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AFCC Coordinates Parenting Coord (and the courts…); Democrats spearhead next Fatherhood Legislation HR 2193.

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Fathers, Parents — what’s the diff?

For the Democrats Spearheading the “My Fatherhood Package is bigger than your (Republican) package” legislation, see last post and remember how quickly dropped the burden of Democrat Rep. Weiner who’d been sexting about his “package” on-line while awaiting the birth of his firstborn, and then lied about it.



Now about how Parenting Coordination gets pushed through:

(It helps if one has a Supreme Court Judge also an AFCC member….)


Any cause with such beautiful pictures associated with it must be a good cause.  Anyhow, here’s the page of links:

FLAFCC will continue its role as convener to encourage multi-disciplinary collaboration in the development of Parenting Coordination throughout the state. The Chapter will post information as it arises to keep those interested abreast of the progress in this area. From time to time, the information posted will include requests for comment for you to consider.

Members click here for Parenting Coordination Ethical Guidelines

For more information, please contact Linda Fieldstone, PC Taskforce Coordinator, atLFieldstone@jud11.flcourts.org.


  • Section 2, Chapter 2009-180, Laws of Florida, formally establishes parenting coordination as a “child-focused alternative dispute resolution process.” Effective date of new legislation: October 1, 2009. Access legislation here (parenting coordination legislation begins on page 3).
  • The Family Law Rules Committee of The Florida Bar has petitioned the Florida Supreme Court to adopt a proposed “fast-track” rule of procedure and form in order to implement the new parenting coordination legislation. The Court has assigned the petition Case Number SC09-1822. The initial petition can be accessed here. To view other documents related to the petition, go here (scroll down to SC09-1822 and click on the desired document).


The FLAFCC Parenting Coordination Taskforce developed a Parenting Coordination Clearinghouse as a “One-Stop Shop” for all forms related to parenting coordination in those Judicial Circuits that have implemented parenting coordination in order to encourage collaboration among the parenting coordination programs throughout Florida. FLAFCC does not endorse any form or procedure included in this PC Clearinghouse and assumes no responsibility for the content of the downloadable materials in the Clearinghouse. It is the responsibility of each Florida Judicial Circuit/PC Clearinghouse participant to update any forms submitted to the Clearinghouse. To verify that the forms and information are accurate and current, FLAFCC recommends that interested individuals contact the Family Court Managers of their Judicial Circuits directly. FLAFCC continues to encourage the development of best practices in the utilization of parenting coordination in Florida.

Click here to enter the Clearinghouse.

From Chief Judge Barbara Parlente, reassuring us that Domestic Violence Advocates say Parenting Coordination (THIS version of the legislation) is OK:


TO:  Chief Judges

FR:  Chief Justice Barbara J. Pariente

WHEN   July 7, 2005

RE:  Use of Parenting Coordinators for High Conflict Cases

At the conclusion of the 2004 legislative session, Governor Jeb Bush vetoed a bill designed to provide guidance for the appointment and use of parenting coordinators to assist with high conflict dissolution cases where shared parenting schedules cannot be agreed upon by parents. This was due in part to concerns regarding the use of parenting coordinators when domestic violence is at issue in cases. In his veto message, he requested me to review the use of parenting coordinators to ensure that parents’ paramount rights are not compromised when this resource is accessed.

In response to the veto message, I created a workgroup to develop a model administrative order, a copy of which is attached. The administrative order was written by representatives from the following professions: judges, psychologists, certified mediators, domestic violence advocates and family lawyers. It has been reviewed by the Supreme Court Steering Committee on Families and Children in the Court, and they recommend that I send it to all chief judges. If your circuit presently uses parenting coordinators or is contemplating the use of them in the future, you are strongly urged to review this administrative order and adopt it to provide guidance to judges, family lawyers and parties who may benefit from the use of parenting coordinators.

OK, . . . . .   . . . . .

The word “high-conflict” means what?  Is there a legal meaning, outside the AFCC code-talk for “it wasn’t violent, it was just a dispute” and the habit of blaming BOTH parents without distinguishing when ONE parent might actually have something worth protesting — such as abuse, or habitual violation of court orders, etc.

This is reminiscent of (reminds me of) punishing an entire classroom for behavior of just a few….  And that’s probably a great connection, because the overall trend of this organization includes ongoing expansion and continually treating adults (ALL adults in a custody dispute) as if BOTH of them are parents.

