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Encyclopedia > Fathers' rights

The Fathers' rights movement can be seen as part of the men's movement and/or the parent's movement, it emerged in the 1970s as a loose social movement providing a network of interest groups, primarily in western countries. It is primarily interested with family law and issues affecting non-custodial fathers, mothers, and victims of paternity fraud, including child custody sometimes after divorce, child support, and paternity. The movement is particularly strong in the United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Italy, United States, New Zealand and Australia. The movement received international press coverage following the formation and high profile style activism of the Fathers 4 Justice group in the UK. Image File history File links Nuvola_apps_important. ... The mens movement is a social movement that includes a number of philosophies and organizations that seek to support men, change the male gender role and improve mens rights in regard to marriage and child access. ... American Civil Rights Movement is one of the most famous social movements of the 20th century. ... A network is a social structure made of nodes which are generally individuals or organizations. ... An interest group (also called an advocacy group, lobbying group, pressure group (UK), or special interest) is a group, however loosely or tightly organized, doing advocacy: those determined to encourage or prevent changes in public policy without trying to be elected. ... Family Law was a television drama starring Kathleen Quinlan as a divorced lawyer who attempted to start her own law firm after her lawyer husband took all their old clients. ... Main articles: Paternity (law) and Paternity testing Paternity fraud, the term, came into common use in the late 1990s describing the act of falsely naming a man to be the biological father of a child when the mother knows (or suspects) that he is not the biological father, particularly for... Child custody and guardianship are legal terms which are sometimes used to describe the legal and practical relationship between a parent and his or her child, such as the right of the parent to make decisions for the child, and the parents duty to care for the child. ... It has been suggested that Divorcee be merged into this article or section. ... In many countries, child support or child maintenance is the ongoing obligation for a periodic payment made by a non-custodial parent to a custodial parent, caregiver or guardian, for the care and support of children of a relationship or marriage that has been terminated. ... Paternity is the social and legal acknowledgment of the parental relationship between a father and his child. ... Fathers 4 Justice Logo Fathers 4 Justice (or F4J) began as a fathers’ rights organization in the United Kingdom. ...


It is related to both the men's rights movement and informed by masculism with some participants see it as a corollary to the women's rights and children's rights movements. It is also related to populism, as it often works against government abuses of power. Its advocates see the movement's encouragement of shared parenting as complementary to, and not at odds with, equity feminism's goal of more equal parenting involvement by both parents contrary to the belief that only women possess a strong parental instinct (that is a Maternal bond). Mens rights is a stream in the mens movement. ... Masculism (also referred to as masculinism) is a number of ideologies found in the streams of the mens movement. ... The term women’s rights typically refers to freedoms inherently possessed by women and girls of all ages, which may be institutionalized or ignored and/or illegitimately suppressed by law or custom in a particular society. ... The childrens rights movement was born in the 1800s with the orphan train. ... Shared parenting refers to a family arrangement in child custody or divorce settlements, in which the care of the children is equal, or more than substantially shared, between the natural parents. ... The maternal bond is typically the relationship between a mother and her child. ...


The fathers' rights movement arose with changes in both the law and in societal attitudes, including:

  • The introduction of no-fault divorce in the 1960s, resulting in a rise in divorce rates throughout the world.
  • The increasing entry of women into the public sphere, a situation which has upturned traditional gender roles which view women as primarily domestic in nature.
  • The increasing social acceptance and prevalence of single parent households. The number of single parent (particularly war widow) households increased after World War II, and more recently increased social welfare and income support arrangements became more generally available.

Fathers' rights campaigners argue that their own and their children's rights and best interests are breached; they cite research[1]to argue that even after separation and divorce, children gain critical mental and emotional health benefits from continuing quality involvement by and with their father. Fathers' rights activists state that it is destructive to deny children the right to know and be cared for by both parents when both are available. No-fault divorce is the dissolution of a marriage, upon petition to the court by either party, without the requirement that the petitioner show fault on the part of the other party. ... The public sphere is a concept in continental philosophy and critical theory that contrasts with the private sphere, and is the part of life in which one is interacting with others and with society at large. ... A bagpiper in Scottish military clan-uniform. ... Combatants Allied Powers: United Kingdom France Soviet Union United States Republic of China and others Axis Powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Winston Churchill Charles de Gaulle Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Chiang Kai-Shek Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tojo Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33... ... This does not cite its references or sources. ... The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view. ...


Critics of fathers' rights groups claim that they are anti-women and harmful to children involved in custody cases as they argue that women lack power in the existing patriarchal systems, including family law. Fathers rights activists claim that it is the opposite, that family law is feminist, matriarchal, and that women win almost all cases, proved by official figures, and declared to be so by judges and other governmental sources. All seem to agree that it is the unfortunate children who suffer most from the lack of cooperation. Misogyny () is hatred or strong prejudice against women. ... A patriarch (from Greek: patria means father; arché means rule, beginning, origin) is a male head of an extended family exercising autocratic authority, or, by extension, a member of the ruling class or government of a society controlled by senior men. ... Family Law was a television drama starring Kathleen Quinlan as a divorced lawyer who attempted to start her own law firm after her lawyer husband took all their old clients. ... A matriarchy is a tradition (and by extension a form of government) in which community power lies with the eldest mother of a community. ...

