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.

Posts Tagged ‘family law

Join or Start a Conversation on Family Court Matters. Jump in Somewhere!

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[Looks like this one started around May 16, 2013; it was then left “pending” for a long while, and now being re-published along with original comments on November 16, 2013 (after some days of adding too much, then splitting off the added insight from later months after all). I apologize for the inconvenience and for not having figured out what the Contact Form was earlier in the blog!

Believe it or not, I do want feedback.  Comments have always been open, and some of my ongoing network comes from people who commented; we are continuing to compare practices across jurisdictions and problemsolve, support, etc.  

The “contact” form here raises general topics and asks for feedback for any post (or link) on the entire blog. Don’t miss the “drop-down” menu on one of the fields below.  I have participated in “forums” before, but they are time-intensive and not usually set up for problem-solving.  I’m looking for people who perceive issues, can state them, and want to do something about it.  

Usually this is people who are already stuck in, or have been devastated by (current or past) the courts.  Of those people, who else is ready to frame the discussion and can actually handle the existence and relevance of the material I blog?

If disagree — what’s the basis?  If agree…..

I’m looking for better ways to organize and communicate the material, as well as better understanding of what does, or doesn’t communicate to people IN custody situations.   I have a lot of personal feedback through networking, and from some people who took time to comment and I can tell from other groups who formerly resisted talking about some of these essentials who now, have had to — because their followers also read this blog. Word is getting out.

I can show which direction human beings are driving this entire system (the Titanic ship of state, including the courts) based in a common language of economics and evolving corporate structures. Whether or not that’s a good or desired direction, matters.   Wouldn’t this knowledge be helpful for whether to start “fixing the broken courts” (tinkering with their settings) or dismantling them for other, different options?

In 2016 this blog (and my life) are at different states of awareness, and urgency. A significant 2016 insert follows because I’m going to either make this post “sticky” or re-post it, showing that three years ago, I was responding to the symptoms of what can now be better documented and defined — in part because I found documentation in the course of continuing to read, and in part because in the past three years, the means to continue changing the public perception of what “Paradigms” ought to reflect government itself, continue their expansive momentum, and showing more of their true character.


But First, As usual, “In My Opinion.”   Please argue it if you disagree, or state your own elsewhere, including in the contact form!  Bulleted commentary on, essentially, the conference circuit and its publications, may be helpful insight.

In my opinion, some of those who set this up maybe foresaw this day and have carved out other professional niches involving fewer judges, called “collaborative Justice.”

In other words, perhaps planning was made for the eventuality that the public catches on…. and shuts it down by simply refusing to feed the system, particularly as more of (us) start exposing how the system is actually fed, the funding… Read the rest of this entry »

So, Who wrote the PBI-published Guide to Pennsylvania’s “New Child Custody Act”?

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Continued from my last post on, well, the publishing arm of the Pennsylvania Bar Association, and several topics. Part of being (who I am) is the tendency to Look Things Up. So, I started looking up those attorneys who helped explain the new custody law in Pennsylvania.

This 7,000 word post has a very detailed chart at the bottom (hard to produce, as to html) and has soaked up too much of my time (I am still typing in “html” compose mode, visually). I then probably made it a little worse by introductory prose paragraphs. BUT, I still maintain that it’s valuable information to consider — these points are not raised enough among parents. Feedback solicited (comments). One way to understand the post may be to FIRST scroll down to some of the charts (for a visual) then go back and read the explanations.

On the other hand, I don’t owe anyone anything on this matter. I did my own lookups, networking, collaboration, and beyond that — whatever gets posted is public service announcement. It’s not addressed to people who are comfortable with groupthink (on the courts), uninvolved or unconcerned about the significance of dysfunctional (etc.) courts on the country, or the presence about money-laundering possibilites that each such setup presents, or the undermining of representative government in favor of the therapeutic, over-diagnosing, medicating, institutionalizing, iatrogenic “Nanny State,” and not a very nice nanny, either.

Iatrogenic (from “Wikipedia” definition):

The term iatrogenesis means brought forth by a healer from the Greek ἰατρός (iatros, “healer”) and γένεσις (genesis, “origin”); as such, in its earlier forms, it could refer to good or bad effects. . . .The transfer of pathogens from the autopsy room to maternity patients, leading to shocking historical mortality rates of puerperal fever (a k a “childbed fever”) at maternity institutions in the 19th century, was a major iatrogenic catastrophe of that time. The infection mechanism was first identified by Ignaz Semmelweis.[2]

OK…

So, yes, Pennsylvania had a Custody Law Revamp passed in 2011

.

Jan. 2011 article (fairly substantial) in the Legal Intelligencer on the new custody law.
(more on how it happened, at bottom of this post). This post looks at a PBI release with many attorney authors (plus a single Judge, and some AFCC Psychologists, i.e., Arnold & Kasey Shienvold, Ph.D.’s) on the impact of the new custody law. See article for some issues it raises.


In fact, at the bottom of this post — something you probably won’t find anywhere else on the Internet — is a chart of the authors, with columns for “how AFCC ARE they?” and basic descriptors. While AFCC is hardly “The Skull & Bones” of Yale, it still is an association which many more judges and attorneys have adopted the mindset of, or may even be members of, without saying so on their website. In other words, its influences are felt – they are real — but not always mentioned directly.

While I did (or started) this for Pennsylvania — it really could and should be done for EVERY state as an ignorance-reducing movement for people who like to complain about judges, the courts, evaluators, GALs, etc. It has not been done (yet) for the primary reasons, as far as I can tell, is limited resources (i.e., you’re looking at a volunteer blogger, and family court veteran, which generally means, SOMETHING was stripped violently and suddenly (but in a process that still somehow manages to last for YEARS) out of one’s life — whether children, or assets // income, social support networks, or all of the above. So the people that are most motivated to report (or should be), are often least financially positioned to. (I’m working on it!).