Let me take that back — not quite BOTH parents when it comes down to actually writing the report (see handbook sample at PCANH.org — before they change it if they’ve yet noticed this post (which is why I posted segments)..  In that situation, the coaches are coached how to blame moms.   But in talking about them a little more of a public profile, it’s BOTH the parents that just can’t get along and thus have “high conflict.”

This might be a good place to remind us that the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce is clear on one thing:  among the lowest paid professions one can enter with an undergraduate degree in it is counseling-psychology ($29,000).  Petroleum-engineering:   $129,000.

“Counseling psychology was the only major for which bachelor’s-degree recipients had lower median earnings than high-school graduates. The report also considers, by major, the likelihood that a person will go on to earn a graduate degree, and how much, on average, that boosted their earnings. Seventy percent of those counseling-psychology majors go on to obtain a graduate degree, and it raises their earnings by 67 percent.

The report uncovered significant earnings differences by gender and race. Those differences were smaller in more-technical fields, Mr. Carnevale noted. Men outearn women in each group of majors, and nearly every individual major, in many cases significantly. For instance, men who majored in math earn a median of $75,000, while women earn a median of $54,000. Some of that can be explained by occupation, Mr. Carnevale said: Many of those women who major in math go on to be teachers. The only majors with which women earned more than men were visual and performing arts, physiology, and information sciences. (Some majors had sample sizes too small to analyze by gender.

The report also looks at earnings by race for groups by broad categories of majors. Whites outearned all the other groups in 10 of the 15 groups of majors, and tied with African Americans for the highest earnings in one category, education. Asians had the highest median earnings in the remaining groups of majors: biology and life sciences, health, law and public policy, and psychology and social work.

What’s it Worth?  The Economic Value of College Majors

I’ve noted recently how many Ph.D. psychiatrists and psychologists are leaders in AFCC, however, the definite emphasis of the association IS to incorporate psychologists.  It does not appear to me that the profession of lawyers alone needed  a lot of promotion, would you say?  This group pushes psychology, and has been very successful overall.  When this also branches out into sales and marketing (through the courts) the possibilities are endless, especially when it’s downloadable information (from a link to a pdf, or DVDs that can be drop-shipped while the author or expert is out running (and taping) the next set of seminars… Great business if you can get it.

Another review of this same Georgetown Study from The Root.com says:

The careers that paid the most for African Americans included computer networking and telecommunications ($54,000), architects ($55,000) and medical technologies technicians ($55,000).

What we found interesting was the disparity in pay between whites and blacks. For instance, while the average African-American architect makes $55,000, his white counterpart makes $65,000. While general engineering pays African Americans $60,000 per year, white Americans in that field average $76,000. African-American computer scientists earn $61,000, but white American computer scientists earn $80,000. Interesting

As for the disparity in pay in this so-called postracial society, perhaps the question should be, why is it that when blacksdo invest in education, they are paid less and more likely to be laid off than other groups?

Read more at Black Enterprise.

Well, perhaps the fact that a targeted clientele to keep in court-associated programs MAY play a factor also.  There is no question that many programs are definitely aimed at (and facilitated by) one or the other parent’s use of any Title IV-D funding, i.e., welfare.  This is partly where the marriage promotion funding lives, and works (that, plus the child support arena).

Anyhow ….

RE:  Chief Justice Barbara J. Pariente — that’s of the Florida Supreme Court:

Petite powerhouse Barbara Pariente is used to being in control. It’s evident from her stellar trajectory from federal law clerk to Florida Supreme Court justice in two dozen years.

The Pariente & Hazouri Family

She’s a fighter (and married to another judge) and refused to even let cancer keep her down:

The shocking diagnosis brought Pariente to her knees—but only temporarily. She fought back by doing what she does best: going into full analytical mode.

Anything but a passive patient, she kept a fat notebook of all her medical records, files of research, and ques tioned leading authorities on breast cancer, seeing at least 15 doctors in all.

“She attacked cancer with the same type of meticulous preparation she has used throughout her legal and judicial career,” said husband Fred Hazouri, a Fourth District Court of Appeal judge.

Sister of a psychotherapist, and a stepmother:

Susanne Pariente, a psychotherapist, says what she loves most about her older sister is “her love of family and her sense of humor. She is fun to be around, really down to earth, with this great energy. She makes you feel special.” . . .

Barbara Pariente’s family is a happy blend, with a son from her first marriage and a son and daughter from Hazouri’s first marriage.

