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

'A Different Kind of Attention Develops Sound Judgment' | 'Suppose I'm Right Here?' (See March 23 & 5, 2014). More Than 745 posts and 45 pages of Public-Interest Investigative Blogging On These Matters Since 2009.

Belated Lessons from Baltimore’s and San Francisco’s CFCCs: How “Centers” Coordinating Planning and Advance PR with Private Trade Associations can Effectively Monopolize ANY Field of Practice and Bill the Public for both Startup, Capital Infrastructure, and Ongoing Operational Expenses. (Page Added 6/4/2017)


This page was created as a footnote to a post, and an example of a “genre” of private and public entities working to coordinate and centralize operations for control without informed consent, really, of the public, and bypassing the designated process for instituting major changes in government — which is supposed to be by way of the legislature not the administrative branches of top state-level entities AFTER the legislature repeatedly said “No” (as happened in the case of Baltimore).

[[I have occasion to reference this page on sociomedia, have updated/copyedited it some, incl. in next two paragraphs…  The original is less than three years old, I intend to preserve original intent and content but may clarify language or points of reference below.//LGH Jan. 2020.]]

Involvement of badly-behaving (i.e., corrupt/dishonest), private nonprofit trade associations who just happen to have focused their membership on people likely to be in influential public offices, such as judgeships, or training/mentoring young (or at least, up and coming) lawyers how to think and act similarly, to the extent they do — as they do — is outside the form of government and federal/state constitutions citizens have subscribed to and are paying for, it is non-representative, because uninformed, NOT by consent, and as a whole, seeks to undermine and (I often say “bypass”) the normal forms of government on the premises we are not competent and should not be allowed to govern ourselves  (speaking:  USA primarily).

To the extent such trade associations (taking advantage of tax-exemption privilege, which also helps camouflage (at will) the extent of private influence through layers of donations and convoluted money trails, also seek to import foreign standards of government and embed them within the USA system, that’s beyond “corrupt.”  It’s a serious betrayal. Someone’s allegiance is in the wrong geography to the extent this is organized as a national campaign on the US family courts and judicial system. [End, Jan. 2020 update for this part]]

But it’s still a good point of reference for the main topics of this blog.


Page Title: Belated Lessons from Baltimore’s and San Francisco’s CFCCs: How “Centers” Coordinating Planning and Advance PR with Private Trade Associations can Effectively Monopolize ANY Field of Practice and Stick the Public for both Long-term Debt on Capital Infrastructure, and Ongoing Operational Expenses, for Ongoing Profit to the Providers and Advisors. (Page Added 6/4/2017(Page title with case-sensitive short-link ending “-6XR”, as published and still under 2,500 3,000 words).


(I had to work the word “lessons” in there as a take off on the overuse of “Early Lessons from  Project We Promise You, It’s a Great Idea!“) but in fact I learned this in hindsight, so for me, and I think most people, it’s “Belated Lessons.”


[UPDATE insert/example of where else you might hear of “Early Lessons” in social services policymaking]: [(cf. OCSE Responsible Fatherhood: Early Implementation Lessons, (face page) found at Fatherhood.gov, its copy however from “ERIC.ED.gov” (119pg pdf).I started annotating this pdf immediately on seeing it (Jan. 2020). The face page for this document on ‘Fatherhood.gov’ (a.k.a “National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse) fails to mention it was sponsored by both the US HHS OCSE (Child Support Enforcement Office) and in part by the Ford Foundation — a long-term fathers’ rights supporter of both programs and professionals.   Also, the face page for this document on ‘Fatherhood.gov’ only lists two of four authors (Jessica Pearson and Nancy Thoennes) omitting David Price and Jane Venohr) and neglects to mention the name of both their respective organizations (at the time, possibly still) overlapping (Denver) organizations:  Center for Policy Research, Inc. , a non-profit formed about 1980, and Policy Studies, Inc. (a for-profit)?

(The face page though short still has three typos, including mis-spelling the name of one of the only two authors  shown and the word “abstract”).

