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For decades, it was a woman’s job to raise kids and a man’s job to pay for them. Our family courts are still forcing those gender roles on people, even when they divorce or separate.

We still see courts making mothers the primary custodians over 80 percent of the time. It’s still a woman’s job to raise the kids, married or not. The same courts send fathers the bills. It’s still the man’s job to pay.

Things are quickly changing. A light of hope arose this week in a surprising place. On April 26, Gov. Matt Bevin signed a new child custody law (House Bill 528) that was initiated by the National Parents Organization. The bill passed both chambers of the state legislature overwhelmingly. Republicans and Democrats spoke with one voice, stating that children deserve the best chance in life, and that means equal access to both parents.

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The state of Kansas’ new Child Support Evaders program functions as a “most wanted″ of those who are behind on their child support payments: the names and faces of parents deemed the worst offenders have their faces and names posted online, complete with the amount they owe, their last known location and contact information.

This is a solution for families, says Gov. Jeff Colyer. But look closer, and the opposite is true — this program hurts, not helps, Kansas families.

This is detrimental to children and parents for many reasons. 

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Those testifying repeatedly called this a “pro-family bill” that didn’t just help fathers or mothers but also the children.

“Research overwhelmingly supports this principle,” said Linda Reutzel. “Equal shared parenting is in the best thing for children…Common sense and research show that the worst thing you can do to a child experiencing the divorce of their parents is to take one of them away.”  

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The Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) claims that we should adopt even more draconian policies to collect child support than we already do by passing the Farm Bill currently before Congress. The National Parents Organization strongly believes that parents should responsibly support their children. But “cracking down” on parents who are poor has a long history of hurting children more than helping them.

Child support policy among the poor does not work for several long-known reasons.

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STANDcast Dwayne Hayes, editor in chief of STAND magazine, is joined by guest Christian Paasch, founder of the Virginia chapter of the National Parents Organization, to discuss shared parenting or shared custody, his experience with the courts, and what states are doing to ensure children have more time with each parent following a separation or divorce. In addition, Christian talks about the work of the National Parents Organization and shares some advice for parents going through the process of ending a relationship.

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The building block of a society is the family. When families break down, thereto goes society.

What is the common denominator that links nearly every social ill in this country? President Barack Obama nailed it when he said the single greatest domestic problem facing this country is the breakdown of the family — i.e. fatherlessness. Broken homes are the source of most of society’s ills. “Unstable homes produce unstable children,” writes Peter Hasson at The Federalist. Children need both parents to grow up well-adjusted.

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The National Parents Organization of Pennsylvania on April 4 announced it is organizing a rally on April 25 at the Capitol Rotunda in Harrisburg.

The event is set to happen at a time when Pennsylvania legislators are considering two bills—House Bill 443 and House Bill 1349—aimed at supporting shared parenting after separation or divorce and combatting parental alienation.

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Should House Bill 4113 pass, Illinois will join several states, including Alaska, Arizona, Idaho, Iowa, Louisiana, Minnesota, South Dakota and Utah, that the National Parents Organization lists as having laws most supportive of shared parenting, while Colorado, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts and Missouri are considering similar legislation.

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