Contents

Supporters

In the 1980s Parents Without Rights was formed by scientists at Kennedy Space Center. In the 1990s, the Million Dads March Network was formed in Topeka, Kansas, United States. Parents without rights is a political interest and support group based in Florida, United States that campaigns for the reform of family law. ... Merritt Island and Kennedy Space Center The John F. Kennedy Space Center (KSC) is the NASA space vehicle launch facility (spaceport) at Cape Canaveral on Merritt Island in Florida, United States. ... The Million Dads March Network was formed in 2002 by Thomas Lessman. ... This article is about the state capital of Kansas. ... Official language(s) none Capital Topeka Largest city Wichita Area  Ranked 15th  - Total 82,277 sq mi (213,096 km²)  - Width 211 miles (340 km)  - Length 417 miles (645 km)  - % water 0. ...


Supporters include divorced (and subsequently widowed) Live Aid founder, Bob Geldof, Irish writer and journalist John Waters and ex-UK Home Secretary David Blunkett. Ethiopia, as its borders were in 1985. ... Robert Frederick Zenon Bob Geldof, KBE (born 5 October 1954) [1] is an Irish singer, songwriter, actor and political activist. ... John Waters (born Co. ... The Secretary of State for the Home Department, commonly known as the Home Secretary, is the minister in charge of the United Kingdom Home Office and is responsible for internal affairs in England and Wales, and for immigration and citizenship for the whole United Kingdom (including Scotland and Northern Ireland). ... The Rt Hon. ...


Waters fought a legal case for access to the daughter he had by rock star Sinéad O'Connor, and highlighted what he saw as injustices in the treatment of men in his weekly column in The Irish Times. Rock and roll (also spelled Rock n Roll, especially in its first decade), also called rock, is a form of popular music, usually featuring vocals (often with vocal harmony), electric guitars and a strong back beat; other instruments, such as the saxophone, are common in some styles. ... Sinéad Marie Bernadette OConnor (born December 8, 1966) is a Grammy Award winning Irish singer and songwriter. ... The Irish Times Building, on Tara Street The Irish Times is Irelands newspaper of record, launched in the late 1850s. ...


David Blunkett resigned as Home Secretary on 15 December 2004 following attempts to remain in touch with his youngest son, born of a relationship with his ex-mistress. His efforts, which he mentioned in an interview with the BBC[2], unwittingly made him a champion of the fathers' rights movement. Mr. Blunkett said about his son, "He will want to know not just that his father actually cared enough about him to sacrifice his career, but he will want to know, I hope, that his mother has some regret." The Rt Hon. ... The Secretary of State for the Home Department, commonly known as the Home Secretary, is the minister in charge of the United Kingdom Home Office and is responsible for internal affairs in England and Wales, and for immigration and citizenship for the whole United Kingdom (including Scotland and Northern Ireland). ... December 15 is the 349th day of the year (350th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Background

Family law, divorce and child support

The Monthly Vital Statistics Report May 21, 1991 (NCHS, 1991), showed that from 1975 to 1988, in families with children present, wives file for divorce in approximately 2/3 of the cases each year. In 1975, 71.4% of the cases were filed by women, and in 1988, 65% were filed by women. Family Law was a television drama starring Kathleen Quinlan as a divorced lawyer who attempted to start her own law firm after her lawyer husband took all their old clients. ... It has been suggested that Divorcee be merged into this article or section. ... No-fault divorce is the dissolution of a marriage, upon petition to the court by either party, without the requirement that the petitioner show fault on the part of the other party. ... In many countries, child support or child maintenance is the ongoing obligation for a periodic payment made by a non-custodial parent to a custodial parent, caregiver or guardian, for the care and support of children of a relationship or marriage that has been terminated. ...


Fathers' rights advocates frequently cite studies [3], and conclude that when women anticipate a clear gender bias in the courts regarding custody, they expect primary residence and the resulting financial child support, maintaining the marital residence, receiving half of all marital property, and gaining total freedom to establish new social relationships[3]. States whose family law policies, statutes or judicial practice encourage joint custody have shown a greater decline in their divorce rates than those that favor sole custody[3].


Application of family law

See also: Advocacy, Single parent, and Sociology of fatherhood

Due to roles whereas the mother is the primary giver of child-care and the father a stronger commitment to work and providing financially, fathers can be denied what is perceived as a caring role but required to maintain their financial support through child support in continuing pre-existing arrangements in care and income generation[citation needed]. Thus many claim to seek an increased involvement with their children, some to the extent of shared parenting and sole custody. In response to difficulties in achieving satisfactory arrangements a number of those affected men have become involved in the fathers' rights movement. Advocacy is an umbrella term for organized activism related to a particular set of issues. ... A single parent is a parent with one or more children, who is not living with the child[ren]s other parent. ... The Sociology of fatherhood is a subbranch of sociology which studies gender role in society, with particular reference to the parental role of the father. ... In many countries, child support or child maintenance is the ongoing obligation for a periodic payment made by a non-custodial parent to a custodial parent, caregiver or guardian, for the care and support of children of a relationship or marriage that has been terminated. ... Shared parenting refers to a family arrangement in child custody or divorce settlements, in which the care of the children is equal, or more than substantially shared, between the natural parents. ...


Critics of the movement have argued that since most men still earn higher incomes, and most mothers stay at home with young children or provide the most care even when working, it makes sense to award primary custody of young children to women more often than to men.


Support provided by fathers' rights meetings

At the local level, many fathers' rights groups spend a large portion of their time providing support for newly separated fathers. In many cases these groups also campaign for a greater consideration of the rights of grandparents and women (especially step mothers) in second marriages.


Fathers' rights group meetings have an ethos of self-help. Some fathers advocate their own cases with some success, but problems can easily arise at times where self-representation occurs with delays and attempts to address issues outside family law[4].


Main beliefs and goals

Fathers' rights activists typically believe that the application of the law in family courts is biased against men.