And those who have funding, as nonprofits themselves, associating with other nonprofits for clout (just like AFCC does) and press, and a “day in the sun” — are less than motivated to examine the function of Nonprofits (per se) as a topic relevant to the family courts AT ALL. They too, would rather form coalitions and self-selecting groupings to run conferences, publish, attract followers, and proclaim theories.

RELEVANCE of answering the “How AFCC ARE they?“: Membership in AFCC, or agreement with and repeated references to its standards are throughout the family law system — yet the organization has been at many levels functioning as a monopoly (while private in association, conferencing, funding, etc.) trade association among my PUBLIC employees. It has a definite mindset towards matters which tend to bring custody cases to the courts to start with — domestic violence and child abuse, in particular. Or, co-parenting when there has been DV or CA. And yet the organization — for all its own self-promotion, dramatic conferences with flashy brochures — is under-reported in the MSM press, and is scarcely mentioned !!! by advocates involved in the stopping domestic violence and child abuse industry.

As such, few people have even ruffled their feathers, or disturbed the seas on which they operate, let alone questioned the practices AS an organization. VERY few, although definitely some have. And yet this organization — and the others that work under, or with it (much of my blog names and describes them, specifically) — is able to operate with more influence and less accountability by virtue of it being “under the radar” of people who need to know MOST about it — which is 1. parents, and 2. all taxpayers.
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Technical Assistance and Training = Silencing Mothers’ Voices, Taking their Money…

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[post is about 11,000 words long.
I am showing many TA&T [Technical Assistance and Training] programs and their relationships, although my interest in Battered Women’s Justice Project (BWJP) stems from their recent collaborations with (instead of confrontation of) “AFCC” and drawing upon public funding (HHS grants) to do their analyses.  It’s pretty obvious that the organizations writing up the projects/situation/subject matter are not going to BE the subject matter — and if so, it will be self-description.
My takeaway is, the better way to describe “the situation” is corporate economic viewpoint.   I use corporate lookups, tax return lookups, sometimes grants lookups to describe (and compare to) any organization’s self-description on its colorful, hyperlinked, “Donate Here” websites.  
I also  try to remember which nonprofits have spun off earlier ones that made a name and got the grants.
In that regard, Technical Assistance =  Propaganda Promotion, even if the topic they are writing about is or was indeed legitimate; to dominate the field by the internet, conferences, training, federal funding, and nonprofit status — is to exclude the clientele’s voices as an equally relevant viewpoint.
It should be remembered that several of these organizations got their start in the 1980s, before (really) the Internet Revolution got underway.  However now that it is, business just got easier, and for individual victims of (for example) battering or abusive control — who are often fighting for sheer access to an internet (i.e., isolation is a factor in controlling others) — to expect to keep up with the rapid expansion of certain viewpoints (which are good for sales, if not necessarily good for actually stopping violence against women, or promoting responsible fatherhood EITHER) — is, well unreal.
The only way to even the playing field (being outnumbered and out financed, and less well organized) is to, I hope others also will, EXPOSE the circumstances, and then demand that certain programs be DEFUNDED (they are not reducing “roadkill” they are simply spawning more proselytes and building professional conferencer-careers) –and the organizations pay their own way through life.
When it comes to ECONOMIC control, the United States (obviously) has collective wealth beyond individuals — but I suggest addressing this issue sooner rather than later, anyhow.  TAKE A LOOK!  No matter where one digs in, similar behaviors will prevail; this is as good an entry point as any….]

SOCIAL CHANGE TO END VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN:  

HOME OF THE DULUTH, MODEL

This website has changed, and no longer openly lists certain projects that are underneath it (an older version may be on my blog)…  Which I seem to recall included groups like PRAXIS International:  “integrating theory & practice,” which like DAIP, had close ties to Ellen Pence (who actually was Praxis “founding director.”  Their home page still holds a eulogy, as Ellen Pence died recently:

Praxis believes in social change through advocacy & training “since 1996”.

  •  “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.

Like others, they endorsed the “SUPERVISED VISITATION & EXCHANGE” (USDOJ Safe-Havens grant series support):

 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.

Interesting year — startup year coincided with welfare reform…  Like OH SO MANY helpful nonprofit groups getting significant HHS and/or DOJ grants (although I DNR what Praxis got) — they are really “into” technical assistance and training” and quite willing to help grantees — from a safe distance from ongoing, shall we say, volatile, situations at the street level.  Maybe the founders had this experience initially but after all, people age out, and it’s safer to teach than to confront in a group setting — or dispense studies on-line.

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Summarizing Faith-Based, Marriage-Promoting, Change-Agents and Slush Funds…

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CROOKS.

Your Money, Their Tax Exemption,

Your Kids Gone (or Abused) courtesy

Your Government.  Your President(s) Promoting it, Too,

Clinton, Bush, Obama, ….???

Name me one that didn’t promote faith, marriage and fatherhood.

Or have a background involving some real estate deals pre-Presidency.

I’ve been looking (too long, probably) at what these organizations do, how they behave, and what the pattern is.  Unilaterally, it’s sickening (i.e., it’s corrupt).  I believe that collectively this is the “air we breathe” and that it gets back to the money system — a dual class cartel being created and expanded, where those closest to the “Court” may save or prosper their own asses — but it will be at the expense of ethics, truth, and others.  This will lead to more bloodshed, as some are going to resist by non-economic means.

All of this may sound complex (particularly as I don’t present it visually in the best manner — I’d be better in a Q&A, or live; and don’t have graphics skills).  But as to concepts, it isn’t.  If you can think conceptually (and surviving depends on more of it these days) — you can understand these concepts.  The thing is, most people’s lives don’t require analyzing so much of their government from top to bottom, while not being IN it or ON it.  Those of us who got so marginalized and don’t like fake answers (hard truths are OK, “Placebo” truths are not) — have been doing so.

THINGS FLOW:  Electricity, water, air (lava, sometimes), sap, blood, lymph (with help), sewage, OK, MILK, semen, right?– and money.

AND – information / IDEAS — in the form of words, sounds, images, smells — almost anything that involves one of the five senses.  This is your:  face to face, and technology over the decades:  Paper (Gutenberg), Radio, Telegraph, and now, The Internet — Social Media — the web.  . .  . . Etc.

