond his mandatory retirement age. Nicholas Crichton (pictured), who turned 70 at the end of last year, officially retired last week, but has been authorised to continue sitting for another year, with the possibility of extension.
The FDAC model uses a multi-disciplinary team from the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust and children’s charity Coram working closely with judges to help parents in care cases where substance misuse is a key factor.