At her swearing-in ceremony July 2, 27-year-old Joshua Pariente Koehler said, “It’s the priority that she places on personal relationships that really makes her so special.” Turning to his mother, he said: “Mom, you are the very best person that I know.”

And David Hazouri, a Miami lawyer, said: “Barbara is as genuine a person as I have ever met. I have never had to read her or wonder what she was really thinking. Her intentions are unflaggingly filled with the hope of success for those she cares for. In a family that is the product of two second marriages, this quality has made us more than simply functional; it has made us whole.”

(It’s a very wonderful, and long, biography here…)  Well let’s talk business here:

AFCC connections. Of course this is an AFCC judge I’d assume:

The Florida Chapter of the Association of Family, Court, and Community {{HUH?? another ‘AFCC spinoff?  or the reporter got the name mixed up?}} Professionals is teaming up with the Florida Supreme Court Family Court Steering Committee to lead a symposium in early November called Enhancing Collaboration to Better Serve Children and Families.”

The FLAFCC is a statewide chapter of the international

AFCC and is dedicated to the constructive resolution of family disputes. Members of ‘FLAFCC include attorneys, judges, teachers, CPAs, social workers, and doctrs — professionals involved with developing and refining techniques to assist families in resolving their disputes.

Keynote Speaker Florida Supreme Court Justice

Barbara Pariente will discuss collaborative law at the inaugural conference of the FLAFCC,** and the two-day event will feature sessions such as “Collaboration and Therapeutic Jurisprudence,” “Innovations in Court Practice/Family Court Steering Committee Program and Projects,” and “Collaborative and Cooperative Lawyering.” 

**AFCC hasnt been in Florida as long as in some other states.  See their nonprofit filings if you want to compare…

The FLAFCC board of directors includes President elect Sheldon Finman, an attorney in Ft. Myers; Vice President and 20th Judicial Circuit Court Judge. Hugh Sharnes; and board members 11th Judicial Circuit Court Judge Judith Kreeger, and Joe Hood, a member of The Florida Bar Family Law Section executive council.

At the conference, the FLAFCC will add several people to its board, including Sharon Press, director of the Dispute Resolution Center; First Judicial Circuit Court Judge Kenneth L. Williams; and Ronald Alvarez, a general master in the 15th Judicial Circuit.

The event will take place at the Tampa International Airport  on Friday, November 9, and Saturday, November 10. Registration for the full conference before October 2& is $135, or $155 after. For more information about the symposium visit http://www.flafcc.org, or contact FLAFCC Secretary LindaFieldstone at (305)349-5575 or lfieldstone@jud11.flcourts.org.

COPYRIGHT 2001 Florida Bar  {See Fair Use notice on blog, here….}
Well, I guess AFCC (national) Board of Directors, Presidents and President-Elects have to live somewhere, and Ms. Fieldstone just happens to live in Florida. From the main website:
President Elect 
Linda B. Fieldstone, M.Ed.Miami, FLLinda Fieldstone is Supervisor of Family Court Services of the 11th Judicial Circuit and a Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator, working with high-conflict families within the Miami-Dade County Domestic Relations Division as a parenting coordinator.  Ms. Fieldstone has provided numerous trainings regarding intervention with high-conflict families and parenting coordination, nationally and throughout Florida. She served on the AFCC Parenting Coordination Task Force to develop Guidelines for Parenting Coordination as well as on numerous taskgroups and Florida Supreme Court committees on the subject.  She is also a past president of the Florida Chapter of AFCC.

Degree — Educator.  Position — Supervises Family Court Services in 11th Distrit and is a mediator, AND a parenting coordinator….
If readers will kindly (and frequently!) review WHO the AFCC (national) boards of directors are, by profession, we see that there are some judges, some attorneys, some psychiatrists (notably Robin Deutch, Ph.D.) and some social workers, and some professional educators, such as Ms. Fieldstone & Ms. Midnick.
And it seems to me I already pointed out the Pruetts (dr. Marsha-Kline Pruett is obviously a woman, but no less fatherhood-centric than her husband Dr. Kyle Pruett at Yale Child Development Center.  Dr. Matt Sullivan runs a parenting coordinator business in California (when not doing reunification camp with other AFCC Board members on the East Coast):

Marsha Kline Pruett, Ph.D., M.S.L
Northampton, MA

Marsha Kline Pruett is a licensed clinical psychologist and the Maconda Brown O’Connor Professor at Smith College School for Social Work. She is researcher, mediator, and consultant to couples, attorneys, and judges. Dr. Kline Pruett has a national reputation for the development, implementation, and evaluation of preventive interventions in courts and family-focused community agencies. She has written extensively for academic and lay audiences, coauthoring Your Divorce Advisor (2001) and Partnership Parenting(2009). She is a member of the board of editors of the Family Court Review. She was awarded the AFCC Stanley Cohen Distinguished Research Award in 2004. The California Supporting Fatherhood Involvement (SFI) project is currently a major focus of her intervention and research efforts.