(Some — many — also assert that spirit exists, and as such, it’s been compared to:  wind, fire, and water. (“Earth, Wind and Fire?”)

THINGS FLOW — and they flow GEOGRAPHICALLy and CHRONOLOGICALLY.  MONEY FLOWS.   

In a sense, property ownership ALSO “flows” — from one owner to another.

THINGS FLOW — and when they do, there are conduits, surfaces, or carriers (irrigation systems, etc.) through which they flow.  Or seep.  Or, are transmitted.

Extended illustration that WHAT flows, matters.  Maybe some things shouldn’t be:

As they flow, and over time, they sometimes are themselves transformed (water) or transform (give life — or death) to — other things.  Right now in Pennsylvania, there’s the issue of SHALE (“fracking”) which forcibly injects a mixture of liquids (carrying pollutants) to get the desired oil out, I guess.   (see link) Here’s a description which proves that, if you flush something out that wasn’t meant to be flushed — there is a resulting flow of crap, which has to be hauled away.  I seems that presently the Governor of PA (Corbett) is appealing municipalities protests of an unconstitutional (and so ruled, by the Supreme Court of PA) restriction on local municipalities to protest zoning that would — enable this fracking, I think.  What did the GOV do?  Well, the apparatus was already set — there were states’ attorneys, and a (centralized development agency), the OECD, over which he appointed a crony (“walker”) (or, at least donor to his campaign, and with a financial interests in defeating this Ruled-Unconstitutional act.  Power at work…).

Now, what to do with it?  This is about FLOW and just an illustration.  A large one, of course:

Flowback and Brine Treatment in Pennsylvania

Someone may try to convince you that using 6-million gallons of water for fracing one gas well doesn’t amount to a massive amount of water. Even if they are successful in making that argument, the next topic becomes flowback or brineWhat do you do with the crap that comes back out of the ground?

Gas drilling wastewater receives no treatment to remove frac fluids or chlorides, only dilution with treated sewage from this McKeesport Municipal Authority.
The Municipal Authority of McKeesport accepts 80,000 gallons per day, which is then mixed with treated sewage and dumped into the Monongahela River upstream from Pittsburgh. Hawg Hauling is part of Chesapeake Energy.

Somewhere between 20% and 40% of the water used for hydro-fracing a gas well returns to the surface as flowback, and later as produced water. In addition to the frac fluids added by the gas drilling companies, this water picks up other contaminants from deep in the Earth (~ 7,000 feet deep) with one of the most notable ingredients being salt.

Let’s talk about what’s in it: (from same site — just browse…)

These fluids contain sodium and calcium salts, barium, oil, strontium, iron, numerous heavy metals, soap, radiation and other components. This fluid combination becomes brine wastewater, and tanker trucks hauling it are labeled with RESIDUAL WASTE placard. Treated brine is also sold for deicing and other applications that utilize calcium chloride, often being applied to roadways.

RESIDUAL WASTE placard

((FRom A DIFFERENT SOURCE, same forum though, posted Mon July 9, 2012 11:09pm Link provided there was broken..):

“These first four categories represent effects that would likely be expressed upon immediate exposure, such as eye and skin irritation, nausea and/or vomiting, asthma, coughing, sore throat, flu-like symptoms, tingling, dizziness, headaches,weakness, fainting, numbness in extremities, and convulsions…”…”Health categories that reflect chronic and long-term organ and system damage comprise the middle portion of Figure 2.

These include the nervous system (52%), immune system (40%), kidney (40%), and the cardiovascular system and blood (46%). More than 25% of the chemicals can cause cancer and mutations. Notably, 37% of the chemicals can affect the endocrine system that encompasses multiple organ systems including those critical for normal reproduction and development. The category of other is more common, and includes effects on weight, teeth, and bone and the ability of a chemical to cause death. More than 40% of the chemicals have been found to have ecological effects, indicating that they can harm aquatic

Brine wastewater is difficult and expensive to treat, one of the same reasons we aren’t using much ocean water for agriculture and residential applications. The saltiness of this wastewater creates high levels of TDS (total dissoved solids). Incomplete processing of this brine wastewater, especially when dumped into rivers used for drinking water, creates a high TDS situation that causes drinking water treatment plants problems, likeTrihalomethanes. High TDS water reacts with chlorine when it is processed creating these TTHM’s.

about which, per the EPA

Trihalomethanes (THM) are a group of four chemicals that are formed (along with other disinfection byproducts) when chlorine or other disinfectants used to control microbial contaminants in drinking water react with naturally occurring organic and inorganic matter in water. The trihalomethanes are chloroform, bromodi/chloromethane, dibromo/chloromethane, and bromoform (I inserted the “/”s)

That’s sweet, disinfecting with chlorine and other agents creates Chloroform, something used to kill butterflies and sometimes aid in a kidnapping.   

BACK TO TOPIC ABOUT THE FLOW OF IDEAS —

AND WITH THEM, MONEY.  SUCH AS IT IS….

ANOTHER THING THAT SEEMS TO “FLOW” (WITH CERTAIN “CARRIER” ITEMS) IS — POWER.  AND THAT’S WHAT WE NEED TO BE MOST CONCERNED ABOUT, BECAUSE THAT POWER INCLUDES THE POWER TO INCARCERATE, THE THUMBS-UP OR THUMBS-DOWN POWER OF LIFE AND DEATH OVER PEOPLE, OR GROUPS OF PEOPLE.

SOME PEOPLE are just REAL INTENT in consolidating power, and have developed many ways to do so.

In my quest to see why I couldn’t even break a lousy individual (batterer husband) — or my own family off me, I came to understand more and more of these matters affecting the courts, and to understand (I believe) the courts for what they are — gateways to the flow of power DOWNWARDS and not for the right reasons.  I’ve seen enough, and while knowledge is power, it is the delivery system which really counts (which those holding power certainly know) — as well as the MAINTENANCE OF MYTH:

When it comes to MAINTENANCE OF MYtH — there’s nothing like religion + internet.  When it comes to hiding assets, there’s nothing like nonprofits and the internet — and pre-existing institutions.  When it comes to DISTRACTION — there’s nothing like trapping people’s time in a SINGLE system (with captive, so to speak) audiences — rather than understanding how systems interact with each other.

