ACTION ALERT: Support CA AB 2416--Child Custody Reform to Help Parents Who Serve

MA. Anti-NCP Bill Opposed by F & F Dies

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ACTION ALERT: Support CA AB 2416--Child Custody Reform to Help Parents Who Serve; MA. Anti-NCP Bill Opposed by F & F Dies
March 30, 2010
Top Stories
Action Alert: Support CA. AB 2416—Child Custody Reform to Help Parents Who Serve

California AB 2416 will help protect the loving bonds that servicemembers share with their children—to email and fax a letter in support of the bill, click herePlease send your letter whether you are a California resident or not.

Fathers and Families has worked closely with the American Retirees Association, Assemblyman Paul Cook, and others on AB 2416, which will be heard in committee on Tuesday, April 6.

At Fathers and Families we receive many letters from divorced or separated military servicemembers with painful but preventable family law problems.

Many parents serving in Afghanistan, Iraq, or other distant locales are anguished that custodial parents have impeded or completely eliminated their contact with their children. When the deployed soldier calls his children at the court-specified time, nobody answers. Letters are written, but they never reach the children.

Needless to say, it is extremely difficult for a deployed servicemember to effectively overcome this visitation interference. Given the length and frequency of current deployments, many soldiers lose all contact and sometimes even their relationships with their children, particularly if the children are young.

Other servicemembers return from serving to find that while they once had a custody arrangement which allowed them to play a meaningful role in their children’s lives, the new custody arrangement allows them only a marginal role, if any role at all. To regain their previous custody arrangement they must engage in costly, time-consuming litigation, which increases conflict and dissipates much of the time and money that they would otherwise be spending on their children.

AB 2416 will address these problems in several ways:
AB 2416 authorizes courts to issue orders granting grandparents, stepparents and extended families the ability to exercise a deployed soldier’s normal parenting time. By encouraging courts to issue such orders, we allow children to preserve their loving bonds with their deployed parents, and also protect the important relationships children share with their grandparents, stepparents, and other extended family. AB 2416 will substantially reduce the current problem of deployed servicemembers being unable to enforce visitation/contact orders.

AB 2416 creates a rebuttable presumption that when a military parent is deployed, upon his or her return, child custody and visitation orders will revert to the original order. This protects the crucial role these parents play in their children’s lives, and helps prevent a military parent from having to re-litigate their case.
To send a letter to Sacramento in support of AB 2416, click here.

ab 2416America was greatly moved by deployed sailor Bill Hawes’tearful reunion with his little son and little Siri Jordan’s reunion with her divorced father Dan Jordan. AB 2416 will help protect precious relationships like these.

Fathers and Families’ legislative representative Michael Robinson and assistant legislative representative Nicole Silverman have spent months lobbying legislators and gathering support for AB 2416.  F & F is creating real, tangible family court reform today, but our deep, professional involvement in Sacramento requires money–contribute to the organization which fights for you by clicking here.

Together with you in the love of our children,

Glenn Sacks, MA
Executive Director, Fathers and Families

Ned Holstein, M.D., M.S.
Founder, Chairman of the Board, Fathers and Families

Heroic Nanny Runs Through Fire Barefoot to Save Little Boy

Nanny“[I]t’s just one of those things you can’t put any value on…There’s no price to be paid. It’s a debt that will never be able to be repaid.”

From Hero nanny badly burned while saving boy, 5 (, 3/26/10):
The young woman sat in a wheelchair, her feet swaddled in special bandages for burns, her right arm and hand also heavily bandaged. Snuggling under her left arm was a 5-year-old boy who looked up at her frequently and from time to time caressed her fingers.

This was Friday morning, three days since the boy, Aden Hawes, had last seen his nanny, Alyson Myatt. Which was just after she had run barefoot through a wall of flames to save his life.

“I love her so much,” Aden told TODAY’s Ann Curry Friday from Kentucky’s University of Louisville Hospital, where the heroic nanny is recovering from burns she received during the courageous rescue. “I miss her when she’s gone.”

The words made the 22-year-old Myatt smile and choke back a tear or two. That was something she found herself doing frequently as she recounted how she awoke Tuesday morning to find the house on fire and Aden trapped in his room with flames running through the carpeted hallway outside his door.

