Thursday, April 30, 2009

Dad, teen daughter both lose

Dad, teen daughter both lose


28th April 2009, 3:24am

http://www.calgarys columnists/ mindelle_ jacobs/2009/ 04/28/9274291- sun.html

This is the tragedy of a messed up mom who couldn't parent, a stable dad who wanted to but was overlooked and a troubled child who's been raised by the state.

Some men don't want anything to do with the children they've fathered. Others, like David, do but end up shut out of their kids' lives because of hostile ex-partners, government bureaucracy and legal fees that sap their spirits as well as their bank accounts.

I'd like to identify David (not his real name) but I can't because his daughter, almost 17, is in foster care in B.C. She has been a permanent ward of the state since age 8, when she was removed from her unfit mother's care.

When a child is taken into protective custody, both parents are supposed to be served with court papers. Somehow, David, 44, an Edmonton computer systems analyst, was never contacted.

So a father who'd been looking for his daughter for 15 years was denied the right to parent and a child who had often wondered about her dad grew up angry and suicidal in state care.

David and his ex-girlfriend had a brief fling in 1991 and then broke up. The following year, she called him to say they had a baby girl. For a few months, things were fine. He visited them regularly but when he broached the subject of joint custody, she cut off access altogether.


Shortly after, social services came to him for child support which, after DNA tests to confirm paternity, he gladly paid, figuring it would get him joint custody. He assumed wrong.

He spent two years and $10,000 fighting in vain for joint custody. Then his ex-girlfriend and daughter vanished. Even maintenance enforcement officials couldn't find them. The child support cheques were being returned as undeliverable but David still had to go to court to stop the payments.

He hadn't seen his daughter since she was about 18 months old. "I basically just gave up," says David. "I couldn't do it financially and I couldn't do it emotionally and that really destroyed me."

But it gnawed at him that he had a daughter somewhere and he tried to find her over the years. He always hit a dead end. Then he got an Internet hit in December. She was tagged on a Facebook photo.

They e-mailed back and forth and he went to visit her in B.C. in March, with the permission of social services officials. "It was very surreal," says David, of seeing her after 15 years. "For her, I've never been there. I'm a stranger," he says. "I could know her for the rest of her life and I don't think I'll ever get that time back. You can't."

His daughter contemplated committing suicide last year and is struggling with feelings of abandonment, says David. "I don't know what it's like to have a father and I've always tried to imagine who you were and why you weren't ever around," she wrote him in a January e-mail.

David probably wasn't contacted by social services when his daughter was taken into state care because officials weren't aware of his existence, a B.C. social worker explained to him in a recent e-mail.


"Oftentimes, mothers are angry/resentful at the child's father or do not want the father to have the child if they can't have the child," she wrote. "Sadly, your situation is not unique."

Laments David: "They could have found me if they'd wanted to." Now all he can do is try to build a relationship with a mistrustful daughter he's never known.

Whether she wants to live with him or just open the door a crack for a meaningful connection is now her decision. "I think I was robbed," says David, bitterly. "I think she was robbed."

mindy.jacobs@ sunmedia. ca

Judge uses poet Philip Larkin's words to warn mum and dad

One of Britain's most senior family court judges borrowed the stark words of poet Philip Larkin to warn an acrimonious couple that they were "within a whisker" of losing their child.

read more | digg story

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

New order for family violence

Quote: Prime Minister Kevin Rudd will launch the report with the Minister
for the Status of Women, Tanya Plibersek, in Canberra today. It is believed
Ms Plibersek hopes the national register of family violence orders -
accessible by all courts throughout the country - would eventually lead to
orders being applicable across different jurisdictions.

I presume different jurisdictions will include New Zealand?False allegations of domestic violence will crucify many downunder dads.The Family Court makes orders without evidence and does not allow any appeal rights. So UNFAIR !!

http://www.theage. new-order- for-family- violence- 20090428- am28.html

The Age (Melbourne)
29 April 2009

New order for family violence
By Dewi Cooke

Family violence orders protecting women and their children could eventually
be enforceable across all states and territories under a Federal Government
plan to create a national register of orders issued by courts and police.

The system of national registration is among the recommendations to be
adopted by the Federal Government from the Time for Action report into
combating violence against women.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd will launch the report with the Minister for the
Status of Women, Tanya Plibersek, in Canberra today. It is believed Ms
Plibersek hopes the national register of family violence orders -
accessible by all courts throughout the country - would eventually lead to
orders being applicable across different jurisdictions.

One of the report's authors, Libby Lloyd, said each state now had its own
system for issuing protection orders and if a woman moved interstate, she
would have to register for a new order.

"It's a major issue because people who are profoundly frightened are made
doubly victims," she said.

In a statement, Attorney-General Robert McClelland said there were
significant advantages to having a central system where information about
domestic and family violence orders could be accessed by law-enforcement

"This would eliminate uncertainty and enable responses to be taken more
quickly and on the basis of the best information available," he said.

It is expected the Federal Government will immediately implement 11 of the
report's 20 recommendations.

In response, Mr Rudd will today announce a $12.5 million, 24-hour crisis
telephone line, $26 million in funding for violence prevention programs and
a public information campaign, an assessment of effective treatment
programs for perpetrators as well as an examination of relevant laws by the
Australian Law Reform Commission.

The report was produced by the Government-appointe d National Council to
Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children.

Council chairwoman Ms Lloyd described the continuing incidence of family
violence as a national scandal.

The report will be presented to a Council of Australian Governments meeting

Seven further recommendations will be negotiated with states and
territories. The remaining two are up for discussion while the Government
finalises its national plan on violence against women, expected next year.

Family courts system accused of hiding evidence from parents

Parents fighting in the family courts for contact with their children are being denied access to their personal files by a corrupt system, a leading parental rights campaigner has said.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

USA ; You are a Rightwing Extremist

YOU are a "Rightwing Extremist"
and a "Threat to our Nation's Security"!!!

In a new report from the US Department of Homeland Security, conservatives, not terrorists, are named as the #1 threat to the nation's security. Citizens standing for conservative values including those who are pro-life are named as right winged extremists whose activities need to be monitored.

The Obama administration is trying to silence the activities of pro-family citizens and groups - while they destroy families throughout the world.

We cannot stand by and allow the voice for families to be silenced. This is why we are urgently asking you to make the most generous contribution you can possibly make.

United Families International depends completely on individual donors - like you. We know times are tough. But, we must fight this growing threat, and we cannot do it without you!

Just recently, the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, announced the Obama administration's plans at the UN and around the world. In a bold move, she publicly defined "reproductive health and rights" as including abortion and the intention of the US to push abortion around the world.

United Families has been fighting at the UN for over 30 years. We will continue to be your voice representing the values you hold dear - but we cannot continue without your help.

Unfortunately, fighting against the constant attacks on the family is not free. Just to inform you of the growing threat against the family costs United Families over $50 thousand a year. This dollar amount includes monitoring federal and state legislative bodies, UN policy and the actual reporting of anti-family initiatives.

Without your financial help, we cannot continue to alert you of what is happening at the UN and here at home.

