Let's Get Honest! Blog: Absolutely Uncommon Analysis of Family & Conciliation Courts' Operations, Practices, & History

'A Different Kind of Attention Develops Sound Judgment' | 'Suppose I'm Right Here?…' (posted 3/23 & 3/5/2014). Over 680 posts, Public-Interest Investigative Blogging On These Matters Since 2009.

(“Say No! to SB 557,” cont’d.) Centralizing the Dispensation of Justice, Resource Centers to Train the Dispensaries…

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I could easily talk about the upcoming “Fathers’ Day” weekend, either in terms of worshipping it, or discouraging the worship of this ideology (or any other).  Or I could talk, I suppose, about the imminent “schools’ out” — as are thousands of California prisoners.  After all, overcrowding and boxing & controlling often segregated by race & wealth populations is a definitely a common factor.

[Photo of inmates crowded into a gym at a prison in Chino in 2007 via AP]

CRIMINALS

California Releasing Mentally Disturbed Prisoners in Time for Tourists

By Ryan Tate, May 23, 2011 2:53 PM

Here’s an advisory for prospective summer visitors to California: The state must release around 32,000 prisoners under a new Supreme Court decision to help mentally ill inmates. It is one of the largest prisoner releases in U.S. history. Exciting.

Citing the state penitentiaries’ horrific overcrowding and high suicide rate, the high court upheld an order to reduce the prison population to 137.5 percent of capacity from 200 percent in recent years, translating into a release of around 32,000 people. It’s not clear how many of those people will come straight from mental treatment, but it’s plain that the overcrowding is corroding the minds even among the regular population.California prisoners have been living in gyms up to 200 at a time, and as many as 54 prisoners have been known to share a single toilet. There is, on average, about one suicide per week, according to a report by the governor’s office.

…Or, a nice photo from 2010, featured in the NYT:

CALIFORNIA REELING

California, in Financial Crisis, Opens Prison Doors

The prison in Lancaster, Calif., has 4,600 inmates, twice the intended number. Some 150 prisoners are held in the gymnasium.
by Randall C. Archibold in NYTimes, published March 23, 2010:

LANCASTER, Calif. — The California budget crisis has forced the state to address a problem that expert panels and judges have wrangled over for decades: how to reduce prison overcrowding.

The state has begun in recent weeks the most significant changes since the 1970s to reduce overcrowding — and chip away at an astonishing 70 percent recidivism rate, the highest in the country — as the prison population becomes a major drag on the state’s crippled finances.

Many in the state still advocate a tough approach, with long sentences served in full, and some early problems with released inmates have given critics reason to complain. But fiscal reality, coupled with a court-ordered reduction in the prison population, is pouring cold water on old solutions like building more prisons.

About 11 percent of the state budget, or roughly $8 billion, goes to the penal system, putting it ahead of expenditures like higher education…
….

To slow the return of former inmates to prison for technical violations of their parole, hundreds of low-level offenders will be released without close supervision from parole officers. Those officers will focus instead on tracking serious, violent offenders.

Some prisoners may also be released early for completing drug and education programs or have their sentences reduced under new formulas for calculating time served in county jails before and after sentencing.

The effort represents a “seismic shift,” said Joan Petersilia, a criminologist at Stanford Law School and a longtime scholar of the state’s prisons.

Public safety concerns have other states rethinking their decisions to save prisons costs by releasing inmates early and expanding parole.

The same red flags are being raised here, but the overcrowding problem dwarfs that of any other state and the budget deficit — $20 billion and climbing — has left lawmakers with virtually no choice but to move ahead. …

Proponents, including Mr. Schwarzenegger’s corrections secretary, Matthew Cate, have stood by the law, calling it overdue and necessary. The state spends, on average, $47,000 per year to house a prisoner. Early estimates suggest the new changes could save $100 million this year.

Gee, $47,000 per year reminds me of  a similar $$$ figure of double-dipping by L.A. County Judges, featured in a “FullDisclosure.net” series of articles on Richard Fine, and retroactively “legalized” in California’s “SBX 211,” which I blogged recently in “What’s Money Got to Do With It?….” post.

This double-dipping has been known about for at least ten years — here’s an article from 2000, LA times, talking about this (although the figure was lower then):

L.A. County Lets Judges Draw Duplicate Benefits and Perks
Courts: Jurists, who get similar compensation from the state, say it’s well-deserved.
Others see double-dipping.

August 20, 2000|STEVE BERRY and TRACY WEBER | TIMES STAFF WRITERS

Judges across California can only look in wonderment and envy at their brethren on the Los Angeles Superior Court. In this town, judges make so much that a promotion to a higher level would mean a pay cut.

The reason: Los Angeles County officials allow the judges to draw duplicate benefits and perks from state and local taxes. As a result, the judges receive nearly $30,000 a year above their base salary of $118,000.**

{{**I wasn’t tracking judicial salaries 10 years ago, but recently I’ve been reading $178,000/ year, plus benefits.  You can find out locally, I’m sure..}}

Although this compensation arrangement is largely unknown to the public, it is no secret to judicial insiders and county officials throughout the state. Some criticize it as “double-dipping.”

Here’s why:

* Los Angeles County judges now {{year 2000}}receive $22,400 in cash from the county for health and insurance benefits, even though they are fully covered by the state. There are no strings attached to how judges spend that money. “If they wanted to go to Vegas on it they could,” says Los Angeles County spokeswoman Judy Hammond.

* The judges are given $5,520 each year in “professional development” money for legal journals, educational books and conferences. They are not, however, required to submit receipts showing where it goes. In fact, records show that judges have charged the state for educational expenses instead of using the money the county gave them for just that purpose.

{{A “Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court” addresses this, as I noted earlier, in flying judges out to attend a SF- based conferrence on Domestic Violence (see title of post, today).  So does this Opinion No. 98-16.

(Quote within a quote, here, is in red…)”

CJE Opinion No. 98-16


Attending Meetings of Domestic Violence Roundtables

 ~ > ~ > ~ > ~ > ~ > NOTE DATE:   ~ > ~ > ~ > ~ > September 15, 1998

CJE Opinion No. 98-16

          You ask whether you may attend meetings of a domestic violence “roundtable.” In your court these roundtables are called monthly by a victim/witness advocate from the District Attorney’s Office. While all court personnel and the public are invited, the meetings are attended mostly by victim/witness advocates, assistant district attorneys, and probation officers, although police officers, court clinic personnel and clerks will also attend. While defense counsel are notified, they rarely attend. The roundtables typically involve a presentation by a guest who is often a professional involved with the provision of treatment or services to batterers and batterees. Generally, the discussions concern issues regarding the detection of and response to domestic violence, usually, but not always, from a law enforcement, prosecutorial, and probationary standpoint.

{{And the opinion goes on to say, it may compromise appearance of impartiality…..}}  My quote, in red here, is to relate this practice (obviously now an established, and federally-supported (through HHS) practice to promote — to this article about double-dipping as to perks, which ALSO refers to the professional development moneys.  And I did n’t even refer (here) to how this plays out when, in the family law side, the professional development absolutely does espouse a single point of view, and the organization’s name is AFCC (Association of Family & Conciliation Courts — although it’s a private, nonprofit corporation whose memberships primarily make their livings from the courts…).  I recently found information in the state of Indiana where a steering committee simply decided that, rather than fly its judges out to attend a conference out of state, they’d request the organization to host its conference in THEIR state — Indiana.  Want references?  Comment-me; I’m busy, but will provide if you ask.}}

This Committee has been called upon several times to address participation by judges in activities that involve interaction with individuals identified with or otherwise supportive of a particular class of litigants. These requests have implicated Canon 2 of the Code of Judicial Conduct which provides, in part:

“(A) A judge should . . . conduct himself at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary. 

“(B) [A judge] should not . . . convey or permit others to convey the impression that they are in a special position to influence him.”

          Based upon these provisions, we concluded in CJE Opinion No. 97-8 and CJE Opinion 98-9 that a judge’s participation in the activities of a community policing organization impermissibly conveyed the impression that the police and other members of the group were in a special position to influence him. Similarly, in CJE Opinion No. 91-2 we advised a probate judge that she could not serve on an advisory committee established by the Coalition for Battered Women Service Groups. There we concluded that her “membership in an organization dedicated to the needs of women who are battered would call into question [her] impartiality in deciding” abuse prevention petitions.

