WATCH: Minister Lamola officially opens Point Family Court
DURBAN - MINISTER of Justice and Correctional Services, Ronald Lamola, today officially opened the Point Family Court which is set to offers integrated services including those relating to domestic violence, maintenance, the children’s court and protection from harassment, among other things – meaning that communities can now access a variety of family services at one service point.
Previously accommodated at the Durban Magistrate’s Court, the Family Court experienced severe spatial challenges and this necessitated radical alteration to be effected, culminating in the establishment of the stand-alone Point Branch Family court.
Offering services in a more secure and private atmosphere that promotes and maintains human dignity, while ensuring an environment that is victim and child friendly, the court consists of six family court rooms with expanded waiting rooms.
Addressing media in attendance, Lamola said the court will be the first court in South Africa where domestic violence survivors can apply online for a protection order.
"We hope to learn important lessons from this pilot as we prepare to roll out a more comprehensive version throughout the country. Section 28 of the Constitution enjoins us to act at all material times in the best of interest of the child. Through this Family Court today, we entrench that right.
“In this court, we introduce a much welcome innovation in our quest to gear our justice system towards an effective response to gender-based violence," he said.