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NPO publishes blog articles to inform and to stimulate conversation about issues of importance to NPO's mission.  All blog articles express the opinions of the authors as individuals and do not necessarily reflect the views of National Parents Organization, its Board of Directors, or its executives.  

Boston, MA and Los Angeles CA--Glenn Sacks and Fathers & Families today launched a nationwide protest. The issue is similar to the Elian Gonzalez case of about five years ago. In the present case, a Cuban mother brought her young daughter to the US, but underwent psychological deterioration, eventually attempting suicide. The Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) found that the mother had abused and neglected the five-year-old girl, and properly placed her in temporary foster care. But although the DCF had the name and phone number of the father in Cuba, it made no attempt to contact him. Moreover, once Rafael Izquierdo learned of the situation and came to the US to take over the care of his five year old girl, the DCF ginned up a series of unsupported accusations against him and hired 21 lawyers to oppose his bid to resume custody of his own daughter. On September 27, 2007, after a full two week hearing, the Florida court found that the DCF"s accusations against Izquierdo were unfounded and that he is a committed father. Yet the DCF"s lawyers continue to oppose his reunification with his daughter, and apparently intend to appeal, thus delaying normalcy for this girl for another year or two. Our demand is for the DCF to drop its case against the father, to get out of this girl"s life, to let her grow up in the loving care of her father, and to respect the right of fit parents to raise their own children free of government interference. There are numerous cases all around the country in which state agencies ignore, obstruct or oppose non-custodial fathers when they attempt to take over the care of their children after the mother has abused or neglected them. So I am asking you to take two actions to address this dismal pattern: 1) Please forward this post to three people you know. Tell them you care about what happens to kids in foster care, and ask them to take action by following the links below. 2) Send a protest email to Governor Crist of Florida and several Florida state officials. There are two ways to do this, and each requires only one more click.      A) If you want to read the details of this case, including the court"s September 27 decision, previous newspaper reports of the case, and more, CLICK HERE.   This will take you to a page containing all you might wish to know about the case, plus a link to a pre-fab email to the governor and others. One more click will send the email and fax out to all.       B) If you trust Glenn and me that this campaign is meritorious, and don"t want to take the time to read all the back-up materials, CLICK HERE.  This will take you straight to the protest letter. Glenn and I are counting on you to make the voices of parents heard. Our goal is to generate 2,000 protests, which will enable our point of view to be heard when we send out follow-up press releases.

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