Family law and the family court

Many Fathers' rights activists assert that the application of family law is Kafkaesque, with secretive in camera hearings and long delays which grant mothers initial custody, then delay final resolution. The Trial book cover This article is about the novel by Kafka. ... In camera (Latin: in chamber) is a legal term meaning in secret. It applies to court cases (or portions thereof) to which the public are not admitted. ...


Irish singer and political activist Bob Geldof has written on the subject of the extended length of time for family courts to resolve issues: Robert Frederick Zenon Bob Geldof, KBE (born 5 October 1954) [1] is an Irish singer, songwriter, actor and political activist. ...

Shared parenting advocates argue that the family court system is slow and delays endemic. This allows a status quo to be established which many courts are reluctant to later modify. As the process labors on it becomes difficult to alter. Shared parenting advocates argue that this is unfair. It is then deemed in the child’s interest not to break this routine at the cost of losing sight and touch of their father, we must really examine all our assumptions without fear. Then we can move to building a more equitable system benefiting all equally. (from The Real Love that Dare Not Speak its Name: A Sometimes Coherent Rant)

Fathers' rights activists argue that time would be better spent dealing properly with the trauma of the parents' initial separation and allowing the children to maintain their relationships with both parents continuously.


The adversarial court system

Main article: Adversarial system

The adversarial system, such as currently exists in the UK, encourages each parent to identify their fears, real or imagined, about what will affect their children now that the parents have separated. Some hold that when a parent expresses these fears about the other parent in this circumstance, even when fears are unfounded, they can nevertheless be treated as fact. Fathers' rights campaigners believe this system is biased toward believing the mothers' expressed fears. The father must then try to demonstrate that he presents no risk to the children, and that the advantages that he will confer on them are real. Although such considerations can play a part in making compassionate decisions about children in the aftermath of a family break-up, fathers' rights activists believe the law as it currently stands in the UK takes on a wider remit by linking the interests of the child with those of the mother. The adversarial system (or adversary system) of law is the system of law, generally adopted in common law countries, that relies on the skill of the different advocates representing their partys positions and not on some neutral party, usually the judge, trying to ascertain the truth of the case. ...


Fathers' rights proponents say that in such circumstances, the case can easily become a witch-hunt. Any aggression that the father may have manifested in the past can be claimed as justification for limiting his involvement in his children's upbringing. If he is inexperienced at parenthood, or because this is a first child, the result may be that he is initially not trusted to provide basic care. In one case in the UK in 2003, a judge ruled that it was in a child's "best interests" to have no contact with her father, because such contact caused the mother to feel depressed and anxious. A second judge, Mathew Thorpe, said that while he had "every sympathy" for the father, he could not overturn the original ruling. Lord Justice Thorpe added "It's also a tragedy for the child, who is being denied an ordinary right to know her father and develop understanding, interests and affection with him."[5]. Aggression is sometimes used to intimidate and coerce during extremely rigorous physical training. ... The Rt Hon Sir Mathew Alexander Thorpe (30 July 1938 -) is one of the senior judges in the Court of Appeal of England and Wales (also known as the Lord Justices of Appeal of England and Wales) where he was appointed on 5 June 1996. ...


Many fathers' rights campaigners say they have had experiences that follow a similar pattern, and they are aiming that the law should be changed to prevent situations such as theirs from arising.


Fathers' rights activists further claim the idea of adversarial court cases to resolve family disputes has led to a sub-culture they consider to be completely absurd. They may also question the assumption that it can ever be legitimate for the state to collude in disrupting a loving and natural relationship between a father and his children.


Kevin Thompson, a non-custodial father in Massachusetts, has written a book called "Exposing the Corruption in the Massachusetts Family Courts," which details his journey through a judicial system he feels is "anti-father." The book is highly critical of the judge in his case, Judge Mary McCauley Manzi. Judge Manzi later issued an order restraining the book's distribution, on the grounds that it violated the involved minor's right to privacy[6]. It seems unlikely that Thompson will obey this order, and the book appears to still be available in both print and PDF formats[7]


Child custody/residence and parenting time

On child custody, a priority on continuity of care and/or residence leads to primary custody often being awarded to the mother. However the arrangements prior to the relationship breakdown presupposed a number of factors, stereotypically, fathers being the primary breadwinner and mothers the primary carer and presupposed other things such as daily contact between fathers and their children. Currently family law in the U.S. and UK awards primary custody to mothers more often than it does to fathers, reducing many divorced fathers' involvement in their children's lives to the role solely of providing financial support, with minimal parental involvement when the mother demands this. Best interests or best interests of the child is the doctrine used by most courts to determine a wide range of issues relating to the well being of children. ... Child custody and guardianship are legal terms which are sometimes used to describe the legal and practical relationship between a parent and his or her child, such as the right of the parent to make decisions for the child, and the parents duty to care for the child. ... Shared parenting refers to a family arrangement in child custody or divorce settlements, in which the care of the children is equal, or more than substantially shared, between the natural parents. ... In Family Law, residence is an Order of the Family court under s8 Children Act 1989 following the breakdown of a marriage and determining where the child(ren) are to live and with whom. ... For the general principles, see Residence in English law Shared residency, or joint residency, refers to the situation where the child(ren) of parents who have divorced or separated reside(s) with each parent at different times, and each parent has equal status in law. ... Child custody and guardianship are legal terms which are sometimes used to describe the legal and practical relationship between a parent and his or her child, such as the right of the parent to make decisions for the child, and the parents duty to care for the child. ...