Matthew J. Sullivan, Ph.D.
Palo Alto, CA

Matthew Sullivan is a forensic family psychologist, practicing in Palo Alto, California. He received his undergraduate degree from Stanford University and his Doctor of Philosophy degree in clinical/community psychology from the University of Maryland. He is currently serving on the editorial board of the Journal of Child Custody. He has served on the AFCC Task Force on Parenting Coordination and the American Psychological and American Bar Association working group on legal and psychological interventions with children and families. He is currently the co-chair of the AFCC Court-Involved Therapist Task Force.

The CEO (President) of AFCC is an attorney, but with these professional emphases:

Robert M. Smith, JD
Windsor, CORobert Smith is an attorney and mediator with an emphasis on high-conflict family law cases, and regularly serves as a Child and Family Investigator, Child Legal Representative and Guardian ad Litem in judicial districts throughout Northern Colorado and the Denver Metro area. He received his Bachelor’s degree in English literature from Stanford University in 1961 and a Master of Divinity degree, with an emphasis in counseling, from San Francisco Theological Seminary in 1974. He earned his law degree from California Western School of Law in San Diego in 1995 and is licensed to practice law in Oregon and Colorado.

I would expect such an academic to be very literary :  English lit, 1961 (not much of a living in that except college professor?), M. Div/counseling 1974 (by this time AFCC was up and running, though possibly not under its current name) and JD in 1995.   A degree every 10 years or so, very impressive.  Somehow it’s less than assuring, however, that an organization with such influence is run  by an “M.Div.” although I’ve met some fine people who just got theirs….  He decides where kids do (or don’t) live, obviously, and whether or not they were (Well, I’ve read some colorado literature, from Dads, protesting that CF Investigator role).
We’d like to assure everyone that the Task Force on Parenting Coordination Guidelines was indeed “interdisciplinary” (though most likely ALL AFCC) (There IS no other group pushing parenting coordination, that I have found…..), and here they are:

The Task Force was reconstituted in 2003 by Hon. George Czutrin (NB:  ONTARIO, CANADA), AFCC President 2003-04. President Czutrin charged the Task Force with developing model standards of practice for parenting coordination for North America and named two Canadian members to the twelve-member task force. The Task Force continued investigating the use of the role in the United States and in Canada and drafted Model Standards for Parenting Coordination after much study, discussion and review of best practices in both the United States and Canada.

I don’t think it might have occurred to this judge that as a JUDGE (presumably) he was sworn to uphold the Constitution of (his local state) and not Canada?  And that as a JUDGe he is to file a disclosure of financial interests — I wonder if he has disclosed “AFCC”?

Pardon me — mea culpa — he IS Canadian.  Well, United States, Canada, Australia, Ireland, — what difference do national CONSTITUTIONS (or the US Bill of Rights, Declaration of Independence, etc.) make after all?  Surely we can through the courts completely coordinate our COUNTRIES as well.   All that’s necessary is to get the judges (and attorneys and of course psychologists and educators) together and lobby legislators and Governors to pass what we want passed, because after all this is Therapeutic Jurisprudence and we are all good people.  Yep…

The task force members are:

The members of the AFCC Task Force on Parenting Coordination (2003 – 2005) were: Christine A. Coates, M.Ed., J.D., Chairperson and Reporter; Linda Fieldstone, M.Ed., Secretary; Barbara Ann Bartlett, J.D., Robin M. Deutsch, Ph.D., Billie Lee Dunford-Jackson, J.D, Philip M. Epstein, Q.C. LSM, Barbara Fidler, Ph.D., C.Psych, Acc.FM. Jonathan Gould, Ph.D., Hon. William G. Jones, Joan Kelly, Ph.D., Matthew J. Sullivan, Ph.D., Robert N. Wistner, J.D.

