July 18, 2010 at Peoples Park at Independence Hall in Philadelphia 10:00 am. Promoting Equal Rights for Fathers in Family Court
May 30, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE :
Several Riders with courage and commitment to the cause of equality in the family court system of Pennsylvania will be riding their bicycles from Philadelphia, PA to Washington, D.C. in protest to the numerous injustices perpetrated against Fathers and their children in the Family Court System.
Along their route they will be stopping in Harrisburg, PA on July 21st to Lobby the support of several pieces of introduced Legislation to correct these inequalities and to protect a Fathers relationship with his children after separation or divorce.
Upon their arrival in Washington, they will make an address to the thousands of attendees from states across the nation at the
4th Annual Family Preservation Festival in Washington, D.C.
The proposed pieces of Legislation are:
PA House Bill 463
Which provides for Presumptive Equal Custody of children provided that in those cases children would not be put at risk.
Please see hb463.com for more details about the bill, hearings, and movement to bring fathers back to their kids in the Commonwealth of PA.
PA House Bill 1639
Provides for contempt for Custodial Parents denying court ordered visitation and or custody and provides for Grandparents rights.
PA House Bill 418
Provides for disciplinary actions against Judges, Masters, and court officers for misconduct.
PA House Bill 90
Provides for prevention of child abduction in cases involving custody disputes.
State Rep. Robert E. Belfanti, Jr.
"The state's current 'best interest of the child' standard is too often based on outdated, inaccurate or stereotypical views of parenting in our society and the relationship that each parent has with a child," Belfanti said. "Under my legislation, the goal in every child custody case would still be finding an arrangement that represents the best interest of the child, but we would start from a presumption that joint custody represents that best interest and work from there, not the other way around."
Belfanti stressed that the legislation does not mandate joint custody or any other type of custody arrangement, nor any specific division of physical custody. Courts would still have wide discretion in deciding final custody arrangements.
"This joint custody presumption is a guide, a starting point, but not a straitjacket," he said. "It does not require shared parenting, nor does it reduce or eliminate protections against unfit or violent parents. It simply instructs the courts, when possible and appropriate, to maximize exposure of the child to each parent and to recognize that fit parents who have a desire and ability to share responsibility for custody and care of their child after a separation or divorce have the right to do so." More than 30 other states already have some form of a joint custody rebuttal provision in place, he said.
"The impact that a single-parent household has on a child can be startling," he said. "For instance, about 63 percent of teen suicides, 90 percent of homeless or runaway children, 71 percent of high school dropouts and 85 percent of youth in prison come from fatherless homes," Belfanti said. "Both mothers and fathers are an important part of a child's life. In cases where both are willing – and able – to provide custody and care for a child after a separation or divorce, that is the position from which the courts should start, as well."
Bill would introduce joint custody presumption in Pa. child custody law
For More Information Contact Event Coordinators:
Families' & Childrens' Equality (FACE)
PA FACE - Every Child Deserves Two Parents
Families' & Childrens' Equality (FACE)
P O Box 1062
Newtown, PA 18940
Fathers 4 Justice
American Coalition for
The Fathers Rights Network