Fathers' rights argue that children tend to do better if they are nurtured by both parents, they believe children's normal cognitive development (particularly that of very small children) and identity formation are dependent on a level of relationship with traditional significant others, including their father. Longitudinal studies tend to support this[8][9]. Significant other Significant Other is the second album by Limp Bizkit, released on June 22, 1999. ...


The argument for shared residency is in conflict with the view that it is generally in the children's best interests to maintain a living situation close to what they knew pre-separation, the "single base" argument. In the increasingly rare situation where the mother was a stay-at-home mother who ended her career to raise children, equal timeshare would require that mother be encouraged to return to the workforce to support her children or that father worked less hours in order to maintain truly "equal" timesharing. Recent research (cf. Flouri and Buchannan) has shown that father involvement is more important to children's welfare than having a single base, and the argument of preserving the status quo prior to the parents splitting can be based in part on how much time the father spent at home with his children before the split, as well as on how much involvement he is able to have in future. Best interests or best interests of the child is the doctrine used by most courts to determine a wide range of issues relating to the well being of children. ...


When the two parents have earning's capacities that are unequal, then the lower earning parent can become further disadvantaged in having to provide adequate "equal" housing for their "equal" custodial time without equal means (income) to do so. When remarriage occurs, especially when mothers remarry, it is argued by Fathers' rights activists that the mother's household income should be offset against his child support contribution in order to preserve equal living standards in both the children's homes.


In situations where the two parents are willing to parent collaboratively, equal or shared parenting can be a distinct advantage for the children, and in addition, the Court of Appeal has ruled[10] that this advantage is conferred regardless of the prior level of collaboration between the parents, especially since it is the stress associated with the break up of the family and the parents' perceived unequal distribution of power inherent within an adversarial court system that strongly contribute to their hostility.


Where clear guidance is provided in a court at the outset regarding outcomes, the result is less hostility and a reduced workload for the courts.[11] Fathers' rights campaigners claim that vested interests in the legal trade are politically operative to preserve lawyers' revenue streams from this type of business. Judicial powers already exist to endeavor to ensure that continuity is maintained in relationships between children and fathers. Interim contact orders can be issued before the establishment of a routine that excludes the father from the children's lives.


On abusive relationships, implacable hostility and parental alienation syndrome

Where relationships have become abusive, such abuse often continues even after the partners have separated. Where one or both ex-partners are in an emotional turmoil negotiations to ensure that the children are properly taken care of can be volatile. Where there is implacable hostility, it is claimed, this can manifest itself in a way that affects children, one partner obstructing the children's right to family life[12] in respect of that child's relationship with the other parent and/or extended family. Use of the legal system to this end does occur. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Parental Alienation is any behaviour by a parents, a childs mother or father, whether conscious or unconscious, that could create alienation in the relationship between a child and the other parent. ... Parental Alienation Syndrome is a putative disorder proposed by Richard Gardner as a disturbance in which children are obsessively preoccupied with depreciation and/or criticism of a parent. ... Implacable hostility arises after separation or divorce and denotes the attitude shown by one parent to another in denying access to, or contact with, their child(ren). ...


Domestic violence

Many domestic violence studies, particularly those based on the Conflict Tactics Scale, conclude men and women commit acts of violence in equal numbers[13] and Fathers' rights advocates reject inferences that portray women solely as victims and men solely as perpetrators[14]. The belief that courts fail to prosecute false allegations of domestic violence in divorce and custody disputes is seen to encourage such accusations as a tactic. Thomas Kasper writes in the Illinois Bar Journal, domestic violence measures funded by VAWA readily "become part of the gamesmanship of divorce." Fathers' rights and men's rights activists seek to better protect real victims of domestic violence by reducing false accusations. Phyllis Schlafly in a September 2006 article "Laughing at Restraining Orders"[15] identifies the misuse of domestic violence injunctions in divorce and child custody disputes and notes the basis for many domestic violence injunctions are absent any physical violence, such as the injunction issued to David Letterman by a woman 2000 miles away, that he had never met, who claimed she was harassed by his subliminal messages to her. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Allegations of domestic violence are frequent in post-divorce/separation situations. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... The Conflict Tactics Scales (CTS) is a widely used method of identifying intimate partners maltreatment, with a version for the identifying of child maltreatment. ... Allegations of domestic violence are frequent in post-divorce/separation situations. ... The Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA) was passed as Title IV, sec. ... The mens movement is a social movement that includes a number of philosophies and organizations that seek to support men, change the male gender role and improve mens rights in regard to marriage and child access. ... Phyllis Schlafly (born on August 15, 1924, in St. ... David Michael Letterman (born April 12, 1947 Indianapolis, Indiana) is an American television personality, late night talk show host, comedian, television producer, Indy Racing League car owner and philanthropist. ...


In response to a 2003 government initiative in the UK to reduce domestic violence, fathers' rights campaigners have argued that situations where assault has occurred should be dealt with by traditional courts, and only actual convictions taken into account in child proceedings[citation needed]. Social policy reformers have pointed out that domestic violence can be an insidious phenomenon and that evidence other than that of convictions might also be valid[citation needed]. Fathers' rights campaigners believe that the lowered thresholds for what types of conduct can be construed as violent will be used in child proceedings to make allegations of violence against them on more tenuous grounds than would have been acceptable previously. They note a report called Contact and domestic Violence: the Experts' Court Report by Sturge & Glaser in 2000, which indicates that contact can be denied even when no domestic violence had actually occurred, but where there was fear that it might. The Sturge & Glaser report indicates that it is a risk to allow a parent-child relationship to continue where the application for contact results in stress to the child or child's carer: Proceedings often mean a standstill in the child's development while his or her carer's emotional energies are taken up with the case and the child is only too aware that he or she is the centre of attention and somehow responsible for this and the resulting distress. This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...