Will you stand and make a difference today? We are grateful to every $25, $50, and $100 donation we get, and contributions of any amount really help, but we also urgently need many contributions of $500, $1000 or higher.

Please donate today so that United Families can continue to protect a future for YOUR family and families worldwide! Lives and freedom depend on it.

You can make an online donation, call our office at 877.435.7834 or print this form and mail a check. The future for the family depends on YOU! Please consider making a generous donation today.

Thank you for your support,
United Families International

Please Forward This On To Others Concerned About The Family

PO Box 2630
Gilbert, AZ 85299

Phone: (877) 435-7834
Fax: (480) 892-4417
Web site:

When Divorce Kills:How Gender Bias Pushes Men Over the Edge

When Divorce Kills: How Gender Bias Pushes Some Men Over the Edge
By Jeffery M. Leving | Apr 28, 2009

Chicago, IL – (April 9, 2009) – In the past two weeks, the nation has been shocked by three cases of domestic violence ending in the deaths of innocent children. Two weeks ago, two Illinois boys and their father, Michael Connolly, were found dead in an apparent case of murder-suicide. Last week, James Harrison, a father in Washington, allegedly shot to death his five children before killing himself. On Monday, an Alabama man, Kevin Garner, allegedly killed his estranged wife, their daughter and two other relatives before committing suicide. A common factor in these three cases is divorce: a father in distress probably because he was losing all that he held dear.

I lament these terrible tragedies; as a parent myself, I can imagine the agony the death of a child must bring to a family. As a fathers’ rights attorney, I regret that these high-profile cases are reinforcing the malicious stereotype of the brutal father, a stereotype that sabotages the efforts of many good fathers who love their children.

The fact is that most fathers do not harm their children. Domestic violence is not gender specific, as some mothers have also committed similar unnatural acts. For example, I am currently representing a soldier, formerly deployed in Iraq, who is now struggling to rescue his daughter from the alleged abuse of her mother in Chicago.

Divorce is often regarded as one of the most stressful events in an adult’s life. However, it is especially painful for men in our society due to blatant gender bias in our system. Most divorced men lose custody of their children, and have to pay substantial and sometimes onerous child support. This bias is evident when examining the raw numbers of custody rulings from jurisdictions across the United States. Mothers win 85 percent of all such disputes. According to the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, divorced and separated men are two and a half times more likely to commit suicide than married men. By contrast, the incidence of suicide among divorced women is no greater than that for married women.

The notion that divorced or otherwise estranged fathers don’t want or need continuing involvement with their children is insensitive and false. Fathers suffer very real pain and an overpowering sense of loss when excluded from their children’s lives. In my book “Fathers’ Rights,” I warned of the agony suffered by fathers affected by the gender bias, pointing out that “fathers from all walks of life find separation from their children to be a torturous, devastating experience.”

While most divorced men are able to cope with the unfair treatment by our system, some individuals collapse under the pressure of their emotions, destroying their family and themselves. Sometimes all these fathers need is someone who understands; someone to share their problems with. This and more can be provided by the not-for-profit organization which I founded in Illinois, the Fatherhood Educational Institute (, as well as the government agency that I chair, The Illinois Council for Responsible Fatherhood ( Similar organizations are needed everywhere. Both organizations offer resources to educate fathers to deal with their emotions, and to assist them in times of crisis.

The stress of divorce is well-known. However, it is manageable and should not lead to killings. Instead of focusing on those three men who allegedly committed unforgivable crimes, we should look at our society and our attitudes towards the role of fathers after separation and divorce and correct these unhealthy stereotypes.

Jeffery M. Leving is the author of two ground-breaking books, Fathers’ Rights and Divorce Wars. He co-authored the Illinois Joint Custody Law and has made frequent appearances as an expert legal analyst and commentator on CNN, CNBC, MSNBC, FOX National News, and ABC News. He is the Chairman of the Illinois Council on Responsible Fatherhood, President Emeritus of the Fatherhood Educational Institute and Publisher of

For more information, visit

Monday, April 27, 2009

Jack Straw furious at civil servants' bid to sabotage open justice

In New Zealand the family court is kept secretive by the feminist adoring Judge Boshier and the twisted anti male media.If only people could read about the terrible injustice going on behind the insidious closed walls of the evil NZ Family Court ,then they would be shocked at the widespread extent of the cruel injustice!! I wonder how many shafted fathers suicide this year Judge Boshier? What a sick hateful Nation. Proud to be a kiwi- yeah right!!

Meanwhile in the UK Jack Straw has expressed his fury after civil servants tried to block his flagship battle to bring greater openness to the family courts.

read more | digg story

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Family courts open to media with reporting restrictions intact

April 27, 2009
Frances Gibb, Legal Editor

Thousands of family courts are opened to the media for the first time today, amid fears that stringent reporting restrictions will make a mockery of the reform.

Britain’s most senior family judge, Sir Mark Potter, has warned that courts will face a deluge of media applications to report cases and see documents, which could lead to a “damaging” inconsistency of approach by courts.

Ministers had failed to issue guidance on how judges should deal with media requests, despite being urged to do so by High Court judges, Sir Mark, President of the Family Division, said. He issued his own briefing to courts to avoid inconsistent decisions up and down the country.

Where issues cannot be resolved, they will have to be referred urgently to the High Court for a test ruling, he said.

He predicted that courts would face detailed legal argument on human rights, public and private interests, the welfare of children and the meaning and application of the law.

There are increasing concerns that the landmark opening of the family courts may prove a damp squib pending legislation to remove reporting restrictions. Jack Straw, the Justice Secretary, has indicated that he intends to legislate to deal with reporting restrictions, but there is no imminent slot in the timetable.

Under the changes, judges will have wide discretion to exclude the media or to restrict reporting. There is also no media right to see documents relied on in court.

The Society of Editors, the Newspaper Society and individual media organistions have protested to Mr Straw, saying that if reporting restrictions are not lifted the effect will be to nullify the entire purpose of the change and the Government’s stated aim of openness and accountability.

The media’s role as the public’s eyes and ears would be completely subverted because the cases where there was most acute public concern — those involving taking children into care — would remain unreportable.

Nigel Hanson, media lawyer with the solicitor Foot Anstey, said: “The rules still give courts wide powers to exclude the press and even, where access to the courtroom is allowed, very little of genuine interest to readers is likely to be actually reportable.”

He said that although accredited media representatives would be entitled to attend hitherto private family proceedings in the county court and High Court, there was no right to attend adoption or “placement” proceedings or judge-assisted conciliation or negotiation hearings.

Courts will have the power to exclude journalists if it is felt to be in the interests of the child; for the safety or protection of a party, witness or person connected with a party or witness; for the orderly conduct of proceedings; or because justice would otherwise be impeded or prejudiced.

Judges can exclude the media of their own volition or in response to a request by the parties or a witness.

Although journalists must be given the opportunity to make representations against exclusion, there is no right of appeal. They can challenge exclusion only by way of a judicial review, which could take months. In the meantime, the family hearing will not be delayed.

