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Political Issues This forum is for discussing the political aspects of divorce: reform to divorce laws, men's rights, women's rights, injustices in the divorce system, etc.

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  #1  
Old 07-25-2006, 10:04 AM
Decent Dad Decent Dad is offline
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Default North Dakota Shared Parenting

ND is looking at shared parenting, and changing support laws, etc. very interesting.

http://www.grandforks.com/mld/grandforks/15107855.htm

FAMILY INITIATIVE: North Dakota is not alone
By Kyle Johnson
Herald Staff Writer
North Dakota is not alone in the fight for shared parenting, the executive director of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children said.

Michael McCormick said 17 other states are in some form of considering the move to shared parenting, although in most cases, this involves lobbying the state legislature.

Two ballot initiatives are being circulated for signatures now in North Dakota, and both could be up for a vote on the November ballot this year.

"We see the country moving in this direction," McCormick said. "But the movement in North Dakota is leading-edge, and I think passing it will enhance the efforts elsewhere."

Any person eligible to vote in North Dakota can lead a ballot measure drive. To place a referendum or initiative on the ballot, 12,844 signatures are required, and 25,688 signatures are needed to place a constitutional amendment on the ballot.

This process was created to allow more openness in government, and is considered "very easy" to get things on the ballot, said Mitchell Sanderson, North Dakota representative for McCormick's coalition.

The coalition supports Sanderson's Shared Parenting Initiative, which is likely to gather enough signatures for ballot placement this year. The Family Law Reform Initiative, which addresses shared parenting in addition to domestic violence, divorce, child support and prenuptial agreements, is more likely to be on the 2008 ballot.

"This is going to be a huge pressure on the Legislature to get something done here," Sanderson said. "This is an issue in all 50 states, and if North Dakota gets this thing through, other states are going to be up in arms."

McCormick said the initiative is garnering national attention, something he has noticed from his native Washington, D.C.

And that attention is spreading here. National news networks have been calling Sanderson, he said, and people from all over the country are watching what happens very closely.

"I've heard from a number of people that would love to flood their legislature with letters of support if it passes in North Dakota," McCormick said.
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Old 07-25-2006, 10:05 AM
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More here:

http://www.grandforks.com/mld/grandforks/15107925.htm?
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Old 07-25-2006, 06:06 PM
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interesting,

more and more states are reforming their laws to accommodate a shared parenting regime. Perhaps one day Canada will see the light and reform our laws.

lv
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Old 07-25-2006, 08:27 PM
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It would be truly amazing to see this bill pass......but there is tremndous, huge opposition to the bill by a group called North Dakota concerned citizens for choldrens rights comittee. From what I understand not just your usuall feminist group rather a group consisting of federal & state officials, and divirce lawyers.

It is an uphill battle, if this bill passes many other states will be looking at the option as well, bad news for womens right advocates which we know are funded and backed by government. Sooooo.....we'll see what happens soon enough.
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Old 07-25-2006, 08:49 PM
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Need to learn how to use spellcheck.
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Old 07-26-2006, 10:15 AM
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There are several battles with getting reform to the divorce acts.

1) The general public does not care since they do not care about divorce until it happens to them... and then it is too late. So general pubic apathy.

2) A complete misunderstanding of the divorce act and family law act by the general public. Which again leads to apathy. For example, many people I have talked to have stated:
- 50-50 access is default
- joint custody is default
- spousal supports automatically stops when the recipient remarries
- no child support when 50-50
- child support stops at 18
- child support automatically stops when you are laid off
- child support is automatically reduced when pay or income is reduced
- children are the number one concern
- child support is for children (i.e. paid to them, or is accountable, etc., etc)
- tax laws are equal to both parents
- and on and on...

3) Strong lobbying by anti-reform groups.

4) No political will based on 1, 2 and 3.

5) Any mention of reform is met with "How can you destroy, harm, endanger, abuse, impoverish, (insert favourite hysterical adjective here) these children!!!" or various other versions. This is based partially on 1 and 2 (i.e. the current laws are fine). And of course, no one wants to destroy, harm, endanger, abuse, impoverish, (insert favourite hysterical adjective here) any child, therefore reform means evil.

6) Any reform is always viewed as a way for the paying parents (i.e. Dads) to reduce their obligations. Again, how can ANYONE destroy, harm, endanger, abuse, impoverish, (insert favourite hysterical adjective here) these children... you deadbeat!!

The way for political change in Canada is to educate so that 1 and 2 are gone. With 1 and 2 gone, 3 is easier to fight and 4 can happen. The rest is just noise.
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Old 07-26-2006, 10:17 AM
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hey... thats funny "pubic apathy"... should be "public apathy".

arg... spellcheck loser.
  #8  
Old 07-26-2006, 11:25 AM
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That was well said, just about covers all opposition to any form of shared parenting as well as the general publics misunderstanding of our wonderful family law system. My own personal favorite is # 5.
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Old 07-26-2006, 03:55 PM
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Until I was divorced I was completely in the #1 and #2 camp. I was quite shocked when I figured out I had to spend the GDP of a small country to have joint custody and 50-50... let alone all the support issues.
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Old 07-26-2006, 04:05 PM
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At first reform looks to be a daunting task. But when you break it down, the number of people in opposed would be rather small. People I am sure would wanty reform after education, or after being "in the system"

- dads
- mom who lost custody
- mom who is paying
- subsequent wives
- subsequent husbands
- step-parents
- children
- grandparents

Now, if you want, I can give you reasons why ALL of the above want changes to the divorce act... and all in the same direction. This leaves only a small percentage (with a current huge voice) on the opposition side of things. You could take all the piouints in #2 above, the perceived reality, and see why all would want that the default. One thing you must rememebr, the reason is that #2 is preceived to be, is that IT MAKES SENSE! And most people actually have good common sense. Only after you tell people the "law" do jaws drop, *gasps* are heard and *What!"" are excalimed. It is quite fun sometimes.
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