Issues with language

Some fathers' rights campaigners argue that parenting time should be used indiscriminately to replace contact, visitation and residence. The term visitation is particularly objectionable to fathers' rights activists, who believe that this term reinforces the idea that only one parent raises the children. It is perceived that there is a stigma associated with treating one parent as resident and the other as non-resident. The term absent parent is felt by many to be particularly pejorative. Other terms which have raised the hackles of fathers' rights activists include single parent family - the preferred term here being single parent household, based on the truth that there are always two parents to a child. Male role model and father figure are other terms which campaigners feel are used as unacceptable euphemisms for father. Some have also called into question the term biological father.


In the UK

Fathers 4 Justice in 2003 brought the cause of fathers' rights into the mainstream media for the first time, and as a result new UK legislation was implemented in 2005[citation needed]. Families Need Fathers is a recognized body and regularly provides evidence to parliamentary sub-committees, with one senior Family Court judge noting it was a "key player in the debate about on-going contact and joint residence"[16]. The fathers rights movement in the UK consists of a number of diverse pressure groups, ranging from charities (whose activities are regulated by the Charity Commission) and self_help groups to civil disobedience activists, who started to obtain wide publicity in 2003. ... The Child Support Agency is a UK Government Executive Agency, part of the Department for Work and Pensions, formerly known as the Department of Social Security. ... Fathers 4 Justice (sometimes abbreviated to F4J) is a campaigning group in the United Kingdom which works for fathers rights. ... Families Need Fathers (FNF) is a registered UK charity, founded in 1974. ...


The family justice system in England and Wales, according to a committee of Members of Parliament on 2 March 2005, gives separated and divorced fathers a raw deal and does not give enough consideration to preserving the relationship between the father and the child[17]. March 2 is the 61st day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (62nd in leap years). ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


The Child Support Act[18] is also seen as giving results against the interests of fathers and their children. Pressure from the fathers' movement has influenced the UK Government, which published a draft Children (Contact) and Adoption Bill in February 2005[19] that aims to widen judges' powers in dealing with parents who obstruct their ex-partner from seeing their children.


In the USA

See also: Child support in the United States

Fathers rights activists often point to Title IV-D of the Social Security Act[20], which provides financial incentives to states for collection of child support, as having created a financial incentive for states and courts to deny them custody. They argue that the financial incentives, which are often conveyed upon local courts based on the total number of dollars collected in child support, discourage joint support awards or awards to dads, who often make more than moms. The law governing child support in the United States varies state-by-state; each individual state is responsible for developing its own guidelines for determining child support. ...


Similarly, father's rights groups accuse courts of focusing on collecting child support matching funds sometimes ignore procedural rules and laws. For example, they say that the Oakland County Friend of the Court[21] in Oakland County, Michigan fails to obey Michigan's Friend of the Court Act[22] by ignoring limitations placed on mediators, calling the mediators Family Counselors, and allowing mediators to function as judges or referees without proper legal backgrounds. Similarly, they say that the Ingham County Friend of the Court[23] in Ingham County, MI acts similarly, calling their Family Counselors Conciliators.


Documented father's rights issues in Michigan include one Michigan county Friend of the Court has jailed Robert Parker based on non-existent child support orders, in which the Michigan Attorney General Acknowledged Error.[24] He lost his job and ability to earn income. Doug Richardson[25], the DNA Daddy, has also paid child support to the biological father of one of his sons and been unable to visit the other son, who does not know of his existence.[26] Ruth and Dale Akers almost lost their home after the Wayne County Friend of the Court charged them child support for the child they had together, falsely asserting that the mother of the child was his first wife.[27] Wayne County Friend of the Court improperly charged Terrance Hale child support for a child that wasn't his.[28]


When Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox's Paykids initiative held a contest to encourage kids to make drawings for billboards with the theme of encouraging the payment of child support[29], many fathers felt that the AG was attempting to turn their children against them, and the initiative was promptly dropped.


In 2004, some Massachusetts voters were offered a chance to vote on a non-binding ballot question about creating a legislative presumption for joint physical custody. One such question was "Shall the state representative from this district be instructed to vote in favor of legislation requiring that in all separation and divorce proceedings involving minor children, the court shall uphold the fundamental rights of both parents to the shared physical and legal custody of their children and the children's right to maximize their time with each parent, so far as is practical, unless one parent is found unfit or the parents agree otherwise, subject to the requirements of existing child support and abuse prevention laws?" Of those voters choosing to answer the above or similar non-binding ballot initiatives, 84.5% voted approval and 15.5% voted disapproval. [30] In contrast, in North Dakota, voters rejected a proposed statutory measure by a margin of 56% to 43%.[31] The new section would have provided for joint physical and legal custody unless either parent was ruled unfit by clear and convincing evidence, that parents would have to develop a joint parenting plan, with a court becoming involved only if parents could not agree and that child support payments could not be greater than the actual cost of providing for the basic needs.[32]
Michigan Parent's Rights Activists such as Dads of Michigan[33] and Moms of Michigan[34] seek passage of HB 5267[35], a bill that would allow for a presumption of joint physical custody in the case of divorce as long as both parents live in the same school district, there is no clear and convincing evidence that a parent is unfit, unwilling or unable to care for the child, and makes no changes in child support payments. They held an Equal Parents Week Rally in Lansing, MI in October 2006 in support of the bill.[36]