Even where journalists are admitted, they are bound by strict reporting restrictions to protect any identification of children, without special permission.

Mr Hanson said: “In short, the new rules may facilitate a novel experience for reporters to see what goes on in family hearings but they are unlikely to produce much usable copy.”

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Cat women arrested after publicity stunt.

'Cat Woman' arrested after publicity stunt
A firefighter escorts a woman dressed as Cat Woman down from the water tower at the Cookstown Outlet Mall Saturday. She scaled the tower to hang a protest banner.
April 25, 2009
A woman dressed as Cat Woman climbed to the top of the water tower at the Cookstown Outlet Mall Saturday afternoon and unfurled a banner in the name of Fathers for Justice.
Firefighters from Bradford West Gwillimbury used an aerial ladder truck to climb to an upper platform of the tower to bring the unidentified woman down.
Before the ladder was raised a lone firefighter climbed up the tower’s metal and spoke with the woman for about 10 minutes.
A large banner the woman hung from the side of the tower, which overlooks Highway 400, proclaimed the cause of Fathers for Justice, a group that has criticized Ontario’s Family Court system as being unfair to divorced fathers.
The banner read: Parental Alienation Awareness; Love is For Everyone.
The woman was escorted down the fire truck’s ladder as dozens of mostly bemused spectators looked on.
When she reached the parking lot she was immediately arrested by South Simcoe Police officers, who escorted her to a waiting cruiser.
A mall maintenance worker said it wasn’t clear how the woman managed to access the tower’s ladder to carry the large banner to the top.
The ladder is locked from the bottom and is raised six feet from the ground for safety reasons


Friday, April 24, 2009

UN document fails to mention men or fathers!


The so-called "Human Rights Committee" (HRC) is the world's highest human
rights appeal court (although it cannot enforce its decisions). In addition
to being a court, it also monitors the compliance of all signatory countries
with the ICCPR (International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights). It
does this by requiring signatory countries to submit a report on their
compliance at regular intervals.

A human right lawyer in New Zealand has submitted an "Alternative Shadow
Report" to coincide with the New Zealand Government's report which the HRC
is due to consider later this year. I don't disagree with most of what he
says, although he is grossly sexist and anti-male (as are most human rights
lawyers) and omits any mention of men and fathers.

I suggest that you go to the page and click on the
blue triangle/arrow next to your country's name, see what stage your
government is at, and consider submitting an alternative shadow report on
men's/fathers' rights in your country, to coincide with the next time that
your country submits a report. Of course, you should also send copies of
your report to the media, academics etc., and put it onto the Web.

You should read the ICCPR and carefully
make all your statements refer to one or more of the articles of the ICCPR.

Peter Zohrab

New Zealand's gendered mortality Female Subjectivity as
Standard for Law & Policy
International Men's Day 3/4 of boys sexually
exploited by women
Gender & Domestic Violence Judge
says abortions illegal

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Russian journalist blasts 'Big Brother Britain'

A Russian journalist believes the level of surveillance is worse in ‘Big Brother Britain’ than it was in Russia during the Soviet era.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Politics of Domestic Violence

The Politics of Domestic Violence  
By Reuben Chapple
The feminist-driven “domestic violence industry” is part of an ever-expanding, tax-funded “bureaucracy of compassion” with its attendant caregivers, social workers, regulators, intellectuals and social scientists.
Its use of the term “domestic violence” rather than the more gender-neutral “relationship violence” is based on the Marxist analysis of gender relations penned by Marx’s collaborator Friedrich Engels which presupposes a male 'oppressor' ("Within the family, man is the bourgeoisie, woman and children the proletariat") and a female ‘victim.’

Feminists with a strong emotional investment in the presumption of an oppressive patriarchy base their assessment of men as “the violent sex” on police, court, hospital and refuge data while waving away numerous academic studies implicating both sexes equally in relationship violence. These seriously troubled sisters will cite police blotter statistics and other official data to falsely conclude that relationship violence is a male problem ("That’s just part of how 'they' treat 'us' as women").
There are a number of compelling reasons why a man might be reluctant to complain to authorities that his wife assaulted him. These include fear of ridicule or being disbelieved; threats that if police are called his wife will level a counter-accusation and he'll be the one arrested by an establishment predisposed to take her part; a reluctance to walk out of the home that he probably paid for; the likelihood that access to his children will be denied by a gender-biased Family Court should he leave to escape the violence; and fears for the children's physical safety if he's no longer around to  protect  them from a violent mother.

One of the saddest accounts of male victimisation by a violent female was that of an army drill sergeant in the United States, who placed his gun in his mouth at the dinner table and blew his brains out in front of his family, after the contrast between his macho parade ground persona and the reality of his miserable existence became too much to bear.

New Zealand has a network of Women’s Refuges but not a single Man’s Refuge. And if a man did show up at a Women’s Refuge seeking relief from a violent female partner, do you think he’d be admitted? Like police blotter statistics, “refuge data” clearly have significant limitations in terms of providing an accurate picture of relationship violence in our community.
US researcher, Dr Martin Fiebert has examined 155 scholarly investigations, 126 empirical studies and 29 reviews and/or analyses in concluding that women are as physically aggressive, or more aggressive, than men in their relationships with their spouses or male partners. The aggregate sample size in the reviewed studies exceeds 116,000 and can safely be regarded as statistically robust. Fiebert’s annotated bibliography, first published in Sexuality and Culture Volume 8, Number 3-4, Summer-Fall 2004, can be viewed online at

Contrary to the demonstrably false feminist picture of relationship violence, men and women are implicated in relationship violence in approximately equal numbers at all levels of severity as assessed by a standardised "Conflict Tactics Scale.” Both sexes are more or less equally represented in every category from throwing a teaspoon all the way up to murder. In some categories (e.g. punched, kicked, hit or slapped one's partner), female involvement slightly outstripped that of males.

Approximately one third of violent incidents were found to be "he assaults her," one third "she assaults him," and one third "they assault each other.” Most of what is categorised as "relationship violence" was found to be occasional, low level, and didn't result in serious injury, i.e. shoving, pulling, slapping, throwing small objects etc.

The most violent individuals, whether male or female, represent a tiny minority of those studied. Severely violent men typically used their fists and feet on spouses or partners. Severely violent women characteristically used weapons to even up the size difference or attacked spouses or partners when they were asleep or otherwise off-guard.

British family care activist, Erin Pizzey, who set up the first Women's Refuge in England in 1971, had a well-publicised falling out with the Sisterhood after she wrote a book claiming that many women presenting at her Chiswick Women's Refuge were "at least as violent as the men they had left behind" and self-admittedly addicted to the adrenalin rush they got from provoking violent reactions in their male partners, though few enjoyed the violence itself. These women were repeatedly and often seriously verbally and physically violent both to their own children and to other women in the shelter.

