Mothers Of Lost Children – Indiana

Support for Noncustodial Indiana Moms

Don’t Be Fooled By The “Shared Parenting” Scam

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Seen on another site…it applies here.  Dr. Flood is in Australia, where they are already experiencing their own shared parenting disaster in courts.  His letter could very well apply here, because it is happening:

The misguided agendas of fathers’ rights groups

You are being bombarded at present with mass e-mails from fathers’ rights advocates urging you to adopt a ‘rebuttable presumption of equal parenting time’. Taking advantage of the same ‘e-mail megaphone’ system they have set up, I am writing to urge you to reject this proposal.

The proposed presumption of joint residence will, ostensibly, enhance shared parenting of children after divorce and separation, a goal with which few could argue. However, in practice it is likely that the changes will do little to encourage shared parenting. There are at least five problems with the presumption.

First, the proposed rebuttable presumption of joint custody is unnecessary: there are no formal legal obstacles to parents sharing the care of children after separation and divorce. Family law already endorses the principle of shared parenting, stressing that children have the right to know and be cared for by both their parents and that parents are jointly responsible for their children. Separating parents can make arrangements for shared residence, and small numbers do.

Second, the parents to whom this legal change would apply are those least able to set up shared parenting. The small minority of separating parents who reach the courtroom are often experiencing the most intractable and bitter conflicts, face issues of violence and abuse, and are the least likely to be in a position to share residence and parenting of their children.

Third, one size does not fit all. The best interests of the child, a key principle in family law, would be compromised by any presumption of a specific type of custody arrangement. The proposed law would undermine the ability and flexibility families need in order to develop parenting arrangements which best fit their children.

Fourth, the introduction of a presumption of joint custody is likely to increase the use of litigation to rebut the presumption, stretching the resources of the Courts and government.

Finally, a legal presumption of joint custody is likely to expose women, children and men to higher levels of violence. This prospect is particularly troubling given that there are already cases where the practice of family law privileges parental contact with children over children?s safety.

Promoting fathers? positive involvement with children is a laudable goal. But it will not be achieved by ill-considered changes in family law.

I have provided further detail on each of the above five points in the document contained here: http://www.xyonline.net/downloads/Joint_custody_DP59.pdf. And see the documents on the following website for my further discussion on how to promote fathers’ positive involvement in their children’s lives: http://www.xyonline.net/articles.shtml#father. Finally, see the following for critiques of the false claims made by fathers’ rights groups e.g. about women’s use of false allegations of domestic violence or child abuse.

Sincerely,

Dr Michael Flood
Postdoctoral Fellow
Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society (ARCSHS)
La Trobe University
E-mail: michael.flood@latrobe.edu.au
Ph. (02) 6125 9703 (BH)
PO Box 4026, Ainslie ACT, 2602 AUSTRALIA

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