Wednesday

I Would Like to Extend a Personal Thanks to the Department of Health and Human Services!

I'm a noncustodial parent and I can't visit or talk with my child even though I have a visitation order. What can I do?

You can see what groups in your state have access to these grants that are being used for fraudulent purposes such as custody switching. Well, actually, it can't be fraudulent if DHHS is allowing it (emphasis mine):
A parent's visitation rights should be protected and children should have access to both their parents. In nearly all cases, children who have the love and support of both their parents have better lives. The Federal government provides grants to each state for programs to improve children's access to their noncustodial parent. These programs include mediation, education, visitation enforcement, development of guidelines for visitation, and alternative custody arrangements. It is up to the state to decide which services are provided and in which parts of the state.
And just in case you thought the Department of Child Support Enforcement (CSE) wasn't involved in this scandal:
Your state child support enforcement agency should be able to tell you about the projects in your state...If your child's whereabouts have been hidden from you in violation of a custody or visitation order or you have other problems, the CSE agency can help you.
Many mothers are coming forward reporting that it wasn't until the moment that the Department of Child Support Enforcement began handling their case, that the "absent-father" sought custody of their child...children that they had seen once, or never...relationships that never existed, one night stands...even rapes.

Things weren't like this a long time ago. Men didn't want custody (they still don't, really), in fact, they would go through great lengths to disappear in order to avoid paying child support. Perhaps the child support collections got too good at hunting fathers, so the best thing they could come up with was helping the fathers escape paying child support by seeking joint and sole custody. This is what "Responsible Fatherhood" is all about and you can thank former President Clinton.


Myth -- Child support enforcement programs were enacted to benefit women and children.

Fact: Child support enforcement programs were enacted to benefit state welfare coffers and recoup the burden of public welfare payments.

See, e.g. discussion at CLASP -- What If All the Money Came Home http://www.clasp.org/pubs/childenforce/pilr2300.htm

Myth -- "Child support belongs to the child."

Fact: This is what is known as a "legal fiction." It was created as an artificial premise in the law for the purpose of enabling the state to obtain subrogation rights to keep the child support money it collects from some men as restitution for welfare dollars spent on women and children. The legal fiction disables mothers and fathers from contracting privately, either to pay private child support or to waive it altogether.

See, e.g. discussion at CLASP -- What If All the Money Came Home http://www.clasp.org/pubs/childenforce/pilr2300.htm For definition of "legal fiction" see http://www.thelawyerpages.com/legalterms/L.

Comment: The legal fiction (aided and abetted by widespread public misconceptions about what constitutes a "parent" under the law) also is responsible for the avalanching trend -- contrary to historical jurisprudence and contrary to the relationship-based notion of "family" that underlies the "liberty interest" respected by the U.S. Constitution -- to consider unwed nonresident biological sires to be "legal fathers." It is considered to be in the public interest to establish someone as a second parent (like an insurance policy) to hold responsible for supporting a household with children in case one parent cannot do it alone -- even if if that someone is a man who was never married to the mother, even if continuing with the pregnancy was the unilateral decision of the woman, and even if such contributions are neither needed nor wanted by the mother. This idea as a premise of the law frequently benefits neither men nor women in its immediate application. In its long-term jurisprudential effects, it is particularly noxious with regard to notions of women's equal abilities, responsibilities and rights, freedom of contract, and partnership theories of marriage, family, alimony and childbearing. The application of this fiction underlies father's rights claims for joint custody in the hopes of eliminating the financial imposition by becoming an equivalent half-time single parent household providing child support "in kind," and in a number of other ways it also bolsters the strategy of rather vicious agenda -- elevating patriarchal notions of fatherhood while turning the clock back on women's independence and rights.

See generally, liznotes, and articles Male Bashing? and on the National Fatherhood Initiative. Contact liz if you have a need for further information and resources.


You can read more myths and facts on the Liz Library.