Following: an 8-image gallery (starting with the face page, then Document Resume, cover pages, and excerpts from some of the “Early Lessons” revealing extra purposes of the OCSE include helping fathers modify their custody orders (parenting time, under “access and visitation” federally-supported programming), child support arrears, child support payments and even time incarcerated if they only participate in these social science behavioral modification tests (8 project sites)…. even though recruitment was noted as tough, the efforts continued (and are now well into about the third decade, STILL federally funded as before….)  I believe my annotations are also on the pdf I provided above..//LGH Jan. 13, 2020 page update…

Jane Venohr (see image #2, or page 1 (Document Resume) of the pdf) is at CPR (last I looked) and was also at Policy Studies, Inc.

Naturally it’s not going to mention ALSO that Jessica Pearson is an “AFCC original” (or just about — since at least 1983, per an AFCC newsletter of about that date) and, I heard from a credible source (NAFCJ.net) also of the politically active and in this context HIGHLY relevant, “Children’s Rights Council” (website CRCkids.org), along with David L. Levy, Esq. (deceased not too long ago, but instrumental in pushing for access and visitation programs at the Congressional level, before, during and after USA’s Welfare Reform).  Currently (since when, DNR offhand), Jessica Pearson and (I DNR whether Thoennes or Venohr), in their capacity as leaders of Center for Policy Research, Inc. in Denver (i.e., institutional (nonprofit) producer of this Year 2000 report) are active in Pennsylvania through another HHS-funded operation, titled (but no, it does not seem to be its own nonprofit entity) the “FRPN.org” (Fathers Research and Practice Network,) something I’ve posted on also.

How many more indications are needed that helping MEN, specifically (i.e., fathers) with their family court cases to gain more parenting time and facilitate reduction of child support payments, child support arrears, and at times incarceration times (for other causes) with participation in responsible fatherhood and job search programs?  And that, generally, this works better when women are kept in the dark about it, for which we may “thank” many feminist organizations, DV advocacy groups, Child Abuse Prevention groups, Protective Mothers advocates (so-called) and many of these continuing to file amicus briefs, prod professionals in other countries along their own proposed solutions (which utterly refuse to deal with the existence of this situation, long-term in the USA), seek to get new laws passed about better protection against domestic violence IN the family courts, and collaborate with international agencies like WHO and the ICD (International Classification of Disease//see the page this one links back to at the bottom, it’s a sticky post), Argue against validating PAS in custody hearings (as a negative), (failing to note that AFCC has been arguing the “Pro” side for decades) and wondering aloud (Joan Meier of DVLEAP, 2003 publication), in effect “what gives?  Why are judges resisting keeping kids safe from abusers in custody decision-making..”

‘OCSE RespFatherhd Programs |Early Implementatn Lessons’ by J Pearson, N Thoennes, DavidPrice, JaneVenohr [CPR+PSI of Denver) w help from FordFndtn NY (1997 funding 2000 publ) it says 119pp (I’m printing 2020Jan13)

If you read far enough in my comments, one of them points out that lead author (Jessica Pearson) was known also to be an AFCC activist, was a co-founder or on early board of Children’s Rights Council (admitted activist fathers’ rights organization ESPECIALLY when it comes to “access and visitation,” which political clout was exercised in D.C. area and with imminent (early 1990s) “welfare reform” movements pushing fatherhood and fathers’ rights as a policy issue which did indeed then become embedded into that welfare reform of 1996 (“PRWORA”).  Anyhow…//LGH.


(Returning to my text from 2017…)

For those who chose to continue not noticing after some of us started exposing this, it’s even more “belated.”

I am now explaining a different kind of trade association, project, asset infrastructure, of obviously international scope and intentions.  Global.  Like the CFCCs, the one I’m referring to often works out of university centers, with trade associations, and with government itself.