The foregoing analysis demonstrates conclusively that relationship violence is in fact a human problem, not a gender issue as the feminist movement would have us believe. The time is long past for society to acknowledge the female contribution to such violence rather than simply blaming males for something women are, on all the evidence, equally involved in.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The public are fast losing patience with thuggish policing

This aggression is no doubt linked to the government's nasty habit of writing laws that prefer the convenience of security forces to the rights of free citizens. But the police are public servants, not government enforcers. Their job is to keep the peace, not clear the streets of dissent.

read more | digg story

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Parent Alienation- 27 years later: Father found daughter online, both were told the other was dead!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Parent Alienation- 27 years later: Father found daughter online, both were told the other was dead!

Parent Alienation- 27 years later: Father found daughter online, both were told the other was dead!

PAS at it's worst!

Thank God for the internet!!

Video - Breaking News Videos from

Daughter finds out the truth.. moves to America to find her father and starts her search by putting out an ad, online!

Shes pregnant and now the alienation will not go another generation - God bless this woman and her baby, may they enjoy their new found truth - EACH OTHER!

May the mother that alienated these two rot in hell!

I'd bet my last dollar this is the reason that snake judge debra silber tried to gag me -
by intnetionally violating my constitutional right to mention my children's names online under the circumstances of my case!

She (judge debra silber) chose to ignored her own boss's (Judge Judit Kaye's) ruling on SUNSHINE IN THE COURTS - INCLUDING FAMILY MATTERS except in severe cases including blah blah blah NOT MY CASE!

See article 78 on the bottom right hand side for more on the unconctitutional gag order to keep my children from knowing the truth.

Judge debra silber and the rest of you helping mr. louis m. argenziano keep my children from me- may you all rot in hell for what you are doing to my children's minds-and what you did to me!!!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Australia - Family Court admits problems with enforcement

 At least the Australian Family Court admits problems with custody rights, meanwhile the New Zealand let down for children Judge Boshier and his feminist Family Court puppets are doing their insidious best to help many forced Family Court male clients commit suicide.

Family Court admits problems with enforcement

The head of the Family Court admits there are problems with the enforcement of custody rights.

The issue's been highlighted by the case of George Betsis, a Sydney father who spent almost two weeks on the run with his son in the US.

Family Court of Australia Chief Justice Diana Bryant, has told Andrew Moore enforcement has been a problem throughout the court's history.

“It’s not that judges don’t want to enforce orders,” she said.

“I mean, people often see it as the court not wanting to enforce its own orders. I mean, of course we want them to be complied with.

“If the court’s been criticised for not enforcing its orders, why would we want that criticism.”

UK - Marriage is on the way out

Thursday April 16,2009
By Sarah O'Grady, Social Affairs Correspondent
YOUNG women are putting babies before marriage, a snapshot of modern Britain showed yesterday.
And critics blamed Labour’s 12 years in power for this erosion of traditional ­family values.
For the first time ever, there are more ­unmarried ­women ­under 30 with children than there are married women in this age group.
Nearly a third of women aged between 25 and 29 are unwed mothers while less than a quarter of their peers are married, according to the ­figures from the Office for National Statistics.
Since Labour came to power, at least 4,000 fewer marriages have taken place every year, leading to a 111-year low.
Between 1996 and 2006 some 40,000 fewer marriages were recorded.
Experts said Labour’s constant political ­meddling and tax breaks for single mothers have given many women an incentive to shun a traditional married family life.
Norman Wells, of the Family Education Trust, said the Government must take its share of the blame for stripping away tax benefits and most legal privileges that used to go with marriage. “The Government is stubbornly refusing to follow the evidence. Yet to formulate public policy on the assumption that all ­relationships are of equal value to society is to fly in the face of the facts.”
He pointed to statistics that show children who are brought up by lone parents or cohabiting ­couples are more likely to suffer poor health, do badly at school, and fall into crime, or alcohol and drug abuse.
Lone parenthood is subsidised by a benefits system that means three out of four couples would be better off apart. Some single parents are £100 a week richer than couples in similar circumstances.
Thanks to Labour, single mothers can claim a raft of benefits as well as a payment each time they have another baby. They are eligible for income ­support of £47.95 to £60.50 a week as they are unable to ­work because they care for their children.
Anyone on income support qualifies for free dental care, free prescriptions and free school meals.
They are also entitled to the maximum council tax benefit, which essentially means they don’t pay any.
Housing benefit, too, is available to cover rent for those living in local authority accommodation. Robert Whelan, of the Civitas think-tank, which has charted the decline of marriage, said: “Government has not just ceased to support marriage, it puts barriers in the way.
“There is the widely known state bias against marriage. ”
The shift was revealed by the ONS in its annual Social Trends study which asked women about events in their lives before they reached 25.
The younger they were, the less likely they were to have ­married or given birth. Almost a third of 25 to 29-year-olds were unwed mothers, but only 24 per cent of this age group were married.
Nearly half (45 per cent) of women in their mid-to-late 30s married before they were 25, while a third were mothers by that age. In the 55 to 59 age group, three-quarters were married before 25 and more than half (51 per cent) had had children.
Only 237,000 couples married in 2006 – the lowest since 1895.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Sue Reid: Smacking laws were never about the real issue of child abuse

Sue Reid: Smacking laws were never about the real issue of child abuse

This in the NZ Herald today.

It is a shame that we have a Families Commission that is driven by ideology rather than listening to families.

Chief commissioner Jan Pryor espouses her beliefs that "positive parenting should never include a smack" (Herald, April 3).

Her so-called justification for the anti-smacking laws are inflammatory and continue to vilify good parents who may use a smack as part of good parental correction.

As a mother of two young children, I resent the constant barrage that fully funded, power-packed organisations such as the Families Commission can constantly deliver from their lofty soap-boxes.

One can be left wondering who represents mums like me who are focused on the task of raising good, law-abiding and positive contributors to society. Like many other mums, I know that I wish to parent within a sensible legal framework and we owe it to good parents to get this law right.

The new flawed law has tried to link a smack on the bottom with child abuse of the worst kind and has put good parents in the same category as rotten parents who are a danger to their kids and to society.

Not surprisingly, the child abuse rate has continued unabated, with 12 child abuse deaths in the 21 months since the law change - the same rate as before the change. The smacking laws were never about addressing the real issue of child abuse but to undermine and criminalise good parents.

Contrary to Pryor's comments, the new law did introduce a new criminal offence - smacks for the purpose of correction, no matter how light, are a crime.

Police reports show four prosecutions in a six-month period for "minor acts of physical discipline" and report a 200 per cent increase in families being investigated - yet fewer than 5 per cent were serious enough to warrant prosecution.

And there has been a huge 32 per cent increase in CYF's notifications, but the cases warranting further investigation haven't increased - in other words, valuable resources and time are taken away from the front line to deal with the real cases of abuse.

Family First NZ has plenty of evidence on its website of families being investigated and traumatised for complaints of light smacking, including parents who are referred to CYF by so-called helping agencies when they are simply seeking help, and of children ringing CYF to complain about their parents - imagine what that is like for a family.

Pryor asks families to seek help but in a culture of being labelled "lowest common denominator", this will do nothing to support and foster good parenting.