As we speak, I have been accumulating layers (weaving, as it were) of understanding of various threads.  ALL of those threads lead to distribution of money and bring up the question of the IRS.  This brings up the question of whose bright idea it, and the Federal Reserve, and so many other coordinated things that they absolutely do comprise a FABRIC with a certain MODEL that is being (has been) stretched over the U.S. over time.

The CORE of this model is — I’m sure of it now — ECONOMIC

It is the centralization of wealth (as opposed to “money”)

with frightening systems of control, destruction, incarceration, potential forced psychiatric drugging, or simply peddling of narcotics (in addition to the drugging of kids in foster care — or schools — to control them, as well as the elderly, as well as the mentally unstable, as well as the . . . (get it?)  )

we have become also accustomed (too many of us) to believe that DOLLARS are MONEY —

when Dollars are NOT real money– Dollars are Debt-Notes.  

They might as well be play-dough.

And too many legislators have a dual allegiance — one of which is in the Vatican.

The others which say they aren’t Catholic have forgotten that George W. Bush has been called a better Catholic the John F. Kennedy.  JFK actually had a fight with his conscience where faith fought his oath as President of the United States to uphold and defend the Constitution.

I don’t think the former Presidential contestant, Rick Santorum (nor, Michelle Bachmann)

would have had such troubling thoughts as a conscience of the law of the land might give.

They do seem to center geographically on Washington, D.C. (and historically so), with of course hot spots in various states where certain (nonprofit trade associations) have coalesced.  Like, Denver, or Chicago — or some in California (Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco).  In the middle of the country, Minnesota (out of all places) has been a hotspot of “DV” activity.   Wisconsin seems to have been a test state almost, for welfare reform (Tommy Thompson, etc.) and is the home state of this “AFCC” I keep talking about. . . . . .  Indiana, Kansas, Oklahoma are — well, what they are (very “fatherhood” friendly).  Don’t ask me why NY comes to mind in this area — but it doesn’t.

LET’s CHANGE GEARS:

This blog has been “FAMILY COURT” focused (for its duration).  However, as I kept pulling strands like this — ON MARRIAGE AND FAITH-BASED GRANTEES, SET UP BY HHS COMPASSION GRANTS, MARKETING MATERIALS FROM “SMARTMARRIAGE.COM” CONFERENCEES, DIVERTING FUNDS FROM WELFARE (NEEDY, OFTEN SINGLE-MOTHER HOUSEHOLDS) TO END UP IN PROGRAM HANDS, AS THE “LOW-INCOME” POPULATION STAY THAT WAY — BUT AT LEAST HAVE THE PRIVILEGE OF BECOMING PART OF A SOCIAL SCIENCE ENGINEERING TEST RUN, IN ASSOCIATION WITH COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL MODIFICATION INSTITUTES ACROSS THE UNIVERSITY “CENTERS OF EXCELLENCE” LAND, INCLUDING IN GEORGIA, DENVER, AND ELSEWHERE: **

. . . . I kept running smack into the problem that, the problem is the dual class system set up by Nonprofit status, to start with.  Nonprofits form boards, have salaries paid, either do (which = prosperity) sell out to HHS policy (which is itself blended with corporate wealth, see GWBush, already) — or go the private foundation route (i.e., PRIVATE wealth) — and from that platform, go about attempting to restructure the entire PUBLIC institution infrastructure, for its own good (as defined by the privately-founded wealth) etc.   Roughly speaking, this might be called — and was exemplified by, the Robert Rectors (Heritage Foundation — i.e., just let us BE the United States Government, after all, we already know how to run things) versus the Peter Edelmans (Georgetown Law, and with the proven track record in Civil Rights, and in association with Children’s Defense Fund, see (his wife), Marian Wright Edelman, who are — let us FIX the United States Government — and by the way, we are taking private wealth.

What about people whose goal is NOT world change (“OUR version, for everyone — not THEIR version, for everyone), but, supporting ourselves and our families, staying active in our communities, and having time left to sleep — plus food to eat?   Suppose we are happy within normal spheres of endeavor — we may want to travel some around the globe, but are not invested in owning and running it?

If I had to go to dinner with one of the two, I’d pick the Edelmans any day, but I do not endorse either of their policies; both are “change agents” and believe that their collective personal vision should be inflicted on future generations, whereas, I’m a single mother (or was), and have daughters — and just don’t happen to agree.   Why?  Because there’s such a thing as too much “SYSTEM.”  Whoever runs a system for the nation, controls the nation — and a lot of its funding.  And the public school system is similar to the family law system.  They’re both here, feed on each other, and put IDEAS (not just people) in boxes, demand payment from someone else for doing this, but when it comes to FENCES (regulations on the administrators of the system), then the parents and nonparents supporting these systems — are FENCED out. See “metal detectors” and “lockdown.”  I cannot think of a more overt collective attack on this country than those two systems, combined, have done to its children — and with the children, the parents who actually DO care about them, but must fight the government for access to their own kids, or a relationship with them.

In short, I don’t believe in nationwide SYSTEMS, period, except where absolutely essential.  I say that having (sort of) survived an abusive “nuclear family” system and am still reeling from the extended family (plus friends) GANG simply because my children were wonderful (and irresistible), and, can you spell, “the love of money”?   I believe this is what middle-aged people (both genders) do when their own (professionally OK, or even successful) lives are simply boring, unrewarding, or meaningless.

(SO, that long link above link is to a topic on Scranton PT which has a recent dredging of the marriage- and faith-based shell corps (and resulting headlines about their various frauds) AND shows how a major community change initiative by Saul Alinsky (Industrial Areas Foundation — now based out of Grace Episcopal in Chicago) (a) worked and (b) morphed from “using” the access to people that churches represented, to strengthening churches AS institutions and centers for receiving (federal) grants to change communities.  It seems the HHS was fine with that — and somehow money is getting lost in the process.