           A judge’s participation in domestic violence roundtables is fraught with the same dangers, i.e., that the judge may be perceived as being on the victim’s “team” in G. L. c. 209A proceedings or in the prosecutions of c. 209A violations or domestic assaults, or that the other attendees may be viewed as having the opportunity, in essentially a one-sided format, to suggest the validity of certain legal positions that will inevitably come up in such proceedings.

SIMILARLY, in the family law venue, often, victims of domestic violence are not informed of the existence of a compromising set of grants (compromising IMPARTIALITY) that is very likely to being their case, given the $10 million/year funding (nationwide) for it, and the variety of groups that stand to profit by marketing products geared primarily to these grants.   When these products tie back to nonprofits with judges & attorneys and family law therapists / marital therapist & social workers on them — then, we have an impartiality problem.  Not that the judges seem to think so — after all, it’s just to “help” the clients  — excuse me, “litigants,” excuse me — parents.  Or grandparents.  Or (best buzz word to use) “kids.”

Back to the 2000 article:

* On top of the money judges receive in their paychecks, they also are well positioned for their later years. They receive two retirements programs at taxpayers expense–one from the county, one from the state.

Chief Justice of California Ronald George said the great disparity between the pay of Los Angeles County’s 400-plus judges and those laboring elsewhere in the state “doesn’t make sense.” Judges in L.A., he said, are “in effect, double-dipping for benefits.”

“The Legislature has the authority to say judges can’t have both,” George said, but he stopped short of urging specific action.”

A simple solution :  Take the double-dipped benefits and apply them to housing prisoners, for now.   After also, Los Angeles already knows how to do such things, and so does San Diego, it seems (see recent posts). Surely something would be more sensible than to continue the double-dipping  However, extra scoops can become addictive, and politicians and other leaders most definitely can get addicted to various perks of office, and excommunicate ethical protesters in egregious manners.  But here’s the humorous rendition (May, 2010) of the issue:

In the early 1990s, California unified its court system and assumed the financial responsibility of paying the wages and benefits for all of California’s nearly 2,000 judges. A California Court of Appeals recently ruled it was unconstitutional (illegal) for Judge Yaffe and his cohorts (at least 500 of them) to accept dual benefits (aka, double-dipping).

It would be absurd for Judge Yaffe to assert that he was ignorant of the fact it was illegal to collect nearly $50,000 a year from LA County for the same benefits he received from the State. I suppose Yaffe will argue that he was ignorant of the law. As we all know, ignorance of the law is not a valid defense; however, in many instances it is a stepping stone to higher office.

Unfortunately for Mr. Fine his sole remedy is to seek redress from another judge, a proposition that in and of itself doesn’t pass the involuntary laugh test. {We now know he was released, the judge who did this has retired, and retroactive immunity for violating the California Constitution was later legalized, in this matter (I think), in SB 
As we speak (ca. May 2010) Judge Yaffe and those of his ilk (FYI: Judge Yaffe, ILK is not defined as a male ELK!), are receiving around $57,000 annually in duplicate benefits from LA County that are also being paid by the overburdened taxpayers of California. And Judge Yaffe has the chutzpah to accept this unconstitutional gratuity with a smile on his face. Is Los Angeles County a great country or what?
Finally, when a defendant who wrongfully collected worker’s compensation while actually working appeared before Judge Yaffe, do ya think he gave him/her a pass for illegally double-dipping like he has for years?
You have to admire the graphics, on the post, though:  It is no laughing matter, but perhaps if we expose how “laughable” these problem-solving courts are, when in the hands of double-dipping, ethical-attorney-tossing  judges and panels of experts. . . . .
 
I

If you’re lost, here’s an orderly statement of events on SBX 211 at “tulanelink.com”

RETROACTIVE IMMUNITY FROM PROSECUTION

Judges were apparently worried about being prosecuted for criminal acts and liability for taking the unearned payments. At the urging of the Los Angeles Superior Court, the California Judicial Council quietly authored a provision that was slipped into State Budget legislation SBX2 11 without public debate or awareness.  …

{{Well, SB 557 is another one…. time to pay closer attention to our legislators, as best we can.  I know it ain’t easy to keep up with them…..}}

NON-DISCLOSURE & PROSECUTION

Sterling Norris of Judicial Watch had these comments regarding unearned payments to judges and their failure to disclose:

The purpose of DISCLOSURE is so that anyone coming before a judge with a cause knows whether the judge as a financial vested interest in a certain outcome.  It is to make sure the judges are not being bribed or influenced.  If they do not disclose, the public doesn’t know if its judge is honest or dishonest.  HONEST judges will disclose, and are responsible to know what they must disclose.  Period.  Honest judges making honest mistakes don’t retroactively vote to immunize themselves against systemic corruption because it’s somehow “for our common good.”   Honestly, we need to stop being “morons united” and figure out what we do — and do not — have in common with our elected and appointed governmental figures.

• “There is no question that the judges should have disclosed they were receiving $46,000 from the County of L.A.; there is no way the judiciary, ethically, could get around it…”

• “$46,000 each year is not a small amount; many people don’t make that much all year, and this, from the County, is on top their $200,000 State salary. In California they are the highest paid court judges in the nation.

• “We have never seen people excused from liability retroactively.”

• “There is a criminal doctrine of law that, if you received money you are not entitled to and you keep it, that is considered theft.”

If you’ve heard of “Sterling Norris” (Plaintiff attorney on ‘Sturgeon v. Los Angeles,” which dealt with this issue), did you know he was a former L.A. County District Attorney?   If find this interesting, because a parallel case (between the two of them, Richard Fine ends up jailed 18 months, age 69 — solitary coercive confinement, not the gymnasium variety, above….) was “Silva v. Garcetti, which dealt with another L.A. District Attorney (and his office) illegally withholding millions of collected child support — due the children — in order to retain the interest, and might still be doing this — had they not been caught.  I still don’t know what became of “SIlva v. Garcetti,” but Californians know that around 2000, Child Support Collection (another thing that can land a man – or a woman – in jail, if they are in contempt) was removed from the District Attorney’s office to a Child Support Agency which (from what I can tell) is just as burdensome and not much more ethical — and THEIR “on the take” is from the federal government’s series of grants to increase noncustodial parenting time in the theory (and it IS “theory”) that this will improve collections and make better Dads out of the men.

Sterling Norris

Sterling “Ernie” Norris is an attorney for Judicial Watch, a conservative, Washington, D.C.-based watchdog organization whose stated mission is to promote transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law.  Norris is a former L.A. Deputy District Attorney and is the attorney who represented the plaintiff in Sturgeon vs. County of Los Angeles.

My ongoing theme, these days, is “Say No to SB 557” which is the California version of further legitimizing the Family Justice Center philosophy which, as I wrote, got its start with a Faith-Based President’s $20 million oomph and some sort of Republican empathy with a San Diego City Attorney (?) who was in hot water over financial matters in his hometown.   I’m not in favor of the family justice center alliance — for one, where’s the justice, apart from the center’s own claims to be providing it?  Show me the money, etc.  When I learned who was behind it in Washington, I was even less impressed.

Then I learned at Ellen & Casey were conferencing and schmoozing (I call it that) — EDUCATING AND TRAINING — and so forth — I believe the whole damn thing is most likely a racket. (I plead the “First” — that’s my opinion.  For what I based it on, read — or do your own research….).

DULUTH- SAN DIEGO – SAN FRANCISCO CONNECTIONS TO WASHINGTON, D.C. (HHS):

Washington DC is the “initiative” and a financer.  Think “House Ways and Means, Appropriations.”    Any federal initiative is a great chance for the resident White House CEO to give his favorites some Czar position, whether it reads on Fatherhood (there is none on mother hood), DOmestic VIolence, “Women and Girls” and I hear now they are pushing for a “Boyz 2 Men” initiative as well, per Washington Post, including among its Board of Directors, Warren Farrell, a powerful spokesperson for the “Powerlessness of Men” as he expressed in 1993 interview to his book about “The Myth of Male Power.”  (I didn’t finish reading the interview and just found the website by search, don’t associate me with whatever else is on that domain):

FARRELL: By getting men to understand what their feelings are, and to express those feeling, and as a result, getting the society to understand what we are doing that is leading men to commit 80% of the suicides, be victims of 3/4 of the homicides, become 85% of the street homeless, most of the alcoholics and gamblers, and over 90% of the prisoners.