She says "there is no legal justification for the use of force to correct a child's behaviour", so why does "positive parenting" not include correction? As a mother I need to be able to teach my child right from wrong and it is an ongoing process to "correct" my child's behaviour - society expects me to fulfil this role.

We can all lament the daily cases in the media whereby individuals have not "corrected" their behaviour and have become a blight on society. Many parents would testify to aspects that are less than positive in the training of a child for the adult world.

I am sure the child does not see "time out" in a positive light nor see grounding as positive. Parents are often seen in negative light when they proceed with knowing best what will work for their child.

The role of parent is set apart from other relationships such as in the workplace or a sports team. Parents have the reserved responsibility to raise, train and shape the will and character of their child to maturity. Adults have already mastered that task - so the argument that Pryor puts forth about smacking another adult is null and void.

It is important to progress through to a referendum in July. This issue continues to be a strong, unresolved matter for most parents. After all, this was a citizens' initiated referendum and the democratic process needs to complete its cycle by asking the voting public, "should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence?"

People who don't like the question in the referendum simply don't like the answer they come to.

Organisations such as the Families Commission would better serve families when they consider the attitudes, needs and requirements of families rather than using their government-funded weight to impose a flawed ideology on to good, healthy, functioning families.

* Sue Reid is a researcher and writer for Family First NZ.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

After divorce, Mum gets to pay maintance,28124,25317529-5001942,00.html

After divorce, Mum gets to pay maintenance

Stacey L. Bradford
April 15, 2009

Article from: The Australian

AMY Williams, 38, never imagined she would end up a single mother of two paying maintenance to a former husband.

Yet that's where the media executive found herself when her 10-year marriage dissolved in 2004.

During the early years of the relationship, Williams (whose name we changed due to privacy concerns) supported her husband while he completed his PhD in history.

The assumption, she says, was that he would find a job in academe. That day never arrived. He was unable to find work but also didn't want to be the primary caregiver for their children. So Williams paid for child care.

When the two decided to part ways, it quickly became clear that Williams wouldn't be able to simply walk away. Why? According to family law, Williams was the primary breadwinner and her husband was viewed as a dependant who needed help getting back on his feet.

With the help of a mediator, the couple reached a financial agreement: in addition to splitting their assets, Williams agreed to give her former husband $US15,000 ($21,000) for a car and pay $US14,000 in financial support spread out through 14months.

"My feeling was that I worked hard while he was trying to figure out a career," says Williams.

"I was penalised for that during the marriage and then after it ended."

You don't have to be as successful as Britney Spears or Reese Witherspoon to fear getting sued for maintenance. Like Williams, more and more women today are obligated to pay their former husbands some form of financial support, says celebrity divorce attorney Raoul Felder.

Wives are the primary breadwinners in one in three marriages, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, and therefore at risk of having to pay maintenance should the union fail. "Call it the dark side of the liberation coin," says Felder.

Historically, it was men who were obligated to pay, based on the assumption that women couldn't support themselves, says Alan Feigenbaum, co-author of The Complete Guide to Protecting Your Financial Security When Getting a Divorce. This was indeed the case back in the 1950s and '60s, when most wives were homemakers and cared for the children. In the '70s, however, society and divorce laws shifted. Women entered the workforce in larger numbers and family laws regarding marital support were made gender neutral.

What has not significantly changed, however, is that women are the primary caregivers of the children. So not only are these wives supporting their husbands, they're also caring for the children.

Today, men and women are equally eligible for some form of payment if one is dependent on the other for financial support, regardless of who takes care of the kids.

But here's some good news for women who hold the purse strings: the days when judges would easily grant long-term support are over, says Feigenbaum, especially for marriages that last less than than 10 years.

Typically the dependent spouse is granted temporary maintenance based on the length of the marriage or what's called rehabilitative support until he can get back on his feet. During this time the underemployed spouse may go back to school for another degree or get career training to update outdated skills.

In Williams's case, she desperately wanted her husband to find a job. But the law favours the status quo. In other words, since Williams allowed her husband to stay home while they were together, she was obligated to continue to support him until he could pay his own bills. This situation is not much different than when a woman says she gave up her career for the kids but has a full-time nanny," says Daniel Clement, a New York-based divorce attorney.

Despite gender-neutral laws, women do have at least one thing in their favour. Even when the law says dependent husbands are entitled to financial support, some lawyers say they have seen a stigma facing those who ask for support.

"When judges see a man asking for alimony they think: 'What's wrong with you?"' says Sandra Morgan Little, past chairwoman of the American Bar Association Family Law Section. Some men say they feel the stigma, as well.

When John Bailey (not his real name), a 31-year-old graduate student, got divorced he chose to walk away with nothing. He didn't even take the 50 per cent of the marital assets to which he was entitled.

He felt the assets were his wife's property since she earned them while he studied.

"At the time I had no income," he says. "It was bad. But I didn't want to be that guy who was getting alimony from his ex-wife."

Not all women will get off so easily. Nor should they, lawyers argue. If women want equality in the workforce, they will also have to take on the responsibilities attached to a higher salary, Little says.

In cases of divorce, that responsibility is paying maintenance.

Fight for Mel Gibson's fortune:

Mel Gibson's wife of 28 years has filed for divorce, setting the stage for one of the most expensive marriage break-ups in legal history. Under Californian law, Robyn Gibson could take half of her husband's £640million fortune.

read more | digg story

Friday, April 10, 2009

Judge's injustice is righted—23 years later

The courtroom was silent Wednesday when Circuit Judge Vincent Gaughan acquitted Nathson Fields of murder, a quiet final act for an infamous murder case involving judicial corruption unprecedented even for Chicago's sordid history of graft and greed.

read more | digg story

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Family Court destroys dad's precious daughter!

Happy 6th birthday young girl, welcome to your worse nightmare.

Hi I am your court appointed lawyer and I am the first cousin to the people seeking court protection from your deadbeat dad. Just remember young lady to say 'bad dad' and all will be fine.

Hi I am your court appointed psychologist and we will keep you safe from your evil dad, because you are a 'client' of the Family Court. She protests but I love dad deeply. Never say that young girl, never, never, never because police have put your nasty dad in jail.

Hi and happy 14th birthday teenager says the two faced lying Family Court judge, you are now going to live with your dad, because we can’t control you anymore. We will lift the protection order so he can be awarded custody.

Dad gets the damaged 'client' and no one from the judiciary helps him try and repair the damage done by years of hideous brainwashing.

Hi police it’s d4j again can you put my daughter on the missing list again, as she stole my car last night and do thank Judge Peter Boshier for his wonderful court that makes once decent kids criminals.

Hi John Key, why do you let such orchestrated injustice for children flourish in New Zealand?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Top Lawyers Required To Tackle The Political Busker

Top Lawyers Required To Tackle The Political Busker
Wednesday, 8 April 2009, 11:44 am
Press Release: Benjamin Easton

Top Lawyers Required To Tackle The Political Busker

In matters before the Wellington Court of Appeal a change of law firm mid-proceedings appears as if the arguments of an unemployed street busker have registered serious concern with the New Zealand Government.