I just underlined the only people who held JDs, excluding Christine Coates who has two degrees.
Judge appointing the task force (I do not know; googled) got a “bad” review in 1997 for actually validating sole custody to the mother, the Citizens Justice Review Panel complains about the ‘false allegations of sexual abuse.” …. (whatever….)
The main thing is to keep Pushing and Talking about Parenting Coordination, and then assure all involved that ethical guidelines will be adhered to, and write some.   Like here:
PARENTING COORDINATION CENTRAL (just seems to collate state by state progress)
Then advertised Trainings and Advanced Trainings (wonder if the expenses are deductible under professional continuing education yet…*.) such as:

Day One “Learning to Paddle Upstream:  Working with High-Conflict Impasse”

Day Two  “Navigating Alienation, Allegations and Ethical Dilemmas”**

During day two, participants learn to navigate the rapids associated with the impasses accompanying  Alienation & Other Allegations.  Alienation has and continues to be a source of controversy and concern for professionals in the field of divorce and family separation.  Participants will continue the dialogue and explore alienation within the context of attachment theory.  Professionals will be exposed to a broad yet comprehensive view of situations that arise that lead to children resisting contact with a parent.  Methods of identification and interventions suited to the work of a parenting coordinator will be highlighted.  Among these techniques, participants will explore alternative interventions including the use of alienation continuum, PA genograms and the use of an estrangement scale to document progress in the reunification process.

Notice they couldn’t actually “SAY” child sexual abuse or battery, kidnapping or death threats.   Notice how the Alienation is so real to the trainers, but the other (unnamed nouns) are all “Allegations.”   Well, “Alienation” is itself an allegation (and disproved psychological theory, but tell that to a psychologist!)

More to the point, these trainings are around $300 each.  That doesn’t count what it’s going to cost once Reunification is ordered; Lord help the couple that is going to get Warshak…  And yes, they are going to be (or already are) accepted in at least NASW:

Advanced Training Continuing Education Credits:

  • 12 CEUs
  • Approval Pending from NASW
  • Others Pending


Oregon Family Institute (which I have looked at often before, close connections to AFCC) has this banner:



Updated  1/20/11


Please look at the screen below to find listed PC’s we have trained  –

When there has been on-going high conflict that is not being resolved by mediation, evaluation or other methods, Parent Coordinators are often selected by the parents, but must be ordered by judges to provide PC services for the case.  The role of parent coordinator includes at least five functions:

  • Assessment
  • Education
  • Coordination and case management
  • Conflict Management
  • Decision-making when the parents can’t agree

 Parent Coordinators are often selected by agreement of the parents and their attorneys, but must be ordered by judges to provide PC services for the case.

Payment is made by the parents, or as ordered by the court (some jurisdictions have a way for low-income parents to receive this service paid by the court).  


Re:  the areas in red, the next steps (in this blog) will contain a little coaching in how to research the nonprofit status of any group that is seeking to function as a parenting coordination recipient of BUSINESS (parent-paid) sent it by courts (and that groups’ association with any existing judges).


Notice for low-income “a way can be found.”  This is a telltale indication that some county, state, or federal funding will be providing the payments. “By the court” means by a government entity — which the court IS.  The “Court” sometimes forgets (in fact, often forgets) who it owes its existence to — which is the willingness of the public at large to tolerate its help — or abuses — and continue working at tax-producing jobs to fund it.   Because there comes a time one cannot get blood out of a stone, and this time is coming pretty soon for the USA, based on our debt, and inflation, and instability of the $$.

I have found several nonprofits in the Florida area (in particular) with some very “odd” 990 filings — like NONE, or blank ones.  The membership, however, seems to see no problem with this and just goes out and forms another one.  One of these succeeded in crying about domestic violence to the right people, and got some more funding in 2011 to set up supervised visitation center (whether therapeutic or not, I didn’t check).  

THIS site is one way to look them up fairly quickly, and highly recommended.  not the purpose of OFI –which is to develop (more and more) PROGRAMS to help families, right?  Who are these going to benefit, long-term, and state by state?

this is a *.com site that may also help with lookups:   Type in “National Association of Parenting Coordinators” (and see if it has an EIN#) you’d be amazed how much pops up.  http://www.secstates.com



The one below, probably better, or you can simply figure it out in your state.




Written by Let's Get Honest|She Looks It Up

June 18, 2011 at 4:34 pm

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