In Australia

On May 22, 2006, Australia passed a new law titled Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006, which applies to parents who separate or divorce after July 1, 2006. A stated object of this law is to ensure that the best interests of children are met by ensuring that "children have the benefit of both of their parents having a meaningful involvement in their lives, to the maximum extent consistent with the best interests of the child...."[37]


Criticism

As with many social movements, some of the strongest criticisms of men's groups come from other groups and activists. Some feminists and pro-feminist men hold that fathers' rights groups seek to entrench patriarchy and oppose the advances made by women in society. They believe that the biases in family law, family courts and under the various child support arrangements in different places either do not exist, or are such that single mothers are not advantaged to the extent stated, especially in the face of sexism, male privilege and power. Activism, in a general sense, can be described as involvement in action to bring about change, be it social, political, environmental, or other change. ... Feminism is a social theory and political movement primarily informed and motivated by the experience of women. ... Pro-feminist men represent a stream of the modern mens movement sympathetic towards feminism, that is they are pro-feminist. ... Patriarchy (from Greek: pater (genitive form patris, showing the root patr-), meaning father and arché meaning rule) is the anthropological term used to define the sociological condition where male members of a society tend to predominate in positions of power; with the more powerful the position, the more likely it... Family Law was a television drama starring Kathleen Quinlan as a divorced lawyer who attempted to start her own law firm after her lawyer husband took all their old clients. ... A family court is a court convened in the UK to make orders in respect of childrens residence. ... In many countries, child support or child maintenance is the ongoing obligation for a periodic payment made by a non-custodial parent to a custodial parent, caregiver or guardian, for the care and support of children of a relationship or marriage that has been terminated. ... The sign of the headquarters of the National Association Opposed To Woman Suffrage Sexism is commonly considered to be discrimination and/or hatred against people based on their sex rather than their individual merits, but can also refer to any and all systemic differentiations based on the sex of the... Male privilege is a term used to describe the rights alledgedly granted to the male population in society on the basis of their biological sex. ...


Critics, such as Michael Flood, a researcher in gender studies, especially in relation to men and masculinities,[38] see the men's rights movement and fathers' rights movement as the most extreme part of the broader men's movement[39]. According to this view, most fathers' rights advocates have joined the movement as the result of negative personal experience during a divorce or custody battle and not genuine concern for children and as fathers. Many advocates do not dispute the former, but argue that this is due to the fact that many men do not realize legal discrimination until after they have experienced it themselves. Dr Michael Flood is an Australian sociologist. ...


The use of violent and aggressive tactics

Some commentators note abusive strategies undertaken by fathers' rights activists. Michael Flood notes instances when the Australian fathers' rights group the Blackshirts "terrorised recently separated women (and children) in their homes." wearing "paramilitary uniforms and black masks, the men shouted accusations of sexual misconduct and moral corruption through megaphones and letter-dropped neighbours."[40] The Australian government has vowed to "crack-down" on this organization in 2002.[41][42] In 2004 a leader of the Blackshirts was convicted of stalking a divorced mother after he and other men staged demonstrations right outside of her house. [43]


Trish Wilson, writer and freelance journalist, holds that while fathers' rights activists claim they are "only concerned with helping dads see their children", they actually "lobby for presumptive joint custody (a. k. a. shared parenting), seek to reduce protections for battered women" and that they "want laws that would lower their child support obligations".


When US citizen and divorced father Darren Mack[44] allegedly shot and attempted to murder a family court judge and allegedly murdered his estranged wife[45], Trish Wilson claimed fathers' rights activists "let their true colors show" by having "supported" and "excused" [46] what Mack is alleged to have done. In showing they are not concerned with "children" and "fair outcomes" in court as she alleges, Wilson cited fathers' rights activists such as Randy Dickinson (vice-president of the Coalition of Fathers and Families in New York) who included the story about Darren Mack in a letter to a legislator[47] about fathers' rights. In it he included a quote from John F. Kennedy that, "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable". The state police were called when Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver took the message as a threat. Dickinson continued to hold that "they cannot continue to ignore our issues and refuse to provide any relief or accommodation, without encouraging violence from those more inclined to express their frustration and anger in that manner." In an internet newsletter, fathers' rights activist Glenn Sacks said, "Some on the not insubstantial lunatic fringe of the fathers' rights movement see [Mack] as some sort of freedom fighter."[48] Photo of Darren Mack used in Police handout. ... NY redirects here. ... For other persons named John Kennedy, see John Kennedy (disambiguation). ...


In a similar instance, Michael Flood notes how a spokesman for The Men’s Confraternity, after a Perth man gassed to death his three children and himself in 1998 after his visitation was shortened by Family Court, voiced (perpetrator was) probably a decent, hard-working man who was pushed too far by the Family Court.[49]


See also

Men's movement including: The mens movement is a social movement that includes a number of philosophies and organizations that seek to support men, change the male gender role and improve mens rights in regard to marriage and child access. ...