Unemployed Political Busker, Benjamin Easton of a father's coalition has applied to the Court of Appeal in respect of a decision made by Justice Dobson on a matter of whether or not a broadcast by Radio New Zealand , early in 2008, was unlawful and discriminatory against fatherhood. The decision of the judge stated that there was no ability for Mr Easton to draw the Broadcaster and the Broadcasting Standards Authority, who reviewed the principal complaint, to a faulted responsibility or action beyond their duty. Obviously, because he is appealing, Mr Easton disagrees.

"The matter that has not been fully explored by the Court", says Mr Easton, "is that the broadcast was about domestic violence, including children and that instead of treating the information with a responsible respect, a Family Court lawyer has been allowed and encouraged to abuse fatherhood, when presuming that the only perpetrators of domestic violence are men. This is demonstrably wrong. Yet all political or bureaucratic institutions engaged appear to believe that such false claims are an acceptable and reasonable form of discrimination. If such direct discrimination remains as it is protected, what is the protective purpose or function of our human rights law? It appears to me that fatherhood is taking the bash in New Zealand and is a real victim for whom few care."

The new firm taking over from Bell Gully for the BSA is Luke Cunningham & Clere, who are the Office of the Crown Solicitors. "I'm encouraged", furthers Mr Easton "that the new lawyer appointed to the proceedings is a partner from the firm. This means both of the lawyers respectively from NZ on Air and the BSA are partners of top law firms. No one now can lay claim or consider that my submissions are without merit. The Crown is obviously taking the matter very seriously where they are defending on behalf of the BSA".

Asked if the media have taken any interest in the proceedings Mr Easton responds to the irony . "I've been fully ignored" he muses. "Why would the media publish bad things that are being said on their direct deceit of the public? My claim is that the New Zealand Broadcasting and Crown Entities are the primary vehicles of a propaganda that keeps fatherhood in a social recession and men oppressed as if they are the only body necessary to take the blame for domestic violence. Men and fathers are the ultimate kicking posts of a domestically violent society doing its covert best to root out paternalism. NZ on Air funds much of New Zealand 's programming and for them to be legitimately challenged as acting badly or outside the law is an impossible equation for the media".

The matter before the Court of Appeal now is whether or not Mr Easton can pay to secure the cost of these lawyers and if he has any chance of winning. "I would like to think my chances of winning increased with this signal by the Crown. If I had the cash", he adds," then I'd happily tip their hats." The Court can waiver the security.


Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Harry Enfield - Women know your limits

Voices from the grave, betrayed by a restraining order

Voices from the grave, betrayed by a restraining order

Carey Roberts
Carey Roberts
April 6, 2009 
Debi Olson had three restraining orders taken out against her. But that didn't stop the woman from ambushing ex-husband Mauricio Droguett in an Iowa shopping mall last July, fatally stabbing him in front of shocked mall-goers.

Toni Brown of Washington, DC was shot by former girlfriend Raina Johnson on August 12, 2008, leaving the woman paralyzed from her neck down. Johnson is currently serving a 28-year sentence for a crime the judge termed "extraordinarily brutal." A restraining order had been previously issued against the assailant.

Karen Allende of New York City was walking to work on a September day in 2006 when she was attacked suddenly by her husband. She died that morning on the sidewalk, a restraining order folded neatly in her purse.

Each year 2-3 million domestic restraining orders are issued for the purpose of curbing domestic violence. Simply put, these orders of "protection" are a hoax foisted on unsuspecting victims, all at taxpayer expense.

Restraining orders are a travesty for the simple reason that they don't work.

Debi Olson had stalked her ex-husband across the country and worked herself into a lather of spiteful rage. Does anyone in their right mind really believe a piece of page will deter a person who is that intent on killing her former partner?

And a 1994 study published in the American Journal of Public Health followed 150 women in Houston, Texas who had applied for a restraining order. Eighteen months later the researchers found no difference in abuse levels between women who received the order compared to those who did not.

Ruing the lack of benefit, a 2005 report from the Independent Women's Forum noted restraining orders can "lull women into a false sense of security."

Some persons would simply shrug their shoulders, saying there's an example of yet another well-intentioned but useless government program.

But other research shows restraining orders can actually make a touchy situation worse. One Department of Justice report, "Civil Protection Orders: Victims' Views on Effectiveness," found that six months after issuance of the order, the percentage of persons experiencing repeated physical abuse or stalking had doubled, and the number facing psychological abuse had tripled.

So how do restraining orders add fuel to the fire? The reason is restraining orders are often issued on the say-so of the complainant — all she has to do is tell the judge she is "frightened" or "afraid" of her partner — no proof needed.

According to a study published in Cost Management last year, 71% of restraining orders are trivial or false. But according to the Connecticut Office of Legislative Research, "nothing is being done to stop frivolous requests for restraining orders."

So how would you feel if you were booted from your house and told you couldn't see your kids because your partner happened to be feeling blue that day?

Other times a restraining order is part of a calculated effort to gain a tactical edge during a divorce action. A 2005 article in the Illinois Bar Journal revealed restraining orders are "part of the gamesmanship of divorce." Elaine Epstein, former president of the Massachusetts Bar Association, once confided, "Everyone knows that restraining orders and orders to vacate are granted to virtually all who apply."

Tales abound of schemers who violate the terms of the restraining order, heaping even more penalties on the hapless man.

Last summer Marshall Crandall of Vassalboro, Maine got into an altercation with his wife. By the woman's own admission the exchange was mutual: "I picked him up three or four times and slammed him on the ground." But when the police arrived, they arrested only the man and a restraining order was taken out against him.

Once in jail, she visited him on three occasions. Even though she had initiated the contacts, they were seen as a violation of the restraining order. That unwanted attention earned Mr. Crandall nine months behind bars.

By placing the burden of proof on the accused to show his innocence, many worry restraining orders violate fundamental notions of fairness and due process. At one New Jersey seminar, startled judges were told, "Your job is not to become concerned about all the constitutional rights of the man that you're violating as you grant a restraining order. Throw him out on the street, give him the clothes on his back, and tell him, 'See ya' around.'"

Judge Milton Raphaelson of Massachusetts once opined, "Few lives, if any, have been saved, but much harm, and possibly loss of lives, has come from the issuance of restraining orders and the arrests and conflicts ensuring therefrom."

Each year, the Violence Against Women Act spends up to $75 million to promote restraining orders. That's the kind of wasteful federal program that leaves a bad taste in taxpayers' mouths.

Carey Roberts is an analyst and commentator on political correctness. His best-known work was an exposé on Marxism and radical feminism.
Mr. Roberts' work has been cited on the Rush Limbaugh show. Besides serving as a regular contributor to, he has published in The Washington Times,,, Men's News Daily,, The Federal Observer, Opinion Editorials, and The Right Report.
Previously, he served on active duty in the Army, was a professor of psychology, and was a citizen-lobbyist in the US Congress. In his spare time he admires Norman Rockwell paintings, collects antiques, and is an avid soccer fan. He now works as an independent researcher and consultant.