I hope that by looking at a different subject matter topic, but similar planning, public relations (“PR”) and collaboration process (including “by-invitation only” roundtables and a bit of shape-shifting, rebranding of the private trade associations, and their conferences, and their certification processes) taking place in THIS century (a lot of what I’m talking about below dates back to the mid-to-late 1900s; at least back to 1975 in some cases), people will start to admit this is a pattern of privatization for the purpose of profits and population control.

Sometimes you have to look at something else to understand what, exactly, you were looking at (dealing with) in the first place.  For the purposes of the School Facilities Planning and Education Transformation fields, this would be “something else” because it goes back to the family courts as reigning paradigm (and all that goes with them, including pushing “UNIFIED family courts” and parallel, when it comes to Domestic Violence Prevention and Services (per the VAWA act), that is to also be “Coordinated Community Response.”

However it’s good information and specific dates, names, and entities (or, non-entities, like these two CFCC “Centers” in Baltimore at a School of Law, and in San Francisco, at the California Judicial Council (AOC — Administrative Office of the Courts, which is the “Staff” to the Judicial Council of California, highest ruling body of the state’s courts)).

(Updated clarifications on why I mentioned “non-entities“: The State of California is a governmental entity and must file its “Comprehensive Annual Financial Report” for the public.  The AOC within it is staff, not an “entity” nor is the CFCC under the AOC an “entity” any more than, say, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) under the Department of HHS (or, the Department of HHS itself) is a governmental entity.  However the US Government itself IS an entity and files CAFRs annually.

When “non-entities” within other entities (business or government) seem to be running things, the logical associated question is, where are their books and how can the (funding) public — when it’s impacting public services and “we, the people” — see them, to ensure they are bribe-free and not facilitating corrupt (undue) influence on something VITAL to our freedom:  our courts; our justice systems…) //LGH Jan 13, 2020.


So, speaking of ….”How Centers Coordinating Planning and Advance PR with Private Trade Associations can Effectively Monopolize ANY Fields of Practice…” let’s review what I already blogged.  In doing this, I found (below) that one person referenced only in passing is as we speak (well, 2017) being or just was confirmed as a Connecticut Superior Court Judge over objections of those who complained about his record as a GAL and AFCC connections…


You can see this system-wide in the healthy marriage/responsible fatherhood field, which then merged into the already expansive “child protection” (welfare/dependency courts), as certain groups repeatedly pushed through consolidation of jurisdiction to handle ALL subject matters in single courts which they set up and controlled, and from which some of their colleagues and friends would, naturally, get spinoff businesses.  I’m thinking in particular of a high-conflict court in Middletown Connecticut spearheaded by AFCC professionals, not to mention the “unified family court” concept being promoted throughout the Sayra and Neill Meyerhoff (name changed after it started to acknowledge major donors) “Center for Families and Children in the Courts” (CFCC) at UBaltimore School of Law.  The consolidation there was of training and mentoring of family lawyers, presiding judges and affiliated professionals (who run: batterers’ intervention, supervised visitation, mediation, etc.) as heavily represented particularly by the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC), a private** “trade” association, that is, tax-exempt corporation.   [**a non-profit based in Illinois (though it falsely claims Wisconsin legal domicile on its posted tax returns.  It has some chapters, but not one in every state; and one in Canada also. Its annual conferences are not always within the USA. It maintains close ties also with England and other Commonwealth countries for alignment of “best practices”]

I have already posted on this a few years ago, and over the years.

From what I can tell, the individual/s instrumental in persuading a well-known (deservedly) Chief Administrative judge in Maryland to issue an administrative order to set up the family court division — where it had not been passing the legislature for a number of years — as late as 1998, was connected to the later CFCC at UBaltimore School of Law, who has by now been more “out” in acknowledging the AFCC (private professional trade association) roots shown earlier mostly on (her) C.V. only.

[To illustrate this] I’m picking miscellaneous screenprints from April 21, 2017, but I’d reported more extensively on this back (as I recall) in late 2013. See Table of Contents Page.

