The
Fatherhood
Coalition

For Immediate Release

Shared parenting bills to be heard at State House

Fatherhood Coalition warns of resistance movement


BOSTON, Sept. 25 – Six bills designed to promote shared parenting arrangements following family breakup will be heard by the Judiciary Committee today. The public hearing will be held at the State House at 1:00 pm in Room A-1.

Fathers and children’s rights advocates will be out in full force, some flying in from Washington, DC, to give testimony in support of the bills.

The bills, all relating to shared parenting issues, are: Senate Bill 1075, Senate Bill 940,  House Bill 3191, House Bill 2646, House Bill  2464, and House Bill 2101.

 

Anti-father, anti-family law and practices prevail in family law


“Should the legislature fail to act, we intend to endorse a resistance movement. These men have had enough.”

Mark Charalambous, Coalition Spokesman


Twenty-four million children live in homes without their biological father.     The Fatherhood Coalition contend that for over thirty years, social policy on gender and family issues has been driven by women’s groups who have focused on empowering women, seldom in the true best interests of children and always to the detriment of fatherhood. As a direct result, the Coalition maintain, we are witnessing unprecedented levels of social pathologies due to the deliberate and systematic discarding of fathers from the lives of their children.

Children from fatherless homes account for:

§         70% of juveniles in state-operated institutions (U.S. Dept. of Justice, Special Report).

§         71% of pregnant teenagers (US Dept. of Health & Human Services).

§         63% of youth suicides (U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services, Bureau of the Census).

 

Shared parenting proven to enjoy popular support

In a little-noticed sidebar to the 2002 general elections in Massachusetts, citizens in four towns in Bristol County voted overwhelmingly in favor of a non-binding "public policy" ballot initiative. Of 11,820 votes cast, 61% voted in favor of for shared parenting after divorce or separation.

The ballot initiative illustrates the concepts inherent in shared parenting; it read:

"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, (1) the court shall presume that both parents have an inalienable right to share temporary and permanent legal as well as physical custody of the children; (2) the children shall have the right to reside and spend an equal amount of time with each parent; and (3) if equal time is neither practical nor possible, the right of each parent to a minimum guaranteed amount of time per year with the children shall be established and protected by the courts?"

 

Fathers in Great Britain embrace civil disobedience

Though some leaders in the father’s rights community are anticipating a banner day for father’s rights, pledging that committee members will hear an abundance or impassioned and well-informed testimony, the Fatherhood Coalition is concerned that the desperation experienced by so many fathers may surface at the hearing.

According to Coalition Spokesman Mark Charalambous, “This year in Great Britain the exasperation of divorced fathers has reached a boiling point. The fathers there have committed two incidents of non-violent direct action this month, occupying a bridge and tying up traffic for miles. Additionally, they have issued a 40-day ultimatum that unless the government acts by October 20 to address the crisis and reverses the laws and policies that deprive them of their children and effectively criminalize them, they will initiate more such actions nationwide.”

According to a spokesman for the British organization, Fathers 4 Justice (F4J): “Thousands of supporters are prepared to embrace civil disobedience to highlight the epidemic of mass fatherlessness in the UK. If our demands are not met within 40 days we will launch an unprecedented ‘rising’ against every court in the UK that continues to fail to act in the best interests of our children.”

The coalition is putting the legislature on notice that many fathers in Massachusetts are no longer willing to wait for legislative action.

“Based on our knowledge of what’s going on in the father’s rights community, we expect the movement to take the same direction here.” Charalambous said. “These men have had enough.”

“Should the legislature fail to act, we intend to endorse a resistance movement,” he said.

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For further information, contact:

 

Mike Franco
CPF Co-Chairman
mv_franco@juno.com
(413) 295-DADS

Mark Charalambous
CPF Spokesman
brontis@thecia.net
(978) 840-0268

 

 

CPF / The Fatherhood Coalition
617-723-DADS

A non-profit, all volunteer organization of men and women advocating for fatherhood since 1994


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