© Copyright 2009 by Carey Roberts

Monday, April 6, 2009


BRIDGET Marks says her nasty custody battle with a philandering ex-lover has transformed her from a buxom nude model into a full-blown political activist.

read more | digg story

UN Commission Ends with Delegations Saying No to Abortion

UN Commission Ends with Delegations Saying No to Abortion

By Samantha Singson
     (NEW YORK – C-FAM)  As the sun rose on the last day of negotiations at the Commission on Population and Development (CPD) at the United Nations (UN) today, delegations were still embroiled in a contentious debate over language concerning “sexual and reproductive health and rights,” which some radical NGOs and UN committees have interpreted and used to promote abortion. As UN member states came together at the closing meeting to adopt the document, delegations took the floor to define abortion out of the document.
     Up until the eleventh hour, the contentious term “sexual and reproductive health and rights” remained in the draft document. Just prior to adoption, Iran took the floor to object to the phrase which has never before been included in any negotiated UN document.  Iran stressed that the term remained problematic for a number of delegations and urged the Commission to revert back to previously agreed upon and carefully negotiated language from the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Program of Action, which is understood not to create any right to abortion. 
     In an attempt to get consensus, the chairwoman from Mexico suspended the meeting and after twenty minutes, returned to the room and announced that Iran’s proposal would be accepted and that the term “sexual and reproductive health and rights” would be removed from the text.  The document was then adopted by consensus.
     Several delegations, however, went further and made statements to explicitly define abortion out of the CPD document and to reiterate that the document created no new rights.  Comoros, Peru, Poland, Ireland, Chile, the Holy See, Malta, and Saint Lucia spoke out against the other remaining reproductive health-related terms such as “reproductive rights,” “reproductive health services” and “sexual and reproductive health” and emphasized that these could not be construed to “support, endorse or promote” abortion.
     Malta’s ambassador stated that his delegation was finding it more difficult in accepting the resolutions of UN bodies like the CPD where there were consistent attempts to expand “reproductive health” to include abortion.  
     Saint Lucia made an explicit objection to the term “safe abortion” because the term could “give the impression that abortion was a procedure completely free of medical and psychological risks.”  Saint Lucia also highlighted a provision in the CPD document which called on states where abortion was legal to “train and equip health service providers and should take such measures to ensure that such abortion is safe and accessible.”  The Saint Lucian representative stressed that her delegation understood this provision did not impact the right of healthcare providers to refuse to perform or be complicit in abortions as a matter of conscience, stating, “Again, no new rights are created or acknowledged in this document, and the universal right to conscience can in no way be overridden or weakened.”
     Only the representative of Norway expressed regret that the term “sexual and reproductive rights” was not accepted in the text, saying that his country had widespread access to abortion and virtually no negative effects on women.
     The CPD will next meet in April 2010.
Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute 
Editor in Chief  –  Austin Ruse
Managing Editor  –  Piero Tozzi
Assistant Managing Editor  –  Hannah Russo
Chief Correspondent  –  Samantha Singson
Contributors� –  Susan Yoshihara / Katharina Rothweiler

© Copyright 2009 Permission granted for unlimited use. Credit required.
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Sunday, April 5, 2009

Mother hit hard in custody case

Mother hit hard in custody case
Judge concludes she ignored court rulings
Apr 03, 2009
Tracey Tyler
A Toronto judge has taken the drastic step of finding a mother of three in contempt of court for flagrantly violating court orders during her relentless campaign to alienate her children from their father.
The woman, known as K.D., lost custody of her daughters in January, but this latest ruling takes the case to a new level, with the 42-year-old chiropodist finding herself on the losing side of a power struggle with the court.
The mother intentionally acted against the best interests of her children by cutting off telephone calls and visits with their father and walking out of counselling sessions, Justice Faye McWatt said in a decision released earlier but withheld from publication until today so K.D., who is self-represented, could read it first.
She has been ordered to pay $35,000 in penalties and legal costs to her ex-husband, 56, a vascular surgeon known as A.L., who was also granted permission to take the girls to a U.S. therapy program designed to undo damage caused by parents who poison children against another parent.
K.D. consented to the calls, visits and counselling sessions ordered by a series of Superior Court judges over eight years beginning in 2000, but “once she left this building, she ignored the orders believing that she could escape scrutiny,” McWatt said.
The mother’s defence was she did not intentionally contravene the orders and it was her children who refused to spend time with their 56-year-old father.
But her claims were contradicted by the children themselves during interviews at the Office of the Children’s Lawyer, McWatt said, noting one daughter said she loved and wanted to see her father, but later refused to get out of her mother’s car for a visit with A.L.
“There is really only one explanation for the children’s attitudes,” the judge said. “It is their mother’s consistent negative influence on them from their early childhood about A.L. and her persistence at excluding them from his children’s lives.”
While courts have been reluctant to make contempt findings against parents who violate court orders even out of spite towards another parent, what sets this case apart is the mother consented to the orders then adopted a “you can’t touch me” attitude, said Harold Niman, A.L.’s lawyer.
“What needs to be clear is that you can’t assume every case of access difficulties means there is alienation or even contempt,” Niman said in an interview. “But once a court gets to the stage of determining it is wilful disobedience of an order and … something is being done ... to hurt the children, I think this case makes it very clear a court will not hesitate to step in.”
A.L. told the court that K.D. insisted on setting rules for visits with his daughters, including her being in the car when he drove them to school. In 2005, he only spent time with them when K.D. decided he should pay to take her and the children on holidays.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

CYF are that dysfunctional they are dangerous to all children

CYF apologises over handling of 'sex list'

Child, Youth and Family (CYF) has finally apologised to parents of girls targeted by two Whangarei brothers on a "sex list".

The pair, aged 11 and 13, outlined in the list what sexually explicit things they wanted to do to certain young girls.

The list was passed in August 2006 to a CYF social worker by the boys' mother, but nothing was done about it for over a year, the Northern Advocate reported.

A number of girls on the list were allegedly molested.

One man whose daughter was targeted told the paper at least 28 girls were allegedly abused or targeted by the boys whom he described as "sexual predators".

Police had at one stage said an allegation of the boys touching a girl through her underwear was "minor" offending and low priority.

"I'm thinking to myself, 28 girls? What is top priority then?"

When CYF did decide to act, it used a community meeting to let parents know what was happening.

Deputy CYF chief executive Ray Smith said this week the social worker in the first instance might not have taken the list seriously enough.

He agreed the department didn't act fast enough and had let down the girls and their families.

"I think the social worker...looked at a list and wasn't sure whether these were the acts of fantasy, a game of two boys," Mr Smith said.

He also said in hindsight a community meeting was not the right forum to report back on the case and that the families should have been personally contacted.

Mr Smith said he apologised over the handling of the situation and the length of time taken to address it.

"I've asked for a full review of this case by the chief social worker to identify where individual accountability should sit."

Police said the matter was still under investigation.


Thursday, April 2, 2009

Australia - Fathers praise access law

Quote: Wayne Butler of the Shared Parenting Council, which was established in 2002 to push for legislative change that would largely benefit fathers,said the law was quite clear: "that children are entitled to a relationship with their dad, and it's good to see the Family Court coming around to that".