We have no problems understanding that blacks are more likely to be the victims of these problems because of the powerlessness of blacks, but when men as a group are victims of each of these problems we cannot conceive that it might be a result of the powerlessness of men.

{{And women start the wars and run Congress, I know  . . . . as can be seen from our major institutions which, though funded through a Congress primarily white males, and many of them run also by males, somehow all these males are mistakenly ruling all the time in favor of females.  SOmething oughter be done about that!}}

With men being so powerless, what better to do than have “a White House Council on Boys to Men”  “A multi-partisan*” committee of nationally known scholars and practitioners [FATHERHOOD practitioners, for the uninformed, but across a variety of fields][what’s a “practitioner, anyhow?  Someone with an advanced degree of some sort?] request that President Obama create a White House Council on Boys to Men….Short term investment, one million.  Long-term savings:  Billions of dollar…” (of course).  For further info, contact Chairman, Warren Farrell, Ph.D.

For who is this mysterious “Commission” self-described as a “Bipartisan Commission of Leading American Authors, Academics and Practitioners” see the roster — it’s basically fatherhood advocates, including many that signed the last “fatherhood manifesto.”

The 2nd listed member of this “Commission” is Sanford M. Braver, Ph.D. (in psychology, what else?) described as:

Dr. Sanford L. Braver has been a Professor of Psychology at Arizona State University since 1970.
For his research on fatherhood, he has receivedFederal grants in excess of $20M, and published over 100 articles and chapters, as well as the landmark book  Divorced Dads: Shattering the Myths .His numerous awards include Vice-president Gore’s ReinventingGovernment Award, and both the President’s Award and the Research Award from the Association of Family and Conciliation Court

(Hmm.  See my comments on the CJE Opinion 98-16 from September 1998, here, on AFCC — it’s another private organization, and obviously, has a position on custody given that Dr. Braver got its research award.  Fact is, he can draw grants….)

Described at “The Boys Initiative” (a nonprofit I traced to a Family Foundation in Vienna, VA & New York (i think), but will spare you this time), Warren Farrell organized this commission to start with.  So we ought to read some of his earlier work, found in the infamous (and well known among certain mothers fighting to retain or regain custody of their children) December, 1977 PENTHOUSE article, “Incest, the Last Taboo.”   The blog this is from is called “Kinda Sort Like Almost Similar to Pro-Pedophilia.” but I’m sure the Penthouse article can be found on-line in its entirety.

WARREN FARRELL, interviewed in Penthouse, December 1977, “Incest: The Last Taboo” by Philip Nobile:

“When I get my most glowing positive cases, 6 out of 200,” says Farrell, “the incest is part of the family’s open, sensual style of life, wherein sex is an outgrowth of warmth and affection. It is more likely that the father has good sex with his wife, and his wife is likely to know and approve — and in one or two cases to join in.”

“First, because millions of people who are now refraining from touching, holding, and genitally caressing their children, when that is really a part of a caring, loving expression, are repressing the sexuality of a lot of children and themselves. Maybe this needs repressing, and maybe it doesn’t. My book should at least begin the exploration.”

“Second, I’m finding that thousands of people in therapy for incest are being told, in essence , that their lives have been ruined by incest. In fact, their lives have not generally been affected as much by the incest as by the overall atmosphere. My book should help therapists put incest in perspective.”

Dr. Farrell has two daughters.  I should go interview them (when they turn 18, if they haven’t) as to whether they have been able to live down their famous father’s reputation, and whether they agree with his comments back then. I suppose I could ask Mrs. Farrell, but typically anyone that can stick around for literature like this sort of has to work out a compromise, or buy into it wholesale, I imagine. . . . .  Anyhow, there’s more than one way to sell articles & books and become “leading authors” ; one way is by offending people who then blog it to protest it….

(Bipartisan Commission:  translation:  Republicans and Democrats and even some progressive among the Democrats can unite, as can the religious and the atheist, when it comes to complaining about women have too much power.  After all (says the 1993 article above), were they subject to the draft and forced to fight as infantry on the front lines when they turned 18?  {{If they did, then I suppose the older females would have to breed the next generation of soldiers to die worldwide in combat zones in wars started over . . . . over . . . . . . . [??  See Iraq, Viet Nam, etc.]}}

If it has a logo like this, it MUST be legitimate, right?

As it turns out, Dr. Farrell went and assembled the Commission after he attempted to get in on as advisor to the White House Council on Women and Girls,” as even their own site says:

The proposal for a White House Council on Boys to Men was originally inspired by a discussion initiated by the White House Boards and Commissions Director Joanna Martin to Dr. Warren Farrell, inquiring of [her “WTF” response to?] his interest in advising the White House Council on Women and Girls, given his background with the National Organization for Women.*** Shortly after, Dr. Farrell created a multi-partisan Commission of thirty-four prominent authors, educators, researchers and practitioners to accomplish three goals: investigate the status of boys and their journey into manhood; identify both surface and underlying problems confronting boys and men; create a blueprint toward solutions. This proposal is the result.”

A problem-free society as designed by White House Councils on this and that — what a vision….

Council on Women and Girls

The White House Council on Women and Girls was created by Executive Order in 2009, and promptly, Valerie Jarrett (Obama’s right-hand woman, not counting Michelle) got the title role, appropriate for someone who, and her connections, were  influential in helping him get to the White House to start with.)

The White House Council on Women and Girls, has as its members the head of every federal agency and major White House office, so that everyone shares in this responsibility. The Council is chaired by Valerie Jarrett and Tina Tchen serves as the Executive Director. By placing the Council in the White House, we not only emphasize its work, but provide a central point for coordination and cooperation with the overall goals of the Administration. This structure is critical because as the President said at the Executive Order signing, the issues facing women today “are not just women’s issues. When women make less than men for the same work, it hurts families who find themselves with less income, and have to work harder just to get by.

Like the 2001 Office of Faith-Based initiatives (Bush) and the previous Memorandum re:  Fatherhood (Clinton) these were executive branch directives that helped ‘REDESIGN GOVERNMENT” — which should be voted on, not executive-order-grafted in.  ANyhow, they are here, and while Clinton said all the Federal Government EXECUTIVE Branch agencies, department, and programs should restructure, reconsider, incorporate, evaluate (?) and basically think “Fatherhood” because welfare is biased against men to favor Moms.   That’s going strong, last I heard.   Now, Obama, not to be outdone, continued to play to that audience and make large and increasingly grandiose promises (entailing transfer of funds) to organizations that are “fatherhood” . . . . . has also done it not to “motherhood” (that’s a word he has a mental block with) but to “Women and Girls” and in context, it’s expected that these mothers would not care for their own children growing up, but childcare providers would.  As such, they were women, but they were not really “mothers.”

Here we go with who are the Council on Women & Girls Designees within each department.

Designee Biographies

When the Council on Women and Girls was created, President Obama asked each Cabinet and Cabinet-level Secretary and White House Office to appoint a senior level person within their agency to serve as their designee to oversee the work of the Council. The biographies of those designees are included in this section.

You know I’m going to look at the Dept. of HHS, and we find that it is the Secretary of Health and Human Services, formerly governor of Kansas.  Council MEMBERs = all  Dept. heads, and under that, they have Designees.  The thing about the Secretary of HHS is that she is already by law (Code of Federal Regulations) also enabled to conduct demonstration projects utilizing access/visitation (fatherhood-based) grants, per 45 CFR 303.109, which you can look up yourself at this link (TITLE 45 refers to “Public Welfare”)

303.109 – Procedures for State monitoring, evaluation and reporting on programs funded by Grants to States for Access and Visitation Programs.

(b) Evaluation. The State: (1) May evaluate all programs funded under Grants to States for Access and Visitation Programs; (2) Must assist in the evaluation of significant or promising projects as determined by the Secretary.

States wanting these funds (and who wouldn’t in these times?) must take on projects as determined by the Secretary, or whoever pushes these projects to the Secretary of HHS, resulting in authorization. Access Visitation funding goes, for example, (as I can see it) to programs like Paternity Opportunity Program (Shasta County, California) between the Dept. of Child Support Services there and a Hospital District. It references 45 CFR 303.109 and pays $10/person on invoice (From these funds) to provide its information to “Natural unwed mother and father.”  Alternately, the Hospital could NOT sign up with POP and be in violation of a Family Code.  (See 2nd to last & last para on page 1 of 2).