CHURCHES COMMUNITY CHANGE AGENTS WITH CONTROL-CENTRAL:

A few of the posts (on that topic & forum) also uncovered in the process a COPYCAT of the Industrial Areas Foundation adapted to Christianity — or at least the veneer of churchianity — apparently some woman was overly impressed by some man who (it turned out) had himself been through PICO training.  What “PICO” is appears to be a recruiting process — an organization trawls locally for leadership material and then recruits them into separate membership which becomes a “change agent” and then that local leaders goes forth and conquers. . . . . . . .  I guess this is an alternative to normal judicial & legislative processes, perhaps….  (A SAMPLE COMMENT)

Here’s re: PICO, allegedly modeled after Saul Alinksy ideas and around neighborhood organizing.  Apparently neighborhoods now being more fractured, they headed for the churches (ca. 1980s). Interesting and relevant from wikipedia.  PICO (Pacific Institute for Community Organizing) started in Oakland, CA  1972, by a Jesuit priest, John Bauman

Spoiler
PICO National Network provides training and consultation and develops national strategy for its affiliated congregation-based community organizations. As of 2007 PICO had 53 local and regional affiliates, representing 150 cities in 17 states, with 1000 member institutions claiming to represent a million people.[1] It is also involved with organizing and training efforts in six countries of Central America and Rwanda in Africa

PICO conducts six-day national leadership development seminars four times a year, teaching the theory and practice of congregation-based organizing. Each year an additional seminar is presented in Spanish. Local affiliates also provide members and leaders with training on building and sustaining strong organizations, identifying potential leaders through one-on-one relational meetings, researching community issues, developing budgets, and working with public officials.[11]

PICO leader attracted to ideas of Saul Alinksy, i.e. incl.  Alinsky’s tactics were often unorthodox. In Rules for Radicals Alinsky wrote, “[t]he job of the organizer is to maneuver and bait the establishment so that it will publicly attack him as a ‘dangerous enemy.'” According to Alinsky, “the hysterical instant reaction of the establishment [will] not only validate [the organizer’s] credentials of competency but also ensure automatic popular invitation.”[8]

PICO is basically community organizing to solve the world’s (i.e., it mentions urban, suburban and rural) projects — with connections to Central America and Rwanda…

In PICO’s congregation-community model, congregations of all denominations and faiths serve as the institutional base for community organizations. Rather than bring people together simply based on common issues like housing or education, the faith-based or broad-based organizing model makes values and relationships the glue that holds organizations together.

PICO National Network - Unlocking the Power of People

PICO builds community organizations based on religious congregations, schools and community centers, which are often the only stable civic gathering places in many neighborhoods

REGARDING the North County Sponsoring Committee (aka Faith Works) — it’s basically a PICO affiliate.

FROM 2002 return, its nonprofit purpose is to provide leadership training:

To strengthen North San Diego County families and communities by assisting religious congregations and other community groups in the development of leadership that is educated and organized for effective participation in civic life

No officers paid yet, and no employees.  Largest expense under “other” includes PICO consulting fee:  $14,675, plus training fees and training mileage:

This is fascinating — but mostly in its context, which I realize you are not, just now.


America’s Unified Family Courts (UFCs)– forget! due process, this is about “Treating” the Whole Family

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Robert Wood Johnson Foundation + ABA + HHS/DOJ (+Monsanto, CIGNA + Ford) = Unified Family Courts = Treat the Whole Family


This post is three of (my) comments from the “(Kids for Cash)” topic at Scranton Political Times…   Those who teach about “abuse” should be teaching about this — because how these courts were set up DOES rather explain why they have spawned (comparison intentional), literally, protest movements across the country, from their horrid treatment of litigants, particularly ignoring facts, law, and due process in individual cases).  They are horrible wastes of time and mind (a mind is a terrible thing to waste, is it not?) — and exist to dominate and intimidate, literally, the human spirit and eliminate the “unalienable rights” that SOME believe are innate (“unalienable”) to every man. . . . .And now that “every man” is to include more men – -and women . . . . those crying out for “Children’s Rights” don’t even endorse what’s right to start with — the REPUBLIC (representative government under rule of law) of the United States (plural) of America — not the Oligarchy, the Aristocracy, or the THEocracy of the USA!! — and turning the entire country, starting with children, adding youth, and expanding upwards into adults — into a treatable-at-will population — is hardly a Republic!

I was checking NAFCJ.net for a link to “the money trail” and happened across an unexplored link on there to grants by this Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to help the ABA create Unified Courts.  These grants spanned the period 1996-1999; my attention was hooked, and this is what developed:

It is worth processing if you are concerned about these topics.  I believe we need to FULLY understand who’s running the Justice and Legal Systems of the country, particularly if we are in the situation of attempting to squeeze some water out of a stone in those halls. . .   . . . .

I AM WRITING as a single woman who could never have anticipated, as a 20, 30, or 40 year old how dangerous this country has become for ethical, moral, working, and competent women who are also mothers, and value that role as they also value pulling their own weight.  Such women are horrors to this system — as they don’t need treatment, nor do their kids — but after a few years in it, ALL will!

So this is, literally, HOW the ABA (incl. AFCC) and others USED the family law system to turn “divorce” into a disease and treat every one for it, as collateral in treating for substance abuse and of course mental health problems.  That divorce is NOT a disease hardly matters in the face of such a policy backed by such power.

PART I (first comment on the topic from Scranton PT):

Since the idea sucks,
WHOSE IDEA WAS “UNIFIED FAMILY COURTS,”

ANYHOW, and WHY?

 

Hey, remember “unified family courts” and “drug courts” (I believe there have been some complaint about Lackawanna County’s right?) and so forth? – – – I just found an old article detailing how the ABA and specific funders were pushing “treating the whole family” and “changing the justice systems” to address substance abuse by youth. An unexplored link over at NAFCJ.net, and the timing of 1996 with welfare reform.