The fathers rights movement in Italy consists of a number of diverse pressure groups, ranging from charities (defined as ONLUS in the Italian Law) and self-help groups to civil disobedience activists, who started to obtain wide publicity in 2003. ... The fathers rights movement in the UK consists of a number of diverse pressure groups, ranging from charities (whose activities are regulated by the Charity Commission) and self_help groups to civil disobedience activists, who started to obtain wide publicity in 2003. ... Fathers 4 Justice Logo Fathers 4 Justice (or F4J) began as a fathers’ rights organization in the United Kingdom. ... Families Need Fathers (FNF) is a registered UK charity, founded in 1974. ... Masculism (also referred to as masculinism) is a number of ideologies found in the streams of the mens movement. ... Mens rights is a stream in the mens movement. ... Child custody and guardianship are legal terms which are sometimes used to describe the legal and practical relationship between a parent and his or her child, such as the right of the parent to make decisions for the child, and the parents duty to care for the child. ... In many countries, child support or child maintenance is the ongoing obligation for a periodic payment made by a non-custodial parent to a custodial parent, caregiver or guardian, for the care and support of children of a relationship or marriage that has been terminated. ... The Child Support Agency is a UK Government Executive Agency, part of the Department for Work and Pensions, formerly known as the Department of Social Security. ... The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (CAFCASS) is a national non-departmental public body for England and Wales set up to safeguard and promote the welfare of children involved in family court proceedings. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... A family court is a court convened in the UK to make orders in respect of childrens residence. ... Family Law was a television drama starring Kathleen Quinlan as a divorced lawyer who attempted to start her own law firm after her lawyer husband took all their old clients. ... This article lists external links to: academic research sponsored research legislative consultation documents law review articles, reported cases, etc. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Fathers rights. ... The Napo is a tributary to the Amazon River that rises in Ecuador on the flanks of the volcanoes of Antisana, Sincholagua and Cotopaxi. ... The examples and perspective in this article do not represent a worldwide view. ... For the Lost episode Maternity Leave, see Maternity Leave (Lost). ... Paternity is the social and legal acknowledgment of the parental relationship between a father and his child. ... Shared parenting refers to a family arrangement in child custody or divorce settlements, in which the care of the children is equal, or more than substantially shared, between the natural parents. ... For the general principles, see Residence in English law Shared residency, or joint residency, refers to the situation where the child(ren) of parents who have divorced or separated reside(s) with each parent at different times, and each parent has equal status in law. ... The Children Act 1989 is a British Act of Parliament that altered the law in regard to children. ...

Significant writers

Bettina Arndt is an Australian sex therapist, journalist and clinical psychologist. ... The Age is a broadsheet daily newspaper, which has been published in Melbourne, Australia since 1854. ... The City of Melbournes coat of arms The central business district of Melbourne, viewed from the north Alternate meanings: Melbourne (disambiguation) Melbourne is the capital and largest city of the state of Victoria, and the second largest city in Australia, with a population of 52,117 in the Central... Warren Farrell (b. ... There are several people called Michael Green, including: Michael Green (cricketer) Michael Green (field hockey) - Field hockey player from Germany Michael Green (humorist) - humorous author Michael Green (physicist) - involved with string theory Michael Green (political expert) - Asia expert on the National Security Council; see NK news article Michael Green (runner... Wendy McElroy is a Canadian individualist anarchist and individualist feminist. ... Glenn Sacks is an American mens and fathers issues columnist and a nationally-syndicated radio talk show host. ... Phyllis Schlafly (born on August 15, 1924, in St. ... Christina Hoff Sommers (born 1950) is an American author who researches culture, adolescents, and morality in American society. ...

Parents/Fathers/Children's rights organizations by nation

Some of the major Parents/Fathers/Children's rights organizations include:

The Mens Rights Agency (operating Australia-wide out of Brisbane) is a support group offering help and community for separated and divorced men and fathers. ... Fathers 4 Justice Logo Fathers 4 Justice (or F4J) began as a fathers’ rights organization in the United Kingdom. ... Fathers and Families is a fathers rights organization dedicated to protecting a childs right to the love and care of each parent. ... The American Coalition for Fathers & Children is a non-profit organization headquartered in Washington, DC that is dedicated to reform of what it sees as the family law system and the dismantling of the divorce industry. ... Fathers For Virginia http://fathersforvirginia. ...

Research

See List of family separation research articles This article lists external links to: academic research sponsored research legislative consultation documents law review articles, reported cases, etc. ...


Books

  • Fathers Rights Survival Guide by Mike L. Weening
  • Fathers after Divorce by Michael Green
  • Shared Parenting Jill Burrett & Michael Green
  • Myth of Male Power by Dr. Warren Farrell
  • Father and Child Reunion by Dr. Warren Farrell
  • The Case for Father Custody (1999) ISBN 0-9610864-6-7 Online copy here
  • Torn Apart: True Stories of Excluded Fathers (2005) by Tim Willis ISBN 1-904977-30-8
  • Fathers' Rights: Hard-Hitting & Fair Advice for Every Father Involved in a Custody Dispute by Jeffery Leving, Ken Dachman
  • GUIDE TO FATHERS RIGHTS by Attorney Ronald Isaacs.
  • Dedicated Fathers Audio Book Series by Marvin L. Chapman

There are several people called Michael Green, including: Michael Green (cricketer) Michael Green (field hockey) - Field hockey player from Germany Michael Green (humorist) - humorous author Michael Green (physicist) - involved with string theory Michael Green (political expert) - Asia expert on the National Security Council; see NK news article Michael Green (runner... There are several people called Michael Green, including: Michael Green (cricketer) Michael Green (field hockey) - Field hockey player from Germany Michael Green (humorist) - humorous author Michael Green (physicist) - involved with string theory Michael Green (political expert) - Asia expert on the National Security Council; see NK news article Michael Green (runner... Warren Farrell (b. ... Warren Farrell (b. ...