{{2019, August 3, Update: SEE BELOW NEXT IMAGES: for an inset box with links to three posts from Dec. 2013, as I referenced them on the top sticky post of this blog (which is simply listing a directory of all published pages — with an opening review).  I still think what took place in this state during the 1990s, and how it was coordinated, is a major key to understanding what family courts are about in the first place — and from there, a place to stand in assessing why there’s so much protest about them, ongoing, almost ever since, to the point of making a stream of headlines, and some individual journalists having made a personal name (it seems) out of following and publicizing disaster cases originating in the family court system, nationwide, USA at minimum.}}

Image 1 of 3 (UBaltimore School of Law S&M Meyerhoff CFCC Spring 2017 Full Court Press) email alert

#1 of 3 from my Dec 22, 2013 post referencing UBaltimore School of Law CFCC in re creation of the family law division (late 1990s) in Maryland — through an administrative judicial ruling

Image 2 of 3 (see caption for image 1)

UCBaltimore SOLaw Home page; having clicked on “CFCC” option, the donors name in such large letters, important parts of the page aren’t even visible on the top half (scroll down to see now more overt connections between CFCC founder and AFCC-affiliated (co-published) Family Court Review, of which this Associate Professor is now Editor in Chief. And, newsletters, and recommendations for a new post-JD certificate in family law, etc.

UCBaltimore SOLaw Home page showing drop-down menu for “Centers” in very fine print) Click for full-sized.

Meanwhile, back in California, the “CFCC” designation arose under the Administrative Office of the Courts, itself a centralized operations.  California began moving control of the judicial system AND the courts, AND the courthouses AND their employees to a statewide presiding council (the council had been around a long time, but the other factors are more recent) in the 1990s.  A statewide “Family Court Services” was combined with another office labeled after children, and about the same time on BOTH east (Baltimore, Maryland) and west coasts (San Francisco), the “CFCC” label showed up.

Looking for my post on the Middletown Connecticut “high-conflict court” created by (?) a December 2009 administrative ruling, I’m reminded that as far back as 2012 I was posting this on TWO different blogs.  (See table of contents — or archives — around that time).

{{This thought continued below the 2019 inset listing three relatd posts from three-and-a-half years before this June 2017 page}}}


2019 INSET SIMPLY NAMES THE RELATED POSTS WITH SOME DESCRIPTIVE TEXT…

Also recommended (From Dec., 2013), in this order:

Continuing the original page’s text (first published June 4, 2017)….


The situation in Connecticut at the time was also receiving detailed coverage by investigative journalist Anne Stevenson, (work referenced on my sidebar) living geographically closer to the region at the time, while I was out here tracking down the AFCC chapters, only to find the one in Connecticut had just barely incorporated. (It’d been doing business in the state improperly for decades, apparently, right out of the state judiciary..)

During these years, some of us “noncustodial mothers” dealing with the repeated trauma of family court rulings AFTER reporting abuse of ourselves or children, were blogging and communicating more closely.  However, where I drew the line was the refusal to fully incorporate reporting on the magnitude of the federal incentives (“family formation” welfare diversions) and how this facilitated money-laundering through the nonprofits set up to catch the overflow, AND to account for the Battered Mothers’ Custody Conference refusal to deal with this for at least a decade of conferences.  This refusal had to do with incorporating leading domestic violence professionals into the planning process early on (the DV Advocacy groups participated in the HMRF funding coverup, which is in my opinion, unconscionable).  BMCC started conferencing in 2003, it says. I was fighting also on the west coast for reporting on this among regular presenters from California at the then NY-based conference (it seems to have moved closer to the nation’s capital for its conferences in recent years — 2013ff).

a March 1, 2012 post from my other blog (later abandoned as a hard to manage platform) “Family Court Franchise”

Next paragraph is from that post, to set up a second screenprint (again, the context is Connecticut’s High-Conflict Court and seeing

(Click image if needed to see better). The point here is not the person, but the associations (memberships) commissions, and Governmental appointments, an “Academy,” etc. of which several have in common, AFCC members.

coordinated networks of control in that state):

Here is a Hartford attorney, Barry Armata, boasting about his affiliations, which are the usual string of involvements of family attorneys on the AFCC (the success) track.  Note towards the bottom, he cites having served with Judge Lynda Munro.  Just for the effect, notice the phrasings of Collaborative, Family, Commissions, child advocacy, training, etc. etc.  I should fill out playing cards, like scrabble and make a game for these professionals to play with each other.  Different associations should be weighted differently, for example, the highest score would be Presiding Judge of any Unified Family Court.