The goal, and the whole point, was to change the justice system — from the outside, not the inside.  Foundations pushing a concept and working through the ABA & Judges, plus money didn’t hurt either.  HHS/ACF happened to agree — so once that door was open (that it’s OK to revise the courts based on somebody in power’s got a bright idea) — it stayed open.

This is a  link from the ROBERT WOOD FOUNDATION grants page.  They also helped AFCC, I believe:

Liz Richards (NAFCJ.net) had linked to it long ago from:

which leads to:
Grants 

$$$
How our money is misused to discriminate against women and children
http://www.statejustice.org/grantinfo/chifam.htm [broken link]
http://www.rwjf.org/reports/grr/029319s.htm [UFC link]

And here we can read:

Unified Family Courts: Treating the Whole Family, Not Just the Young Drug Offender

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is powerful one, focused exclusively on health fields (and the largest philanthropy with this focus; been doing this for 40 years; influences medical education field, etc.)and Unified Family Courts (for substance abuse treatment) were one of their projects

SUMMARY

From November 1996 through June 1999, the American Bar Association (ABA) developed six Unified Family Court (UFC) systems in three U.S. states and one territory and created a network of national groups to help educate the public about Unified Family Courts.

UFCs combine the functions of family and juvenile courts to provide a comprehensive approach to treating and educating young drug offenders and their families. This approach recognizes that substance abuse results from a combination of problems related to health, family structure, economics and community support. UFCs offer an effective alternative to a justice system that frequently treats substance abuse solely as a legal problem.

Key Results

  • See Grant Detail & Contact Information   Notice the Baltimore Connection (I have — it’s an AFCC stronghold) — this group helped Chester Harhut & Lackawanna County set up ITS “UFC”, remember?
  • In Baltimore, Md., a pilot UFC was established in September 1998. The state legislature approved $1 million for the Baltimore pilot UFC project and $4 million to create Family Divisions in four other judicial districts. For each case, judges can order social services, including substance abuse and mental health counseling, and diversion programs. The Baltimore Family Court has also developed an assessment/evaluation procedure that the project director believes provides a replicable model for evaluation at other UFC sites.

I blogged this (with some sarcasm) in March 2012:

  • Marylands Family Court Expansion, AFCC Model, takes Unifying Symbols to a New Level: Paper, Cotton, Leather, Fruit, Wood, Iron . . .”First of all, they are about as unbelievingly condescending and patronizing (move over, let us experts handle your family give us your kid, etc.) as it is possible for any human relationship to be, apart from some truly unhealthy (i.e., violent/abusive) ones.  They deal in force, and subterfuge when it comes to proliferating the program, and like any good, truly disaster capitalism enterprise, they deal with distressed populations, exploit them, and call that service.”  [My blog connects Barbara Babb of Baltimore to Lackawanna County pilot program in UFC]

After the Grant
The ABA continues to work with the six sites and has provided technical assistance to eight other states. It also is involved in a project funded by the Scripps-Howard Foundation to examine literacy as a way to address substance abuse in four family courts.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) launched a national program, called Reclaiming Futures: Communities Helping Teens Overcome Drugs, Alcohol & Crime®. It is building community solutions to substance abuse and delinquency by developing the systems infrastructure necessary to deliver comprehensive care within the juvenile justice system. See the program’s Web site for more information. . . .Funding

RWJF provided a $481,605 grant to the ABA for its work on UCF systems..(they mean “UFC — Unified Family Courts”)

In 1994, ABA adopted a resolution calling for the promotion and implementation of UFC systems to make the courts more responsive to family problems. {{??}} By 1996, six states had established versions of UFCs statewide, and four states had some UFCs operating on the county level.

[That, friends, is how the ABA operates…] [NOW for the FUNDING]:

Other Funding The ABA solicited and obtained additional project funding from the private sector and government, including:

  • the US Department of Justice ($100,000),
  • the ABA’s Standing Committee on Substance Abuse ($90,000),
  • CIGNA Corporation ($30,000),**
  • Monsanto ($10,000),** and
  • Ford Motor Company ($5,000).  [Ford is into most govermental things, and in the 1970s had helped from MDRC, which runs demonstration programs onw elfare and the courts, etc.]]

Those names should ring a few bells.  Look at some of them!

* *”Grrreat” — Monsanto is “only” the food giant that’s trying to put non-GMO and organic farmers out of business and basically co-opt the US Food supply. (Ya gotta read this one) Monsanto, Wikipedia:

… multinational agricultural biotechnology corporation. It is the world’s leading producer of the herbicide glyphosate, marketed in the Roundup brand, and in other brands. Monsanto is also the second largest producer of genetically engineered (GE) seed; it provides the technology in 49% of the genetically engineered seeds used in the US market.”. . .Monsanto’s development and marketing of genetically engineered seed and bovine growth hormone, as well as its aggressive litigation, political lobbying practices, seed commercialization practices and “strong-arming” of the seed industry[4

In 2009 Monsanto came under scrutiny from the U.S. Justice Department, which began investigating whether the company’s activities in the soybean markets were breaking anti-trust rules.[4][5]


What better corporation to contribute to an ANTI-Drug Abuse program which creates  genetically modified seeds, bovine growth hormone, and strong arm tactics + lobbying to maintain it — and financial clout to help create an alternate justice system (treatment versus accountability….)!!

Monsanto’s Harvest of Fear (Vanity Fair Article):

Monsanto relies on a shadowy army of private investigators and agents in the American heartland to strike fear into farm country. They fan out into fields and farm towns, where they secretly videotape and photograph farmers, store owners, and co-ops; infiltrate community meetings; and gather information from informants about farming activities. Farmers say that some Monsanto agents pretend to be surveyors. Others confront farmers on their land and try to pressure them to sign papers giving Monsanto access to their private records. Farmers call them the seed police and use words such as Gestapo and Mafia to describe their tactics.