Fire officials said there’s no question that Myatt’s fearless actions saved Aden’s life and allowed him to come through the experience unscathed.

J.B. Hawes, a single parent who hired Myatt two months ago to be a live-in nanny, joined her and Aden at the hospital and choked back some tears of his own. He had been in Minnesota on business when the fire broke out and rushed home Tuesday.

“I came straight to the hospital and saw her on the bed,” Hawes said. “To realize what she did, saved my son’s life, you can’t thank someone for that. There’s nothing you can do to repay them for taking that kind of a risk”…

…at 6 a.m. Myatt awoke to a crashing boom and wailing smoke alarms. The booming sound was that of the fan falling out of the ceiling and hitting the floor after catching fire again.

Myatt jumped out of bed and rushed upstairs in her bare feet...
Read more
Legislative Update
Good News: MA. Bill to Marginalize Noncustodial Parents, Which F & F Opposed, Dies

Fathers and Families opposed and testified against HB 930, a bill supported by the Massachusetts Women’s Bar Association that would have further marginalized noncustodial parents in relation to their children’s medical needs.

Board Chairman Ned Holstein, MD, MS and Deputy Director Melissa Hodgdon testified before the Massachusetts Joint Committee on Financial Services in opposition to the Bill in February. We’re pleased to report that the Bill is now dead–good news for Massachusetts noncustodial parents.
What's Happening?
Fathers and Families Supporter in Sacramento’s Capitol Weekly ‘Children who have been alienated need help’

Child Custody, Parental Abduction, and the Connection to Munchausen's Syndrome by Proxy

 Article on Suicide Misses the Elephant in the Room - Suicide is a 'Male Thing'

Army Wife Divorces Husband, Gets Custody of Son; Neglects to Tell Husband About Divorce; Neglects to Tell Court About Son

In Sweden, a False Rape Claim and Student Parties Show Double Standard at Work

Dad Spends 13 Months in Hospital with Daughter, but Where's Mom?

NYT Parrots AAUW on Alleged Anti-Female Bias in STEM Fields - Again

NC Man Freed by State Innocence Commission After 16 Years in Prison

Website Seeks to Help Those Exonerated of Crime After Time in Prison

When Will Policy-Makers Take Seriously Boys' Underperformance in School?
Kids & Dads
Father: 'I wanted her to be absolutely sure in her mind that I was here for her'

From the New York TimesA Father-Daughter Bond, Page by Page (3/21/10):

"Jim Brozina and his wife had two daughters, Kathy and Kristen.  Jim loved to read to them when they were little, but when the older girl, Kathy, was in the fourth grade, she announced that from then on, she would read to herself, thank you very much.  She didn't need Dad for that anymore.

"But Kristen still wanted her father to read to her, so Jim wasn't totally bereft.  He read to Kristen every night, but as time passed, the dreaded (for Jim) fourth grade approached, the time when Kathy had struck out on her own.  About that time though, both of Kristen's grandparents died, Kathy went off to college and her mother announced she was divorcing Jim.  Jim and Kristen were left with only each other.

"Then, with their family pared abruptly from six to two, Jim proposed the 'Streak.'  He suggested that he try to read aloud to Kristen for 100 consecutive nights.  She agreed, and the thing was easily done; they read every night for over three months without ever missing a night.  But that wasn't enough for her, so Kristen upped the ante - and then some.  With the Streak over, she suggested they go for 1,000 straight nights.  Jim was pleased, but wondered how they'd manage it.  After all, that's over 2 1/2 years without ever forgetting, without ever being apart, without ever being sick.

"Still, they embarked on the new Streak...In all, Jim read to Kristen for a total of 3,218 days, nights, mornings, afternoons.  For almost nine years, they never missed a day..." Read more
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Volunteer Testimonial

"There is nothing more meaningful that we can do to ensure that our children will flourish than to protect their relationship with both parents. The National Parents Organization focuses on significant, practical changes to family law that will protect every child's right to the full, loving involvement of fit parents. The National Parents Organization offers the opportunity to be effective in making changes that will protect the parent-child relationship when parents live apart."

By Donald C. Hubin, Ph.D., Chair, Ohio Executive Committee