On another note, the Child Support Dept. at least in this county (and in 2010) it says is “34% state and 66% federal.” (Who pays the piper calls the tune.  Sounds like the so-called “Local” Child Support department is primarily federalized at this point…)

Here’s another contract from Tarrant County Texas, accessing these funds and citing this code’s purpose; in Texas, the Office of Attorney General is quite open about its dealings with this grants system, and they indeed endorse and promote fatherhood agenda.

CONTRACT FOR ACCESS AND VISITATION GRANT BETWEEN THE OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE STATE OF TEXAS

AND TARRANT COUNTY    

ARTICLE 1 INTRODUCTION SECTION 1.1 PARTIES

Contract No.: 09-00003

This Contract (“Contract”) is entered into by and between the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Texas (“OAG”) and Tarrant County (“Contractor”). The OAG and the Contractor may be referred to in this Contract individually as a “Party” and collectively as “Parties.”

SECTION 1.2 AUTHORITY

This Contract is entered into pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §669b, which enables states to establish and administer programs to support and facilitate non-custodial parents’ access to and visitation with their children. …

1.3.2 Source of Funding Funds paid by the OAG to the Contractor under this Contract are Access and Visitation Grant funds

awarded to the OAG by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“DHHS”).

(For a quick review, go to the HHS site (or, I’ve blogged it plenty):  42 U.S.C. §669b, authorizes the grants to states, and 45 303.109 regulates what they can do with the grants.    The Office of Child Support Enforcement (which is under HHS) administers these grants.

Allowable Services

States are permitted to use grant funds to develop programs and provide services such as:

  • Mediation
  • Development of parenting plans
  • Education
  • Counseling
  • Visitation enforcement (including monitored and supervised visitation, and neutral drop-off and pick-up)
  • Development of guidelines for visitation and alternative custody arrangements.

These are precisely the areas causing trouble in the family law situation, particularly when it comes to criminal matters of child abuse or domestic violence, B UT ALSO in the area where the fathers can be extorted into taking classes they neither want — nor need — which are run by people associated with the courts, i.e., it’s a racket…

That itself is quite a reframing (“redesign?”) of the purpose of these funds which were sold as a way to increase child support enforcement by involving fathers, and thereby, obviously helping solve our nations’ fiscal crises through more “research and demonstration” projects enabled without vote on the authority of one Executive Branch Designee.

Texas, here (Tarrant County, at least) chose to handle the situation by simply paying someone to do the job.  One year, the cost was $45,300 + $500 for conferences:

4.2.2

Table 1. Fiscal Year 2009 (September 1, 2008 through August 31, 2009), see Attachment C for Detailed Program Budget

Category Amount Salary $45,300 Fringe 0 Training and In-State Travel 500 Supplies 0  Contractual 0 Other 0 Total $45,800

More Tarrant County Links:

  • This group in particular seems to be on the Education/Training trend that, say, Kids’ Turn and other educational initiatives are.  Train, train train!  here’s a BBB review of the charity (nonprofit) which lists, among other classes:
  • Mission

    NewDay Services for Children and families states it’s purpose is to serve families in Tarrant County by providing Chaplains to the Family and Juvenile Court systems and providing specialized education programs for adults and children, impacted by divorce, juvenile crime, child abuse, neglect and delinquency in child support.

    Programs

    NewDay creates a continuum of care through community service organizations by providing specialized trainings, making referrals, training and using mentors that continue to serve when NewDay’s involvement diminishes. {{i.e., clients that continue to consume services…}}

    KIDS QUEST- a 4 hour activity based program for children of divorce, ages 4 – 12 years old. Designed by a play therapist and child psychologist, its goal is to give children the tools they need to better cope with their changing family due to separation or divorce.

  • http://fatherhood.hhs.gov/regions/region06.shtml (review – Newday services also links to them, and of course National Fatherhood Initiative)

Tarrant County Fatherhood Coalition
(a.k.a. Tarrant County Fatherhood Initiative)
Charles Scoma, Chair
Phone: 817.808.3933
Post Office Box 820010
Fort Worth, TX 76182

Mission Statement: A collaboration to strengthen the role of fathers, men and families in the lives of children in Tarrant County.

The Tarrant County Fatherhood Coalition holds meetings and special events focusing on young dads and all fathers. In the past year, their meetings have included training on the PAPA curriculum developed by the Office of the Attorney General’s Child Support Division, and Male Involvement/Male Health issues, job training and job referrals. Annually, they hold a community-wide, collaborative effort to raise awareness about the importance of father’s involvement in the lives of children. The event, “Celebrate Fatherhood,” is held in June to celebrate responsible fatherhood in Tarrant County. Several committees work together for this event to take place.

Given this, I doubt that there is a real need for a “White House Council on Boys to Men.”  why doesn’t Warren Farrell ask some of the existing organizations to given an account of why they haven’t made a real dent in the plight of powerless men, given how much money was dumped on the cause and has been for years?  I mean, every governmental agency (Executive Branch) and millions of funding has been put into every conceivable angle, from parent education, access visitation, chaplains (!) in the courts in Texas, to making sure women aren’t having too many babies on the sly from the Dads (Paternity Opportunity Program), and so forth.   Speaking of my photos at top of this post, there are also fatherhood programs (including some access-visitation related) whose purpose is to connect Dads in Jail with Kids with Dads in Jail.  I don’t mean to slight the obstacle of having a parent in jail, but when they are going in there for things like unpaid child support and then offered a quick-release by engaging in a parent education plan, taxpayer funded, I do have to question the wisdom of this.

Not everyone can be a Coach.  Not every imperfect human being (including divorcing) should have  to sit still and BE coached.  Didn’t we all learn this in Kindergarten, how to play by the rules and share?

More likely, This Bi-Partisan Commission knew a good thing when they saw it, and now wants a piece of the action (as well as continued access to, obviously boys. In the case of any organizations who are soft on incest and hard on women as the real criminals in life, {based on the “eve” model) I would suggest they don’t get more attention than they already have, or funding.

When I start seeing the fatherhood (and boy-) trainers and the anti-violence and woman-trainers conferencing and collaborating together, then I think we have a problem.  Is anyone aware of who these organizations, below, have helped — or how many lives they have saved?

This, too, is from an HHS website.  I have used up my blogging time (and space) again, today, so more on them, later, and how they relate to California needing to release thousands of prisoners because the jails are too crowded…..  Today’s post was more “chatted” than “crafted” and if it provoked some thought, or some “Huh?”s on what’s going on, that’s good enough for now.

RESOURCE CENTERS AND FAMILY VIOLENCE CENTERS

These appear to be more separate than they actually are.  They are quite linked.  Some of them were the visionary (which vision, is debatable), leveraged creation of just a few individuals.   Minnesota Program Development, Inc. (“Duluth Model”) definitely seems to have been this, and it’s obvious that (see post title — but not listed below) the “Family Justice Center Alliance” fit neatly with then-President Bush’s wish to get the faith groups in into service providing centers dealing with child sexual abuse and woman abuse (noted among faith groups to start with….) — as well as Mr. Gwinn’s need for something to do after moving out of the San Diego City Attorney’s Office.    Battered Women’s Justice Project, as well as conferencing with the Family  Justice Center National Alliance (re-arrange words to get the right one — it attended a conference in San Diego) — also collaborated with Association of Family and Conciliation courts (AFCC) recently to reframe [“explicate”]  “domestic violence” when custody is involved.  The AFCC being the primary carrier of “PAS” theory which puts kids back into the custody of an abuser (or, if you’re a Fathers and Family Follower, wrongfully accused maligned, innocent Dads who did NOT commit a crime — even if CPS or a District Attorney’s prosecution convicted them of one in a different forum ).

Either way, “the house always wins”  -because there is a class and a resource center (and now, justice centers) for any situation.

The “Duluth Abuse Intervention Project” in some ways is little different than the smaller (I think) version of Educational Marketer “Newday Services” in Tarrant County, Texas.  Both take advantage of the federal funding stream to market their materials, primarily training populations they get from the courts — and curricula to get the desired results.  The Texas Access Visitation funding  has perhaps a closer alliance with the AFCC  than it seems the Duluth Model did, however — how different, really, is “Batterers Intervention Programs” philosophy from the Parent Education philosophy?  Both believe that training is the key…. and take a lot of funding for it.   In the SF area, there’s the shape-shifting “ENDABUSE.org” which I learned here has no problem marketing to both the “health” side and the ‘Fatherhood” side of domestic violence prevention, all the while ignoring the existence of AFCC in its materials.   The “NCFCJ” below (notice the URLS) is a family law oriented group based in Nevada.