[Starting to sound like the Unified Family Court “treatment Gestapo police” now in place?  Birds of a feather..]

in 1980 the U.S. Supreme Court, in a five-to-four decision, turned seeds into widgets, laying the groundwork for a handful of corporations to begin taking control of the worlds food supply . . .Monsanto patents SEEDS; farmers who use theirs sign an agreement to NOT save seeds, they are suing farmers into whose fields Monsanto seeds may, for example, drift (i.e., by wind).

With an agenda like this, it’s understandable why Monsanto may want a role in dismantling the US legal system!   !!!  (Other Monsanto Gov’t ties)  http://www.organicconsumers.org/monsanto/index.cfm

Millions Against Monsanto

CIGNA’s quite a player also: 

(from 1982 merger of Connecticut General Life — dating to 1865! and INA (Insurance Company of NA)  Before selling its international property and casualty business to the Bermuda-based ACE Insurance company in the late 1990s, CIGNA was among the companies with the largest international network in the league of Allianz, AIG and Zurich.  . . .CIGNA now operates in 25 countries, has in excess of 42,000 employees and manages around US$110 billion in assets . . .In October 2011, CIGNA has agreed to buy HealthSpring Inc. for $3.8 billion to jump-start its business selling Medicare plans from 46,000 Medicare Advantage members to almost 400,000 Medicare Advantage members. The payment would come from issue new equity to cover about 20 percent of the value, with the rest funded by additional cash and debt.

Gee,  I “can’t imagine” why — right around the time of “block grants to the states” welfare reform — CIGNA, being a global “health service” company might want to help the ABA turn large parts of the US Justice system into a treatment-philosophy-based system, including treat the whole family for one member’s substance abuse!

So, here’s the ABA creating all these Unified Family Courts  (hint:  The ABA membership includes subset no doubt of AFCC membership, who also are into unified courts = more business for the mental health membership..)

“Other in-kind support was provided by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) of the federal Department of HHS, the Administrative Office of the Courts in Maryland (AOC), and ABA volunteers.  “

In short — have to watch out for these outfits… (that’s the UBaltimore one — see blog post)

Contact CFCC

Here’s how the ABA overcame opposition to UFC in Washington DC:

In Washington, D.C., the ABA worked on a strategy to establish a UFC. Judicial opposition to family court reform, based chiefly on economic concerns, blocked significant progress toward the UFC model. The ABA met with the Chief Judge, the primary opponent, and worked with UFC proponents in the District. Family and Child Services, a branch of the District of Columbia’s Child Protection Agency, and an ad hoc group of representatives from the judicial leadership and social service providers, have assumed the lead in efforts to explore the feasibility of a UFC approach in the District.

Does this part of the ABA seem like it’s going to take “No thanks!” as an answer?

Publicizing by ABA:

The ABA developed a network of national organizations to support UFCs. The American Judges Association, the Conference of Chief Justices, the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, {{OBVIOUSLY this group would be in favor of UFC’s – gets its membership more customers!!}} the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, [NCJFCJ] and Join Together (a national organization created by RWJF that provides technical assistance and information** to communities on issues involving substance abuse and gun violence) distributed information and/or collaborated with the ABA on UFC programs

– – – – -**The phrase “technical assistance and information” ANYwhere should be better read “indoctrination — do it OUR way; but if anyone asks, we’re just “helping” (and not responsible if it backfires).- – – – – – –

Apparently in 2006, “Join Together” was phased out by RWJF to be replaced by a “VULNERABLE POPULATIONS” project:

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), which for two decades has been the most generous and visible private funder of addiction treatment and prevention programs in the U.S., has announced that it will no longer have a separate program area for funding addiction-related programs.

“Instead, any new grantmaking related to addiction will take place under the foundation’s Vulnerable Populations portfolio, said foundation president and CEO Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, M.D., in a recent letter to RWJF grantees. Often the neediest populations such as the chronically homeless, new immigrants, victims of domestic abuse** are faced with multiple health and social issues, including addiction, that must be addressed in an integrated way for these individuals to succeed. The Vulnerable Populations grantmaking effort focuses mainly on these populations.

**the substance abuse is often related to other kinds of abuse, which is already known (acestudy.org) from other longitudinal studies.  Perhaps if someone could focus on stopping the INJUSTiCE (including violence towards family members) instead of constantly TREATING it (both victm and perp as if both were responsible) there’d be less substance abuse!  (who knows?)

So now they’re going for “supportive housing” to keep kids out of the foster care system.  Guess who’s helping with THAT project?

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has partnered with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (ACF) and three private foundations to jointly fund a $35 million initiative to further test how supportive housing can help stabilize highly vulnerable families and keep children out of the foster care system. . . .Collaborating foundations include the Annie E. Casey FoundationCasey Family Programs, and the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation
This groundbreaking initiative is based on a successful pilot effort in New York City, known as Keeping Families Together (KFT) that took place between October 2007 and July 2009

This is actually an upcoming grant opportunity, $5 million available, per HHS. It’s under CAPTA (child abuse prevention).

What’s Wrong with this Picture? (coming….)

Interesting:  AFCC cite to the foundation:  see note at bottom of the page:  http://afcc.crinfo.org/action/search-profile.jsp?key=14482&type=web

This beta-test, demonstration gateway has been developed to demonstrate the structure of the Conflict Research Consortium’s joint gateway program to the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.

This test site has not, in any way, been approved by the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts.

Guy Burgess and Heidi Burgess, Co-Directors and Editors
c/o Conflict Research Consortium, University of Colorado
Campus Box 580, Boulder, CO 80309
Phone: (303) 492-1635; Contac

— Edited by Outlaw_Wild_DoubleBill-KickbackCourts on Wednesday 4th of July 2012 11:06:09 PM on Wednesday 4th of July 2012 11:23:37 PM


PARTS II & III:

The powers that be (like ABA, foundations, HHS, etc.) determined among themselves that treatment is better than justice.  That some of them happened be in the treatment business must just be coincidence.

From November 1996 through June 1999, the American Bar Association (ABA) developed six Unified Family Court (UFC) systems in three U.S. states and one territory and created a network of national groups to help educate the public about Unified Family CourtsUFCs offer an effective alternative to a justice system that frequently treats substance abuse solely as a legal problem

Notice:  justice system — or treatment system.  Which would you rather have when walking into a courtroom?  Would you like to know which one you’re up for when it says “court” on the outside?

