Does Albany Have the Will to Create Family Court Judgeships?

, New York Law Journal

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The new fiscal budget includes funding for 20 new Family Court judges starting next year, but the positions have yet to be created by the Legislature. If history is any lesson, the Legislature's ability to successfully create these judgeships and distribute them within New York City and among upstate counties is not readily apparent.

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What's being said

  • Yisroel Schulman

    The NY State Legislature, the Governor and the Judiciary are to be commended for passing a budget that respects the needs of people who have no choice but to seek help in Family Court to resolve the most basic and critical problems in their lives. Every day public interest attorneys -- from my organization and many others representing poor and low-income clients in Family Court – see firsthand the toll taken because of the shortage of judges. Children in foster care wait to be returned to their families, victims of domestic violence remain at risk, and critical support payments are delayed. I am confident, despite past inaction, that this time there is the will, and the bi-partisan support, to address the crisis in our Family Court system.

  • Gerard McCaffery

    As the CEO of a non-profit agency that provides foster care services in NYC and Long Island, the delays in achieving permanency for children in foster care are unconscionable. While everything involved in foster care is complicated and difficult, the need for additional Family Court judges is clear and obvious to anyone who has spent even a few hours in a court room. Such delays must feel like a lifetime for a young child in foster care. Family Court judges should have the time to weigh the facts and options of every case so that every child can have the best outcome in a timely manner. The time to fund additional Family Court judges is now!

    Gerard McCaffery
    President/CEO
    MercyFirst

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