I

National Resource Centers on Family Violence

National Immigrant Family Violence Institute 
314-773-9090
www.nifvi.org exit disclaimer

National Resource Center on Domestic Violence 
800-537-2238
www.vawnet.org exit disclaimer

Battered Women’s Justice Project
Criminal and Civil Center
800-903-0111 ext. 1
www.bwjp.org exit disclaimer

Battered Women’s Justice Project
Self-Defense Center 
800-903-0111 ext. 3
www.bwjp.org exit disclaimer

Health Resource Center on
Domestic Violence

888-792-2873 
www.endabuse.org exit disclaimer

Resource Center on Domestic Violence:
Child Protection and Custody

800-527-3223
www.ncjfcj.org/dept/fvd exit disclaimer

Sacred Circle: National Resource Center to End Violence Against Native Women
877-733-7623
www.sacred-circle.com exit disclaimer

Alianza: The National Latino Alliance for the Elimination of Domestic Violence
800-342-9908 
www.dvalianza.org exit disclaimer

Asian & Pacific Islander Institute on Domestic Violence APIA Health Forum
415-954-9988
www.apiahf.org/apidvinstitute exit disclaimer

Institute on Domestic Violence in the 
African American Community

877-643-8222

www.dvinstitute.org exit disclaimer

National Training and TA Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health
312-726-7020
www.dvmhpi.org exit disclaimer

**IAADV (“2nd from last) is worth some note, as it’s a fatherhood group, and I believe also Minnesota-based:

Institute on Domestic Violence in the African American Community (IDVAAC)

The Institute on Domestic Violence in the African American Community (Institute) seeks to raise awareness of the impact of domestic violence in the African American community, to identify community needs and best practices needed to eliminate domestic violence, and to facilitate local and national conference and training forums on domestic violence. The Institute organizes community forums, conducts reseaC7Jrch, and performs policy analysis. Additionally, the Institute produces publications and uses other forms of media and works collaboratively with other organizations to share knowledge and experience for developing culturally competent responses to domestic violence among African Americans.

NATIONAL AND SPECIAL ISSUE RESOURCE CENTERS

National Resource Center on Domestic Violence

The National Resource Center on Domestic Violence (NRCDV), a project of the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence, employs a multidisciplinary staff and supports a wide range of free, comprehensive and individualized technical assistance and training, as well as specialized resource materials such as resource packets, applied research papers, and training materials. In addition, the NRCDV operates a number of special projects designed to explore issues more deeply or develop more comprehensive assistance to a particular constituent group. These special projects include the Domestic Violence Awareness Projects, VAWnet – the National Online Resource Center on Violence Against Women (funded by CDC), the Women of Color Network, Building Comprehensive Solutions to Domestic Violence, and the recently completed national Domestic Violence Shelter Study (conducted with support from the National Institute of Justice).

Battered Women’s Justice Project

The Battered Women’s Justice Project (BWJP) consists of two partnering agencies that operate in separate locations:

  • The Criminal and Civil Justice Center is a project of the Minnesota Program Development, Inc. The criminal section focuses on effective intervention through interagency coordination and policy development that guides individual practitioners in their understanding of the use of arrest, prosecution, sentencing of abusers, victim safeguards, and batterer intervention programs. The Center provides technical assistance and advocacy to domestic violence victims of military personnel and supports the development of a coordinated response to domestic violence on military bases. The civil section provides leadership in the civil legal arena by improving victim access to civil court options and legal representations in civil court processes. Staff provides consultation to advocates, attorneys, battered women, court personnel, and policy makers on advocacy, representation and pro bono assistance, judicial practice, monitoring, civil court model protocols, and public policy. The civil justice component typically deals with legal issues, including civil protection orders, divorce, custody, child support, economic restoration, landlord-tenant, credit, employment, arbitration, mediation, and immigration.

SAMPLE SEARCHES:

If you go to USASpending.gov and look some of these up, especially if you can get a DUNS# for any of them, you’ll see that they often outshine their competitors (collectively, and some, individually) in the categories of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA, a.k.a., what  you provide the IRS) where they are getting Discretionary, Research and Demonstration, etc. grants.  I’ve posted a few DUNS#s in the last posts.

Some of the groups also have an associated fund-raising group to go with it, as does NCFCJ:

Foundation Center Data on NCFCJ (written out)

http://dynamodata.fdncenter.org/990s/990search/esearch.php

results:

ORGANIZATION NAME

STATE

YEAR

TOTAL ASSETS

FORM

PAGES

EIN

National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges NV 2009 $2,742,133 990 40 36-2486896
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges NV 2008 $3,329,058 990 52 36-2486896
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges NV 2007 $3,530,962 990 50 36-2486896
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges NV 2004 $2,322,334 990 25 36-2486896
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges Fund Inc. NV 2009 $2,278,092 990EZ 14 94-3109663

(SITE notes some problems for IRS receipts in a certain year rang, I think 2007-2009.  The PDF I just looked at for 2002-2003 for the topic entity shows GOVERNMENT SUPport $12 million, PUBLIC support, around $1,000. …  Salaries & wages, $7 million, Program services $5 million, etc.  Contracts and Honorariums, $1+ million etc.  The organization’s address is a PO Box in Reno; its one director (in this year), a man from Sparks, Nevada, and an “E. Hunter Hurst III” from Pittsburg (no “h”), PA  Their mutual pay (granted, it’s a big organization) is a little above and a little below what I heard Los Angeles County Superior Court Judges get (NOT including any double-dipped benefits), i.e., back then $157K for one, and $180K for another.  They are spending most of the $12 million the US granted them — that year — so — the benefits to the public are  ? _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

I decided to look up this “E. Hunter Hurst, III” and found he is/was also Director of a “Providence Service Corporation” out of Tuscon, AZ, and had a masters in social service, bachelors in psychology. The site acknowledges him as director of NCFCJ (1973 til retirement in 2003) and also lists his compensation from Providence, around $70K, plus other fees/benefits.  I think we should know about it.  This was found on a “Forbes” list and I had to get through a Scientology quote to get to this URL:

Hunter Hurst

Independent Director

Providence Service Corporation

Tucson ,  AZ

Sector: HEALTHCARE  /  Specialized Health Services {such as??}

72 Years Old
Hunter Hurst, III has served as our director since December 1996 and chairperson of the nominating and corporate governance committee of our board of directors since May 2005. Mr. Hurst served as Director of the National Center for Juvenile Justice from its founding in 1973 until his retirement in May 2008. The Center (NCJJ)  is the leading resource for juvenile justice research and statistics in the western hemisphere. He has directed over thirty applied research studies and has authored numerous publications relating to juvenile issues. He received his bachelor?s degree in psychology and master?s degree in social work from Louisiana State University in 1960 and 1965, respectively.
Director Compensation (Providence Service Corporation) for 2009
Fees earned or paid in cash $70,000.00

Who is “Providence Service Corp?”  Well:

PRSC Profile  (Volume appears to be $167 million….)

Providence Service Corporation is a government outsourcing privatization company, which provides government sponsored social services directly and through not-for-profit social services organizations.

Providence Service
64 East Broadway Boulevard
Tucson, AZ 85701
Phone: (520) 747-6600
Fax: (520) 747-6605
Web Site: www.provcorp.com

Price and Chart delayed at least 15 minutes.
Price$ 12.85 Change-0.13
Open13.05 % Change-1.0%
Prev Close12.98 Volume19,026
Market Value167 mil P/E Ratio9.0
Bid12.85 EPS1.43
Ask12.88 Dividend0.00
High13.16 Yield0.0
Low12.79 Shares Out13 mil
52wk High18.27 52wk Low11.88
Industry: Specialized Health Services
Sector: Healthcare

(IS this a conflict of interest?  What do you think?)

(i.e., the FUND is a separate EIN from the organzation itself, but either way, it’s representing the Family Law industry primarily, only Juvenile will also be dealing with criminal issues.  I’m not knocking this as a resource center — it’s impressive:

When reading the words “family violence department” under this group’s banner, it’s important to acknowledge what they claim to do, and who the organizing entity is — it’s a COUNCIL OF JUDGES — as it says.  They are not a District Attorney’s office, criminal defense or prosecuting attorneys.  The words ‘Family Court” and “judges” should speak loudly:

FAMILY VIOLENCE DEPARTMENT MISSION STATEMENT

The Family Violence Department improves the way courts, law enforcement agencies, and others respond to family violence, while recognizing the legal, cultural, and psychological dynamics involved with the ultimate goal of improving the lives of domestic violence victims and their children.

The Family Violence Department will accomplish its mission by:

  1. Providing training;
  2. Providing technical assistance;
  3. Providing policy development leadership; and
  4. Developing cutting-edge products for professionals, victims of domestic, and children.

Domestic violence puts millions of women and their families at risk each year and is one of the single greatest social ills impacting the nation. The Family Violence Department (FVD) of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) has advanced social change in courts and communities across the country by providing cutting-edge training, technical assistance, and policy development on issues of family violence. The NCJFCJ’s projects have enhanced the safety, well-being, and stability of domestic violence victims and their children by improving the way criminal, civil, and social justice systems respond to family violence.  Such projects include the:

The decision to go for Supervised Visitation rather than complete separation from a perpetrator has a history that’s not always public.  The option go for ongoing training is often at public expense — both when the training fails to take effect (or no one mentions the contrary-training coming from other sources).  And, it’s also, being a grants recipient, also to that extent, and being a nonprofit, “at public expense.”  Individuals (not “practitioners”) calling any of these “resource centers” for more than information to download – for actual help — are in for a surprise.  It’s not offered, and even the most persistent will rarely find out the most important information — has your judge disclosed properly?  WHo is administering the federal grants to your local jurisdiction, and is that person involved in your custody case?  Is the judge ruling in a custody case involved in allocating any child-support federal incentives, etc  . . . . .

MPDI same database:

our query: ( Organization Name: minnesota program development inc. , State: “MN” , Zip: None Chosen , EIN: None Chosen , Fiscal Year: None Chosen )
6 documents matched. 6 documents displayed.

ORGANIZATION NAME

STATE

YEAR

TOTAL ASSETS

FORM

PAGES

EIN

Minnesota Program Development Inc. MN 2005 $1,898,718 990 17 41-1382134
Minnesota Program Development Inc. MN 2004 $1,940,803 990 16 41-1382134
Minnesota Program Development Inc. MN 2003 $1,887,601 990 15 41-1382134
Minnesota Program Development Inc. MN 2002 $1,774,265 990 17 41-1382134
Minnesota Program Development, Inc. MN 2007 $1,887,120 990 23 41-1382134
Minnesota Program Development, Inc. MN 2006 $1,844,847 990 18 41-1382134

(but if I search only on that EIN, minus the dashes, nothing comes up….although doing this to NCFCJ, I did get results.)

Search Again

Under the 2005 990 PDF (grants over $4 million, public support, a good deal less) its 501(c)3 is simply “services to prevent domestic violence”  — and listed under “Statement of Program Services Accomplishments” there are 4:

  • Battered Women’s Justice Project

Grantsandallocations $ 977 248  ► (Program Service Expenses) $ 2,756,428.

  •  DOMESTIC ABUSE INTERVENTION PROJECT

► (Program Service Expenses) $ 283,793.

NOTE:  My studies show that this actually “is” MPDI, from what I can tell… This was the heart of the program to start with.

  • MENDING THE SACRED HOOP

► (Program Service Expenses) $ 63,793.

  • DAIP TRAINING AND RESOURCES

► (Program Service Expenses) $ 389,470.

  • “See Statement 3”

► (Program Service Expenses) $ 735,035.

  • TOTAL SPENT (just about $14K more than their revenues, leaving still assets of over $1 million.  )

Books are in the care of a Scott Miller (also one of their trainers, evidently — DNR if I published that post or not).

In this year, the Board of Directors were only 4 (Ellen Pence not being listed, she is associated with another subsidiary group I gather)

Denise Gamache (Search on my blog — she’s sitting over the $3+ million grants to MPDI) Rhonda Martinson, Loretta Frederick (Legal Counsel), Connie Sponsler (Training Coordinator) and Christina Olson.

Loretta Frederick is I believe associated with BWJP, although I could be wrong.  My question being, who are these 4 women (or — the board of directors of ANY nonprofit, for that matter) to drive the agenda that determines whether I, or my children, get to live, or die — by taking money from HHS to insist that a certain model — and the heart of that model being both Batterers Intervention, Supervised Visitation, and a Multi-disciplinary model (called “CCR” ) is the answer to stop violence against — women and children, or for that matter against men, by women?)

Any more than, how come the 6 or 7 women atop another nonprofit based in Denver (Center for Policy Research) should have similar levels of influence, and privilege?

I showed a picture of 202 East Superior in a recent post.  It’s just a storefront in Duluth, Minnesota.  Rather than flying all over, why don’t these people take a simple car ride, next year, over to the Fatherhood Summit (also too place in Minnesota) and report honestly to the public — not just practitioners -on what THEY are doing with our federal funds?

Praxis, International lists two addresses in MN as their nonprofit, and its executive Director is Ellen Pence – it, too, works with OVW grants:

Praxis International

Praxis International, Inc. is a nonprofit research and training organization that works toward the elimination of violence in the lives of women and children. We work with local, statewide, and national reform initiatives to bridge the gap between what people need and what institutions provide. Since 1996, we have worked with advocacy organizations, intervention agencies, and inter-agency collaborations to create a clear and cooperative agenda for social change in their communities.

Ellen Pence, founder and Executive Director of Praxis, is honored by a collection of articles in the most recent edition of the Violence Against Women journal, for her many years of steadfast work in the battered women’s movement. Congratulations Ellen, and thank you for your lifelong commitment to improving the lives of battered women and their children!

Praxis International, in partnership with the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW), is excited to announce the Blueprint for Safety Adaptation Demonstration Project (Blueprint Project). Praxis will work directly with three selected sites to create customized versions of the Blueprint for Safety: An Interagency Response to Domestic Violence Crimes; OVW will also provide financial support to the selected sites. Check back for further information.

To purchase a printed copy of the Blueprint for Safety: An Interagency Response to Domestic Violence Crimes, go to our products page.

As one can see from some of the topics (and note, SUpervised Visitation is an ongoing theme), it’s not about why supervised visitation, but HOW (“practice” ) to do it.  The entire field of Supervised Visitation got a huge boost from applying it to situations of violence between spouses, and Karen Oehme (another “practitioner” and writer, of course) was (is?) head of the Florida Clearinghouse for Supervised Visitation Centers — a concept which DULUTH pioneered.  Naturally, they are going to write about this and publish and sell what they write, one way or another, even if the whole things is heavily federally subsidized under the presumption that it’s a good idea.

http://www.praxisinternational.org/praxis_event_recordings.aspx

Safety During Post-Separation
Loretta Frederick, February 2007

Audiio IconListen to recording


Recording titleThe Intersection of Battering and Child Sexual Abuse
Karen Oehme and Scott Hampton, December 2006

Audiio IconListen to recording 


Recording titleThe Co-Occurrence of Domestic Violence and Child Sexual Abuse: Implications for Supervised Visitation and Exchange Programs
Karen Oehme, December 2006

Audiio IconListen to recording

Part 1: Battered Women’s Experience of Visitation and Exchange Centers
Ellen Pence and a panel of women who used visitation centers, May 2006

Audiio IconListen to recording
These can (and probably will) go on, forever, including until the US debt tops $15 trillion, which it is heading towards.  No matter.  there’s always room for a panel of experts, whether or not their expertise (and its expense) is contributing to the pressure of the populations they continue to study and write about….

Sometimes they will get together and compliment each other, citing which organization they represent:

With “Equal Regard”: An Overview of How Ellen Pence Focused the Supervised Visitation Field on Battered Women and Children

  1. Melissa Scaia

    1. Advocates for Family Peace, Grand Rapids, MN, mscaia@stopdomesticabuse.org
  1. Laura Connelly

    1. Advocates for Family Peace, Grand Rapids, MN

Abstract

Ellen Pence has changed the framework for doing supervised visitation and safe exchanges in cases of domestic violence. Ellen challenged the basic tenets of “neutrality” and a primary focus on “safety for children” in the supervised visitation field. By incorporating equal regard for the safety of adult victims of domestic violence and children, Ellen challenged supervised visitation centers to reexamine their mission, role, intake/orientation, documentation, and rules for their programming. She designed services for supervised visitation that would account for battering of women and children while not being excessively policing and providing a respectful and fair atmosphere for men who batte

They should thank Ellen Pence for endorsing and promoting the concept that Batterers Intervention Programs actually stop or reduce battering behavior, which DAIP promoted to start with.  STOP DOMESTIC ABUSE (a.k.a. Advocates for Family Peace) has on its site, today, a promotion for:

NOW AVAILABLE

Addressing Fatherhood with Men who Batter – 1st edition

Written by: Melissa Scaia, MPA, Laura Connelly, and John Downing

Forward by: Ellen Pence, PHD

Consultants: Ellen Pence, PhD, & Sylvia Olney, MA, LMFT

To order the curriculum and/or DVD click here ** Non Profits must also complete and submit a ST3 form with their order to avoid being charged sales tax click here

To preview the DVD click here

To sign-up for the September 2010 training offered in Duluth by the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project

(Of course this group has its own Intervention program, which a link on the page shows, when men are court-ordered into a program by receiving a civil order of protection).  This is what it does:

Purpose of the Intervention Program for Men and Fathers (IPMF)

The IPMF attempts to examine how men can build on their strengths to live a non-violent life. The primary goal of IPMF is to end violence against men, women, and children. The program holds men completely responsible for their behavior. The program educates men about choosing and developing non-violent behaviors. The program asks participants to stand back and look at the impact of their actions on themselves, their partner, their children, and their community in order to change.

I wonder how many dead women did this before going for an order of protection, or anti-stalking order.  Surely that approach will work if someone else tries it…

“Advocates for Family Peace” just so happens to be? a “Wellstone Family Program” and they also jsut so happen to be running supervised visitation AND “therapeutic supervised visitation” centers in this Grand Rapids area:  Kinda reminds me of CRCkids.org.    This goes on, and on, and one:

The Wellstone Family Safety Program (WFSP) is a safe and friendly place that provides a positive and nurturing environment to promote healthy parent/child relationships.  The WFSP also reduces children’s exposure to domestic violence.

What services are offered?

The Wellstone Family Safety Program provides services to children up to the age of 18, who are from families where there has been a history of domestic violence.  Services are also provided to children who are in foster care.

Families that use the WFSP can be referred through the court, Human Services, attorneys, mediation, or they can refer themselves.

WFSP Services

Supervised Visitation

The Wellstone Family Safety Program offers on-site supervised visitation in Family Resource Centers throughout Itasca County.  Supervised visits allow non-custodial parents to continue or even begin a relationship with their child/children.

Therapeutic Supervised Visitation

Therapeutic supervised visitations are conducted when a family** has a history of sexual abuse of a child, there has been a long period of separation between the parent and child(ren), the non-custodial parent’s behavior scares the child(ren) or the last time the child(ren) saw the parent was during a violent incident.  A therapeutic visit operates similarly to a supervised visit, except that a licensed therapist is the person supervising the visit.  The therapist interacts with the family prior to, during, and after the visit to mend and heal the parent/child(ren) relationship.

Of course, it’s important for children to be able to get along with and respect people who have molested them, and of course if one parent only did the molesting, that it’s most vital to make sure the relationship with that parent can be mended.  Mothers who don’t approve of this (nowadays) are likely to find themselves in the position of having “supervised visitation” ordered on THEM, because of “alienating” behavior.  (What rock did THIS crawl out from under?)

(Actually, I know — but am just blogging it so more people know)….

ORGANIZATION NAME

STATE

YEAR

TOTAL ASSETS

FORM

PAGES

EIN

Advocates for Family Peace MN 2009 $1,260,301 990 29 41-1377489
Advocates for Family Peace MN 2009 $1,224,928 990 25 41-1377489
(notice — the charts show assets — not expenses and revenues, which are a different category).  The 501(c)3 purpose of this is similar — stopping violence:
“To Provide Services, Resources, and Skilled Advocacy (Therapy?) to help battered adults in Itasca County; to reduce violence in their lives, to participate in a network of services (that’s for sure!), to advocate for institutional and social change that stops violence against women…”
{{How about starting with the institution of supervised visitation and the concept behind it that you can train someone to change their character, when in the United States, the COnstitution sets up the concept of liberty & justice, based on common laws to be equally enforced, and defining right and wrong, etc.)}}
Expenses include $43,220 for 26 supervised exchanges and 91 supervised Visits….  $37K for Emergency Safe housing for 21 women and 23 children, $23K for transitional housing (flee the home, let the perpetrators stay)… that actually, however, is a more legitimate type of expense.  Family Court will catch them sooner or later, for the most part, anyhow, or a child support order, if one happens, will go reel in Daddy…  I don’t recognize the (many) Board members, except I do know that Melissa Scaia has been featured on webinars run jointly by BJWP (Battered Women’s Justice Project) and a group in Maine.      She works 40 hours a week for next to nothing ($13K per 990) so some other form of income obviously would be necessary).  Here is some of it — definitely “in the loop” and has also testified as a DV expert in criminal cases in court:
You will see several of the groups (including NCFCJ & Praxis) in this listing, apparently a presentation at a medical group:
Melissa Scaia and Scott MillerMelissa Scaia
Melissa is the executive director of Advocates for Family Peace in Minnesota. Melissa co-facilitates a group with men who batter and a group with women who use violence. She provides training and technical assistance as a consultant for Praxis International and serves as a faculty member for the Family Violence Department for the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges. She has conducted trainings for the Battered Women’s Justice Project, Duluth Domestic Abuse Intervention Program and the National Network to End Domestic Violence. She has testified as an expert witness on domestic violence in criminal court cases. She wrote her master’s thesis on the effects of domestic violence on children and wrote her doctoral dissertation proposal to address supervised visitation services for battered women. {{DID SHE READ JACK STRATON, Ph.D. (not in sociology, etc.)?  I’d like to see what she has to say about his take in Supervised Visitation, which, being presented in Duluth (i think) around 1992, questioned its use at all in such cases….}}She has contributed to numerous publications related to supervised visitation and domestic violence. She recently co-wrote a curriculum and DVD for working with men who batter as fathers entitled, “Addressing Fatherhood with Men Who Batter”. She is currently writing the final draft on a curriculum for working with women who have used violence in intimate relationships entitled, “Turning Points: An Educational Curriculum for Women Who Use Violence in Intimate Relationships.”

Battering is a crime.  Why is it necessary to “address fatherhood” with such criminals?  Or is it not a crime, and are we all, collectively (including any victims who survived and are wage-earners) somehow responsible to “reach” the batterer and convince him (in this case)that’s it’s REALLY not nice, or sensible, and is impacting their “fatherhood” in  a collective dream that this will stop them the nexst time around?

Phillip Garrido is a father, let’s go train him — right?  OH, I forgot — he took someone else’s child to rape, falsely imprison after kidnapping, and beget children by, so he gets treated as a criminal not someone that a fatherhood program could be targeted to (at least, so I hope).  If so, they should use a faith-based one, as he definitely had some religious ramblings going on there, too, inbetween keeping his victim captive of 18 years, and her having to lie to her own daughters, telling them she was their sister….

(Sorry . . . it was on the news again recently, and the victim is going to be speaking out about her experience this summer.  A TV station was crowing that it got the interview…)

Scott has worked in the women’s movement since 1985 and has been with the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project since 2000. As team leader for the DAIP, Scott coordinates Duluth’s Coordinated Community Response {“CCR”} to domestic violence. Serving as system advocate and coordinator of the men’s non-violence program, he is instrumental in the evolving work in Duluth and provides training to others on the Duluth Model of Intervention. Scott provides training regarding conducting interviews and a mutli-disciplinary team approach to the investigation of child abuse based on his experience as a forensic interviewer for First Witness Child Abuse Resource Center in Duluth.

OK, here’s a NCJRS (remembering how Melissa Scaia is — she’s on faculty at the NCFCJ) publication honoring Ellen Pence, who is (for her part0 now honoring the “Family Justice Center Initiative” which is why I’m a little pissed presently as it came from a city in my state which already sponsored another problemmatic group with murky finances –a nd which is itself being modeled nationwide and globally (is the general idea), called Kids Turnsd.org……  Same legislator promoting both concepts….  Guess she just likes kids (and her life partner, a woman, also likes those city contracts, as I blogged, citing a blogger at sandiegoonline called “historymatters”).  

http://www.ncjrs.gov/app/publications/Abstract.aspx?id=253873Scott Miller

NCJ Number: NCJ 231795
Title: Violence Against Women: Essays in Honor of Ellen Pence
Journal: Violence Against Women  Volume:16  Issue:9  Dated:September 2010  Pages:979 to 1060
Author(s): Shamita Das Dasgupta (“Manavi.org*”) ; Edward W. Gondolf ; Melissa Scaia ; Laura Connelly* ; Jane M. Sadusky (opposing gay marriage ban in Calif, consulting in WI, writing with/for? Ellen & BWJP**); Rhonda Martinson ; Kristine Lizdas ; Casey McGee ; Rebecca Emerson Dobash ; Russell Dobash ; Mark Wynn
Editor(s): Claire M. Renzetti ; Barbara J. Hart ; Scott Miller
Document Url: HTML
Publisher Url*: http://www.sagepub.com
Publication Date: 09/2010
Pages: 86
Type: Literature reviews
Origin: United States
Language: English
Note: Special Issue: Essays in Honor of Ellen Pence
Annotation: A collection of essays are presented in honor of the contributions made by Ellen Pence in the field of intimate partner violence both in the United States and abroad.
Abstract: The authors of the following seven essays emphasize the profound impact and changes that Ellen Pence’s work has had on social institutions and individual lives with her commitment to ensuring the safety of women and children and her belief in the possibility of personal and social change. The first article traces Ellen’s vital contributions to the field of anti-domestic violence advocacy through two organizations, the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project (DAIP) and Praxis. The second article discusses Ellen Pence’s contribution in helping build the foundation of batterer programming. The third article explains the philosophy and method of the Duluth Model men’s program, and the need to put the experience of women who have been abused at the center of work conducted with abusive men. The fourth article explains how Ellen Pence has changed the framework for doing supervised visitation and safe exchanges in cases of domestic violence. The fifth article describes Pence’s development of the Praxis Safety and Accountability Audit (Safety Audit), which provided a new and distinctive tool for a community response to domestic violence. The sixth article presents six appreciation letters from Britain and Europe on Pence’s efforts and impact on the domestic women’s movement. The seventh and final essay offers both personal and professional reflections on the contributions of Ellen Pence to changes in law enforcement responses to domestic violence victims and offenders. References
*Manavi.org is a bit different, in that the women it serves “”South Asian” women are those who identify themselves as being from Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, or Sri Lanka “

Edward W. Gondolf (not a name I knew) — BA Princeton, MPH, Pittsburg, on faculty at IUP (Indiana University of PA), it says:

Dr. Gondolf has achieved a national reputation in the field of domestic violence that has brought numerous invitations for research, writing, and guest lectures. He has presented numerous invited lectures on the effectiveness of batterer programs, and been quoted or cited in a variety of prominent national newspapers and magazines: Scientific American, Psychiatric News, USA Today, The New York Times Magazine, Chicago Tribune, L.A. Times, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, Pittsburgh Press, Philadelphia Inquirer, Seattle Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Dallas Morning News, Time Magazine, Ms. Magazine, Bride’s Magazine, Mademoiselle Magazine, and Changes Magazine

**Sadusky pdf shows “New Perspectives on Supervised Visitation and Safe Exchange,” put out by Praxis International, supported by a grant.  Keep them grants a-coming….

Browse through THIS and see many of the above groups referenced, including Family VIolence Prevention Fund, and a good bit of discussion on the Duluth Model, Power & Control Wheel, etc.  These will no doubt continue — and underplay the role of the field of the Family Law Practitioners forming a parallel, fatherhood-oriented set of nonprofits (to match the feminist-oriented — supposedly — VAW groups, although studied more closely most of them just are in the business, like it, and promote it — like any other professionals.  What differentiates both sides of the equation — alas — is that access to Federal Grants To Facilitate, Demonstrate, Research and (other discretionary stuff) can very well be addictive.   As this documentation fuels many networks, now, the equivalent of changing it might be something like setting up a new entire WATER system for a regions, plumbing, purification, septic tanks, input, output, and “the whole nine yards.”

The SPECIAL RESOURCE CENTERS are inbred, at too many levels.  I personally found their information relevant.  Not one of the family law practitioners I was in front of (or had hired) in the time from filing a protective order to the time I no longer saw my kids (and some time thereafter) thought any of it relevant to custody however, — and given the AFCC stranglehold on doctrine and judicial training — it probably wasn’t.

That’s one among several reasons I say, if the “CCR” (Coordinated COmmunity Response) model ain’t working, can we either de-fund it, try something else, or try nothing, which probably wouldn’t be much less expensive  People will still kill each other if offended, or if losing control of a codependent relationship with a partner, or loss of status going along with loss of custody.  Then there is the matter of child support.  . . .  BILLIONS spent per year, and then there are “compromise of Arrears Programs that hardly a mother is told of.

These are my children’s and grandchildren’s futures, and future landscape.  It for sure is what’s left (i.e., none) of anything that might accrue to their retirement IF they rely on social security.  This won’t stop our government from financing the theory that everyone should go get jobs — although the leaders themselves are instead positioning themselves to acquire wealth, and connection with wealth, be on board of profitable businesses (including nonprofits that get government work contracted to them sometimes) and in general teach THEIR offspring how business and finances actually work, including how not to pay more taxes than necessary by forming trusts, foundations, and other tax-exempt entities, then running around changing the world (and sowing some wild oats).

In looking up some of these groups, I found a very odd site that listed several of them together in one place (they do, after all, hang out together — they “ARE” the coordinated community, for sure.  How many lives they are saving, or improving the safety of, remains to be seen. . . . .  This one showed that (recently — talking May, 2011) the Head of the International Monetary Fund has felony charges pending in NYC for sexual assault (not of a relative).  They settled his bail and house arrest (pretty high).   He (? presumably) is married with four children.

Here, for what it’s worth:  Rap sheet of Dominque Strauss-Kahn former head of an organization in many ways ruling the world, and apparentl in private, expects to dominate as well, including sexually:

Examine the bail application Dominique Strauss-Khan

The Grand Jury of New York City seven count indictment of Dominique Strauss-Kahn

IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn: The counts include two of committing a criminal sexual act, one of attempted rape, one of unlawful imprisonment, two of sexual abuse and one of forcible touching.
Examine the statement in the charge sheet against Strauss-Kahn testified to by Detective Steven Lane of the Manhattan Special Victims Squad after taking evidence from a 32-year-old chambermaid:

“The defendant engaged in oral sexual conduct and anal sexual conduct with another person by forcible compulsion; the defendant attempted to engage in sexual intercourse with another person by forcible compulsion; the defendant subjected another person to sexual contact by forcible compulsion; the defendant restrained another person; the defendant subjected another person to sexual contact without the latter’s consent; and in that the defendant intentionally, and for no legitimate purpose, forcibly touched the sexual and intimate parts of another person for the purpose of degrading and abusing such person, and for the purpose of gratifying the defendant’s sexual desire./

Examine the bail application of former International Monetary Fund director Dominique
Strauss-Kahn: The bail conditions imposed by New York state Supreme Court Justice
Michael Obus include posting $1 million in cash and a $5 million insurance bond
secured by his house. He must wear an electronic monitor and have an armed guard at
all times. He won’t be able to leave his residence except for legal, medical and religious travel

On the other hand, LATimes fires back, why the media leak?

And the Telegraph in UK speculates on the legal defenses

After the alleged attack, he went to have lunch with his 26 yr old daughter, a Columbia Student..  Whatever the results, he will not be in a crowded gymnasium as pictured at the top of the post.  However, just for the record, some of this behavior –is what the struggle in the courts is about, as Warren Farrell I’m sure realizes.  Society just isn’t ready for Incest yet.  . . . .  But that doesn’t stop it from happening in high circles or low circles.  Meanwhile, the circles of collaborations on how to stop this and other forms of violence, go on, endlessly.

(For what it’s worth, I just searched and posted a full day on this one, thinking about the groups…..)

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