Pity the low down Peter Boshier( NZ Principal Family Court Judge)could not give a stuff about the terrible plight of done over men. I wonder how many kiwi men involved in the gender bias - unfair Court of lies kill themselves this year? The New Zealand Family Court is a sinister sick machine of hatred!!!,25197,25272581-5013404,00.html

The Australian
1 April 2009

Fathers praise access law
By Caroline Overington

The Family Court has undergone a radical change in direction since the Howard government's changes to the Family Law Act came into effect, and the emphasis is now firmly on the rights of fathers to have relationships with their children after separation and divorce.

Wayne Butler of the Shared Parenting Council, which was established in 2002 to push for legislative change that would largely benefit fathers, said the law was quite clear: "that children are entitled to a relationship with
their dad, and it's good to see the Family Court coming around to that".

Mr Butler was responding to a report in The Australian yesterday in which Family Court judge Robert Benjamin removed two children, aged nine and seven, from their mother in Tasmania, with whom they had lived since the couple separated in 2005, and sent them to live with their father in

The mother had been the primary carer of the children since birth. The father left Tasmania for Melbourne in 2006. He had access to the children on holidays, but the "changeovers" had become fractious and his daughter was becoming estranged from him.

The judge said the mother had not encouraged her children to have a good relationship with their father.

Under changes to the Family Law Act (1975) introduced by the Howard government, the Family Court is required to apply the presumption that it is in the best interest of the child for the child's parents to have shared
and equal parenting responsibility, unless there is violence.

Solo Mums Australian convenor Elspeth McInnes said Justice Benjamin had not taken into account psychological damage to the children, who had lived solely with their mother since 2005.

"From the child development perspective, it seems extraordinary," Dr McInnes said.

"It seems the judge is saying that mothers must make their children happy to see their fathers, or else they will be punished. I don't think such punishment has any regard to the children's wellbeing."

Mr Butler said the changes to the act meant fathers were getting better outcomes than they had previously.

"You're better off now with a judge than you were before, and you're better off than you would be, if you just accept what your former partner gives you," he said.

Patricia Merkin, who advocates on behalf of women in Family Court disputes, said the changes were "nothing less than a social engineering experiment to respond to the so-called bias against fathers".

Barry Williams of the Lone Fathers Association said he dealt every week with fathers "attempting suicide ... because they can't see their children".

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Barbara Kay, Using kids as weapons

Using kids as weapons
Barbara Kay, National Post 
Wednesday, April 01, 2009
Last weekend, I attended the Canadian Symposium for Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), Canada's first international conference on a form of child abuse that can be as bad as, or even worse than, sexual and physical abuse.
For the "show, don't tell" version of what the presentations added up to, read A Kidnapped Mind (Dundurn Press, 2006), by former model and journalist Pamela Richardson, who spoke at the symposium. Richardson wrote the book after her 16-year-old son, Dash Hart, neither drunk nor drugged, threw himself off Vancouver's Granville Street Bridge on New Year's Day, 2001.
Although Richardson was unaware there was such a syndrome until well into a 12-year custody ordeal as a "target parent," her detailed chronicle of a remorseless campaign to "disappear" her from Dash's life by his narcissistic father is the human face behind the evils described in the PAS literature.
The late psychologist and researcher Richard Gardner said of PAS, the term he coined in 1985, "I have introduced this term to refer to a disturbance in which children are obsessed with deprecation and criticism of a parent --denigration that is unjustified and/or exaggerated."
PAS goes far beyond the moderate alienation that frequently accompanies high-conflict divorce. The denigration of the target parent in PAS is not sporadic, impulsive and reality-based ("Your mother is such a flake"), but a vicious, consciously sustained and materially baseless campaign.
For example, in his presentation, Montreal psychologist Dr. Abe Worenklein, a specialist in PAS (he has testified at 600 trials), cited the case of a brainwashed boy who, witnessing in court, could no longer recall a single activity he'd ever done with his mother, but "knew" she'd given every man on their street a blow job. To the alienator, the child is a weapon. Hatred of the ex always trumps the child's rights and mental well-being.
PAS-level alienators -- whether male or female, the pattern of behaviour is identical -- are typically so pathologically consumed with anger triggered by rejection, that they are beyond the reach of reason or moral suasion. More than just punishing, they wish literally to wipe out the target parent's existence.
To this end, alienators will cut the target parent's face out of family photos, banish all mention of his name or refuse to speak of him as "dad" (soon the child "de-parents" this way, too). Alienators exhibit an overwhelming sense of entitlement with no fear of courts. In Richardson's case, her ex blithely ignored all access orders. During one year when she was supposed to have "joint custody," she saw Dash for exactly 24 hours.
Alienators show the children court documents (a divorce no-no) and enmesh them in the legal process ("Should we ask for sole custody?"). They intercept messages and gifts from the other parent, then deny they were sent. They shun the target parent at school and sports events. They isolate the child from extended family and friends of the target parent, imputing fictional sins to all and sundry associated with her.
Critics of PAS fret that the syndrome is being exploited by abusive parents as a ploy to enforce visitation or custody of justifiably resistant children.
However, abused children present a notably different affect from the alienated. An abused child is reluctant to discuss what has been done to him and must be coaxed to reveal his secret. Even then, he doesn't express hatred of the abusing parent, as he longs for a healed relationship.
By contrast, a PAS child exhibits classic symptoms of brainwashing, acting in robotic alignment with the alienator. (At 12, Dash wore his father's clothes to court.) He is eager to badmouth the target parent. But he uses locutions and accusations obviously uploaded into him by an adult. Dr. Worenklein recalled four alienated siblings who parroted the exact same words in their baseless denunciations of their target parent.
Removal of the child from the alienator for a period of time--even three months, ideally a year -- can effectively begin reversal of the brainwashing effect and restore a relationship with the target parent. Nevertheless, time does not heal the wounds left by the theft of the lost years. From the victimized parent's point of view, a child's death is -- in some sense -- kinder than permanent alienation, for death is beyond parents' control and brings closure to hope.
PAS is a crime of calculation and opportunity, but alienators need enablers in the legal and social service systems. And they get them, as Dash's father managed to do, time after time. Yet legal consequences for access order violation could be the single most effective deterrent to marginalization of the target parent. Since alienators will never compromise, custody should revert to the parent most willing to co-operate with the other parent on time spent with the child.
Happily, Canadian case law is trending toward acknowledgement of the syndrome. PAS has been part of the decisions in 74 court cases since 1987, 53 in the last eight years.
One PAS-responsive judge wisely noted: "Hatred is not an emotion that comes naturally to a child. It has to be taught."
If teaching hatred of the other parent had been written into B. C. family law as grounds for a reversal of custodianship in 1987, Dash Hart would be alive today. His martyrdom should count for something. The sobering message I drew is that vigorous advocacy for alienators by legal and social service professionals in the divorce industry is complicity with child abuse. If the "best interests of the child" is not to remain an empty mantra in the family law system, it must stop.
For more information on PAS, visit: