“Family breakdown ‘ a cancer’ behind almost every evil affecting the country”

 A senior Family Division judge, Mr Justice Sir Paul Coleridge (58), who presides over family courts in the South-West, has launched an outspoken and devastating attack on the state of family life in Britain – and blamed the government for the breakdown of society. He made his remarks last Saturday (5 April) in a speech to family lawyers. The judge has been married for 35 years and has three children.

Using graphic language, he spoke of an ‘epidemic’ of family failures. He warned that children born into broken homes are increasingly turning to drink, drugs and crime.


Using apocalyptic language, he spoke of the ‘wholesale collapse’ of one of the key building blocks of a stable society. He told the lawyers that “in some of the more heavily populated urban areas family life is in meltdown or completely unrecognisable”, adding that “the results are affecting the mental health of parents and children across the country…family life in the old sense no longer exists. I suggest the general collapse of ordinary family life, because of the breakdown of families in this country, is on a scale, depth and breadth which few of us could have imagined even a decade ago. What is certain is that almost all of society’s social ills can be traced directly to the collapse of the family life.

“It is a never-ending carnival of human misery. A large number of families now consist of children being brought up by mothers who have children by a number of different fathers, none of whom take any part in their lives or support or upbringing. These are not isolated, one-off cases. They are part of the stock-in-trade of the family courts. Examine the background of almost every child in the care system or the youth justice system and you will discover a broken family”.

He continued: “Family breakdown is a cancer behind almost every evil affecting the country. Families are the cells which make up the body of society. If the cells are unhealthy and undernourished, or at worse, cancerous and growing haphazard and out of control, in the end the body succumbs. The collapse of the family unit is a threat to the nation as bad as terrorism, crime, drugs or global warming. The government must put the family at the top of its agenda, alongside the economy and the war on terror, and make it rather more important than taking oaths of allegiance”.

He added: “I am not saying every broken family produces dysfunctional children, but I am saying that almost every dysfunctional child is the product of a broken family”.


The judge blamed the ‘neglect’ of successive governments on this issue. He said that re-introducing tax allowances for married couples alone would make little difference. Divorce and sexual ill-health rates are at an all-time high and the highest in Europe.

The Department for Children, Families and Schools reacted defensively by saying: “Most children and young people in England today are safe, healthy, and achieve well”.

2 Responses to “Senior Judge Says British Family Life Is “In Meltdown””

  1. 1 Jane

    Sir Paul Coleridge should be Britian’s Prime Minister.
    His fellow countrymen should stand with him. He obviously sees and knows all about the corrupt society.
    May God bless him and keep him close to his heart.

  2. 2 alinur

    In this type of case judge is very important.

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