Florida, Massachusetts Call to Action; News From Iowa

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March 17, 2016

NPO Logo National Parents Organization improves the lives of children and strengthens society by protecting every child's right to the love and care of both parents after separation or divorce. We seek better lives for children through family court reform that establishes equal rights and responsibilities for fathers and mothers.
Betrayal on Custody Reform in Massachusetts - Urgent Action
By Ned Holstein, MD, MS, Founder and Acting Executive Director, National Parents Organization

Bar Associations Gut Shared Parenting

The Massachusetts Bar Association, the Boston Bar Association, and the Women’s Bar Association, together with a couple of influential Senators on the Judiciary Committee, have succeeded in gutting the proposed reforms of custody law that were fought out over two years ago by Governor Patrick’s Working Group.

As a result, National Parents Organization must do a U-turn and oppose the passage of S834, also known as H1207. You MUST call your Senators and Representatives today or tomorrow to urge them to amend or defeat this bill, since I do not think it is likely that we can get it changed enough in the committees it must go through before it gets to the floor of the House and of the Senate.

In a classic double-cross, three representatives of bar associations who served on the Working Group pretended to support the bill when we finished our 18 months of work and sent it to Governor Patrick. Then, once the bill got into the Judiciary Committee, they went behind closed doors to do their bloody work.

Here is my analysis of the back-alley knife-job the bar associations did on the wellbeing of children: Read more...

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Call or Email Florida Governor Rick Scott Now!
By Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
Last week, the Florida Legislature passed the most impressive parenting and alimony reform bill in the country this year. It did so by approximately a 2 - 1 margin. The bill now sits on Governor Rick Scott’s desk awaiting his signature or his veto. It is urgent that proponents of shared parenting and alimony reform let Governor Scott know how important this legislation is for the well-being of children and the fairness of spousal support. If you haven’t already sent Governor Scott your endorsement of the enacted legislation, please do so immediately. If you’ve sent him one email, send him another. Read more...

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Florida Advocates for Shared Parenting and Alimony Reform Speak Out
By Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
If you need help in making your points to Governor Scott, here’s Terrence Power of Clearwater to summarize SB 668 (Tampa Bay Times, 3/9/16). Power, an ongoing victim of the existing system offers examples of its injustice and wrongheaded policy:
The bill eliminates the punitive "permanent alimony laws" for newly divorcing couples while providing safeguards for existing alimony recipients. It will provide a formula as to duration and amount of alimony for newly divorcing couples while also allowing judicial discretion to address "out of the norm" cases…

[T]he income and assets of a new spouse will no longer be fair game for divorce attorneys to go after. This is the reason why I, a permanent alimony payer, can never marry my fiancee of seven years. It would cost me $3,000 a month of her income.
But Power has nothing to gain by the bill’s enactment into law. SB 668 isn’t retroactive, a feature that led Scott to veto a similar bill two years ago. Read more...

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Great News Out of Iowa!
By Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
The shared parenting snowball continues to gather momentum. The Iowa House of Representatives passed House File 2372 that now goes to the state Senate for consideration. HF 2372 mandates shared physical custody of children where it’s in their best interests. It amends existing law that only permits shared parenting time. Here’s one report (North Iowa Today, 3/6/16).
The Iowa House of Representatives approved a crucial family law reform bill this week. Parental equality leaders across Iowa are calling on lawmakers to pass the legislation quickly to help curb the adversarial nature of the current family law system.

“Iowa has an opportunity this year to be a national leader on children’s and family health. House File 2372 helps us begin to address the problem by maximizing children’s time with both parents after a divorce. This legislation puts children’s emotional health front and center,” Families United Action Network Chief Executive Director Nicholas Dreeszen said.

If the bill is passed, if joint legal custody is awarded in a custody dispute, the court shall award joint physical care to both joint custodial parents, unless the court determines joint physical care is not in the best interest of the child. Under current law this is not required.
If you’re in Iowa, contact your senator today and tell him/her to support HF 2372. The movement for shared parenting is growing nationwide. Be part of it!

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Anne-Marie Slaughter: ‘Society not Willing to Address Roles of Men’

 

 
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“Children deserve both parents. National Parents Organization is committed to making this common-sense concept the norm in the United States. When we succeed, children will no longer be victims of a system that fosters conflict between parents and traumatizes children in the process. No one should have to endure the experiences that I had as a child, or what my daughter has been experiencing for most of her life.”

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The opinions expressed herein are those of our guest authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Parents Organization or its Board of Directors.
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"As an involved grandparent, nothing gives me more satisfaction than working for the next generation of children in Connecticut. National Parents Organization brings like-minded people together to improve outcomes for the children of divorce, and unites Connecticut groups with those working on this cause in other states. Now we are proposing changes to Connecticut’s Child Support Guidelines. The proposed Guidelines empower both parents to maintain households and pay for expenses associated with child rearing. The term “empowered” is important, since they benefit from seeing parents who have responsibility and the means to exercise this responsibility."

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