Critical of Fathers' rights Movement

References

  1. ^ Paper on child custody at the American Psychological Association website
  2. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4099581.stm
  3. ^ a b c Kuhn, Richard; Guidubaldi, John (1997-10-23). "Child Custody Policies and Divorce Rates in the US". 11th Annual Conference of the Children's Rights Council. Retrieved on 2006-10-05.
  4. ^ O (Children), W-R (A child), W (Children) for an example of an Appeal brought without the assistance of lawyers, but by members of Families Need Fathers and Fathers 4 Justice
  5. ^ http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,3604,961940,00.html
  6. ^ http://independent.org/newsroom/article.asp?id=1697
  7. ^ http://www.lulu.com/content/198514
  8. ^ http://www.apsoc.ox.ac.uk/Biographies/Biography14.html
  9. ^ http://www.apsoc.ox.ac.uk/Biographies/Biography6.html
  10. ^ http://www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk/judgmentsfiles/j2253/father&mother.htm A v A]
  11. ^ http://www.divorcesource.com/CT/ARTICLES/prince1.html
  12. ^ http://www.unicef.org/crc/crc.htm
  13. ^ "Fact Sheet", RADAR -- Respecting Accuracy in Domestic Abuse Reporting (mediaradar.org), October 5, 2006.
  14. ^ Fiebert, Martin S. Examining assaults by women on their spouses or male partners: an annotated bibliography, Department of Psychology, California State University
  15. ^ http://www.eagleforum.org/column/2006/sept06/06-09-13.html "Laughing at Restraining Orders"
  16. ^ http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200304/cmselect/cmconst/uc1247-i/uc124702.htm
  17. ^ http://www.guardian.co.uk/guardianpolitics/story/0,,1428230,00.html
  18. ^ UK Child Support Act
  19. ^ UK Children (Contact) and Adoption Bill
  20. ^ Title IV-D of the Social Security Act
  21. ^ Oakland County Friend of the Court
  22. ^ Michigan's Friend of the Court Act
  23. ^ Ingham County Friend of the Court
  24. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TdtiNkHv2D4
  25. ^ http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/ripoff185578.htm
  26. ^ http://www.fixthefoc.com/new/modules/smartsection/item.php?itemid=33
  27. ^ http://www1.wxyz.com/wxyz/ys_investigations/article/0,2132,WXYZ_15949_5134984,00.html
  28. ^ http://www1.wxyz.com/wxyz/ys_investigations/article/0,2132,WXYZ_15949_5134984,00.html
  29. ^ http://www.wane.com/Global/story.asp?S=2341704
  30. ^ Associated Press. "Results of local, regional ballot questions", Boston.com, 2004. Retrieved on 2007-02-02.
  31. ^ North Dakota Secretary of State (2006-12-04). General Election - November 07, 2006, Statutory Measure No.3. North Dakota State Government. Retrieved on 2007-02-03.
  32. ^ North Dakota State Government. Initiated Statutory Measure No. 3 (Word). Retrieved on 2007-02-03.
  33. ^ Dads of Michigan
  34. ^ Moms of Michigan
  35. ^ Michigan Bill HB 5267
  36. ^ Equal Parents Week Rally in Lansing, MI
  37. ^ Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006
  38. ^ Dr Michael Flood. The Australian National University National: Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health. Retrieved on 2007-02-05.
  39. ^ http://www.xyonline.net/Respondingtomen.shtml
  40. ^ “Deadly weapon”; “Men’s agency tracks beaten wives”, “Males network linked with far-Right groups”, The Courier Mail, 17 August 1996.
  41. ^ BBC News World Edition, Thursday 25 July, 2002, [1]
  42. ^ “Threat to crack down on vigilante group.” The Age, 25 July 2002; “Militants harassed woman, daughter.” The Canberra Times, 6 August 2002.
  43. ^ “Stalker: lesson learned”, Herald-Sun, 30 September 2004.
  44. ^ http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=state&id=4296455
  45. ^ http://news.rgj.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060614/NEWS10/606140341/1002
  46. ^ http://www.renodiscontent.com/2006/06/29/fathers-rights-groups-let-their-true-colors-show/
  47. ^ Darren Mack in a letter to a legislator about fathers' rights
  48. ^ Glenn Sacks, "Some on the not insubstantial lunatic fringe of the fathers' rights movement see Mack as some sort of freedom fighter.", Hisside Newsletter, 19 June 2005
  49. ^ “Father kills three children”, The Sydney Morning Herald, 24 October 1998.

For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... October 5 is the 278th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (279th in Leap years). ... Families Need Fathers (FNF) is a registered UK charity, founded in 1974. ... Fathers 4 Justice Logo Fathers 4 Justice (or F4J) began as a fathers’ rights organization in the United Kingdom. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... February 2 is the 33rd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... For the Manfred Mann album, see 2006 (album). ... December 4th redirects here. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... February 3 is the 34th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... February 3 is the 34th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... February 5 is the 36th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ...

External links

Image File history File links Nuvola_apps_important. ...

Further reading on the web


  Results from FactBites:
 
fathers' rights: Information from Answers.com (4305 words)
Fathers' rights campaigners argue that their own and their children's rights and best interests are breached, they cite research [2]to argue that even after separation and divorce that children gain critical mental and emotional health benefits from continuing quality involvement by their father.
Father's rights activists argue that time would be better spent dealing properly with the trauma of the parents' initial separation and allowing the children to maintain their relationships with both parents continuously.
Fathers' rights argue that children tend to do better if they are nurtured by both parents, they believe children's normal cognitive development (particularly that of very small children) and identity formation are dependent on a level of relationship with traditional significant others, including their father.
Fathers' Rights and Child Custody Law (953 words)
The fathers' rights movement arose in response to the perception that fathers were not being given equal treatment in child custody litigation.
Fathers' rights groups assert that changes of this nature will create a family court environment where both parents are treated fairly and equally, and diminish the effects of legislation and, in some cases, of judicial bias which favors the mother.
Fathers' rights groups also typically point to studies which show that the absence of a father from a child's life can lead to a wide variety of negative behavioral and educational consequences.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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