Only 2.3% of Israeli Divorced Dads Have Custody?!
"Attorney Chagit Lev...said that there is a 'critical need for a study carried out by objective groups'...She dismissed claims by the Ministry representatives that many of the fathers cut off from their children had no desire to pursue the relationships. 'I have grown men in my office on a regular basis, crying like babies for me to help them be able to see their children.'" A new Israeli parliamentary subcommittee is holding hearings on fathers' rights and child custody. It is claimed in the hearing that only 2.3 percent of divorced men in Israel have custody of their children--amazing. Some other highlights: 1) "Dr. Orli Iness of the University of Haifa told the committee that 'when the Knesset adopted legislation on the matter of protecting women from violence, it was reported that about 20 percent of complaints filed were false, but it adopted the legislation as the price to pay in order to protect the weak… Presently, there have been reports that in some precincts the figure [for false complaints] is as high as 50%. If that had been the case at the time, the Knesset would have thought differently about the matter.' "Iness said that one of the main problems surrounding the issue is the lack of organized impartial studies on the phenomenon. "They should be carried out. It is not such a difficult task." 2) "Moshe Aberjil, who heads one of the fathers" rights groups present at the meeting, complained that the Welfare Ministry"s forms are all worded with gender inflections that are only suitable for complaints of violence carried out by men, when it has been clearly shown that female domestic violence is a reality. Other representatives alleged that police do not follow up on complaints filed by men, indicating an order from above not to pursue such investigations." 3) "Dr. Michael Kronghaus of the Israeli Center for the Defense of the Child said...that only 2.3 percent of divorced men in Israel have custody of their children, whereas in France and Germany the figure is around 20 percent and in the US 35 percent. 'Are Jewish fathers so much worse?' he asked. 4) "Attorney Chagit Lev...said that there is a 'critical need for a study carried out by objective groups'...She dismissed claims by the Ministry representatives that many of the fathers cut off from their children had no desire to pursue the relationships. 'I have grown men in my office on a regular basis, crying like babies for me to help them be able to see their children. I am not sitting here today for the sake of the men or the women, though, but for the children themselves… Pretending that domestic violence is only a male issue leaves thousands of children in the care of violent women – and 80 percent of kids raised with parental violence go on to use violence against their own kids.'" 5) "[Attorney] Ariel Levine, said the heart of the legislative defect enabling the crisis is the ease with which a woman, on her own or counseled by a lawyer to do so to help her case, can walk into a police station and receive a 10-day restraining order against a father without any surcharge or bond posted. 'Then, the judges will often leave it in place without any proof because nobody wants to later be known as the judge who let the potential murderer go. The result is a huge number of men, good fathers, upstanding citizens that fall victim to this system.'" To learn more, see New Knesset Sub-C'tee Examines Discrimination Against Fathers. Thanks to Gil Ronen of www.familism.org.