Wow.  I didn’t remember the name “Barry Armata” from anywhere, just the blog post I was quoting above, as part of illustrating the AFCC influence there, in Baltimore Maryland, and of course, California (not to mention elsewhere).  Simply searching the name, I saw “CT Mirror” on-line article about those protesting his judicial nomination now in 2017 on the basis of his “fees for friends” and high fees as a court-appointed guardian of a minor child (the GAL route leading to judicial confirmation was under discussion five years ago, but regarding the Hon. (She was appointed) Maureen Murphy, referenced in my second screenprint above.  The CT Mirror also reported on this.

In the next link / quote, you’ll see several references to AFCC.  A lot of this has to do with Anne Stevenson having gotten some attention to this problem as published in Huffington Post and (what later became) ComDigNews (spun off from the Washington Times).  Many scribds were posted, many invoices reviewed.  Too bad the focus was primarily on one association, and not the networks of associations, commissions, task forces, etc. involved AND as connected to the federal grants (“The Whole Nine Yards…”).

I brought it up by posting, several times, five years ago, in support of this movement.  Since then, I have continued the macro-focus and protested giving the impression that uncovering ONE major entity and continuing the impression that the family courts can somehow continue, but just in a “cleaned-up” format, somehow.  The issue is MUCH larger, and has to do with an entire category of organizations networked WITH EACH OTHER to maintain control of whichever public institutions may be targeted at the time.  When memberships obtain positions of authority in individual states (as definitely happens), they do call in their friends.  It’s a “fees for friends” situation.  The friends coordinate more through their associations and conferences than directly with the public, it seems.  The public can figure out who’s who if they’re persistent, motivated, and can gain access to the information, each time, before modes, or corporation names are shifted.

Here’s the article I just found, I put the last paragraph first for identification:

A rare cliffhanger in the House over a judicial nomination (CT Mirror, by Mike Pazniokas, published just May 30, 2017)

Armata, a partner at Brown, Paindiris & Scott in Hartford, is a graduate of Boston College** and Syracuse University College of Law. He was one of 13 lawyers nominated last month by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to the Superior Court, where one in every five of the 185 positions are vacant.

Rare Cliffhangers in House (CT) over Barry Armata posted May30 2017 in CT Mirror by Mark Pzaniokas references AFCC (Screen Shot 2017-06-02 at 3.32PM)” Click image to enlarge, pls. read the rest of the article too.

 

**Boston College is Jesuit, which is the largest male-only Order in the Catholic Church, a community of scholars and intellectuals, no doubt, multi-cultural and favoring diversity (as often located in the center of metropolitan areas), no doubt — but when it comes to matters of divorce, custody, visitation, child support, and the role of men as leaders of families (not just churches), and the role of how much abuse women should tolerate for the cause of marriage, or co-parenting after abuse — yes, this matters.  AFCC also has notable connections as “partners” with Jesuit Universities in major metropolitan areas, running dispute resolution centers, etc. (Marquette [Milwaukee], Creighton [Omaha], and in SF Bay Area, University of San Francisco, Santa Clara University (within a short driving and within the nine Bay Area counties).


[[END of page with one insert and minor format changes (I enlarged most images also]].  See top sticky post on this blog (“58 Essays (PAGES) on Family Court Essentials** .. spanning 2009-2019)  (shortlink ends “-ar9”) for further references to this situation, featured on its introduction (above the list of titles)]]

Written by Let's Get Honest

June 4, 2017 at 5:33 pm

%d bloggers like this: