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  • Writer's pictureNicola Lewis

Children as young as 7 affected by parents divorce are more likely to be out of work by 55

The International Longevity Centre UK published a report this week with findings which come as no surprise to many professionals working with children who are subjected to conflict as their parents divorce.

When the two most important figures in a child's life cannot get on, this will have an effect on a child and can affect their sense of self and their mental health. And it appears that these effects can be felt throughout the course of that person's life.

David Sinclair, Director, ILC-UK said:

‘It is clear from this research that some of the drivers for unemployment in our 50s are determined very early in our lives. We must ensure that mental health strategies focus on supporting people of all ages. Early intervention is key if we are to ensure that people can continue to work into old age’.

In mediation our role as mediators is to re-focus parents (who may be in a terrible place on a personal emotional level) back onto the needs of their children. Courts cannot work on communication between parents. They can regulate it by saying for example "no communication" but the court cannot create the conditions for communication to improve between two parents. This is where mediation goes way beyond the powers of a court order. You can work on protecting the mental health of the most important people in your lives: your children.

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