So, here comes that Robt Wood Johnson Foundation:

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) launched a national program, called Reclaiming Futures: Communities Helping Teens Overcome Drugs, Alcohol & Crime®.

… USPTO and trademarking social service reform (see that “®”?)

  • Search  . .Reclaiming Futures: Communities Helping Teens Overcome Drugs, Alcohol & Crime and get:

Sure ‘nuf that’s a robert wood johnson trademark:

Serial Number Reg. Number Word Mark Check Status Live/Dead
1 76117473 2592702 RECLAIMING FUTURES TARR LIVE
2 75627894 2540943 PROTECTING OUR FUTURE BY RECLAIMING OUR PAST TARR LIVE

They trademarked the act of giving grants!

IC 036. US 100 101 102. G & S: Charitable services, namely, providing grants to programs to combat substance abuse and delinquency. FIRST USE: 2001/01/25. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 20010125

{interesting, executive order GWBush establishing faith-based office was 2001/01/29…}{Filed for opposition: August 24, 2000}

Owner (REGISTRANT) Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The NON-PROFIT CORPORATION NEW JERSEY Route One & College Road East P.O. Box 2316 Princeton NEW JERSEY 085432316
Attorney of Record Richard C. Woodbridge

Reclaiming Futures logo

(the logo is also a hyperlink)

In 2001, with a $21 million investment from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 10 founding communities located throughout the United States began reinventing the way police, courts, detention facilities, treatment providers, and the community work together to meet this urgent need

Amazing what a $21 million investment can do . . ..

“Reclaiming Futures has been evaluated by The Urban Institute in Washington, D.C., in collaboration with the Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago.”  (RWJF helped pay for the evaluation also)
Now there are six partners, including from OJJDP, HHS (SAMSHA), another foundation, Portland State, and a research institute at Portland state.

“Re-engineer the justice system in your state” (how-to manual):
Bring Reclaiming Futures to Your State or Tribal Lands »
Re-engineer the juvenile justice system in your state or region to avoid unnecessary costs and cut recidivism. Here’s how to get started.

RWJF + ABA = UFCs + Drug Courts (cont’d.)

For the Record, American Bar Association is listed at HHS as “Private Profit (large) Business.”  

HHS has donated over $20.6 million of grants to the ABA per TAGGS.hhs.gov. So taxpayers are supporting it, too, even if they’re not engaged in litigation.

ABA activism (from site below about Unified Family Courts):

From 1992 to 1996, RWJF funded the ABA Standing Committee on Substance Abuse’s Community Anti-Drug Coalition Initiative to mobilize lawyers, judges, and justice system leaders to help create new justice systems and structures to solve the substance abuse problem (see Grant Results [] on ID#s 019838 and 023195).

The ABA was also instrumental in persuading legal community leaders to support drug courts for juveniles, which link juvenile justice and community treatment resources to juvenile drug offenders and their legal caretakers.

OK, get JUVENILES into treatment, what next?

The ABA then helped cities nationwide set up drug courts for adultoffenders, which offer defendants who have been charged with a drug offense (typically first-time, non-violent offenders) court supervised substance abuse treatment in lieu of incarceration. Drug courts can motivate drug users to enter rehabilitation programs and reestablish productive lifestyles. These courts have dramatically decreased recidivism rates and drug use among participants.  [have they?]

UFC’s complement the work of the drug courts. UFCs combine the functions of family courts (which handle family-related legal issues) and juvenile courts (which handle [criminal or status offence, they should’ve said] cases in which minors are involved) into one entity and provide a comprehensive approach to helping “families in crisis. UFCs incorporate treatment for young substance abuse offenders into the wide range of cases heard in civil court involving family matters.

– – – – -OK, what’s that mean?

– – – – Basically, where family court would’ve been perhaps about custody and divorce primarily, UFC’s tempt the judges to order more services, and treat the entire family — although the case may be as simple as a custody/visitation plan or a divorce, NEITHER of which are criminal matters.  Also omitted — juvenile courts are not just for people of a certain age — they are for juveniles who’ve caused (or allegedly caused) some problems, committing a legitimate crime (breaking and entering, robbery, rape/sexual assault, etc.) OR “status offence,” i.e. violated some rules that wouldn’t apply to adults, like a curfew, or attendance at school (truancy violations).

Changed the entire climate, definitely affecting people with straightforward business in the FAMILY court who may not be sick or criminal.  This was less for the families than for the court’s convenience, and for its liaisons with treatment-providing organizations.

You can look up ABA HHS grants around this time and see:

#90CW1087 
Award Title: CHILD WELFARE RESEARCH AND DEMONSTRATIONS 
OPDIV: ADMINISTRATION FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES (ACF)
Organization: CHILDREN’S BUREAU (CB)
Award Class: DISCRETIONARY
FY Recipient City State CFDA Budget Year of Support Award Code Agency Action Issue Date Amount This Action
1998 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 5 0 ACF 09-17-1998 $ 700,000 
1998 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 4 1 ACF 09-30-1997 $ 80,000 
1998 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 4 2 ACF 04-15-1998 $ 26,004 
1998 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 4 3 ACF 06-24-1998 $ 21,276 
Fiscal Year 1998 Total: $ 827,280
FY Recipient City State CFDA Budget Year of Support Award Code Agency Action Issue Date Amount This Action
1997 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 4 0 ACF 09-10-1997 $ 450,000 
1997 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 3 1 ACF 12-19-1996 $ 0 
1997 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 3 2 ACF 03-29-1997 $ 0 
1997 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 3 3 ACF 08-20-1997 $ 3,369 
Fiscal Year 1997 Total: $ 453,369
FY Recipient City State CFDA Budget Year of Support Award Code Agency Action Issue Date Amount This Action
1996 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 03 000 ACF 09-25-1996 $ 400,000 
1996 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 03 001 ACF 12-19-1996 $ 0 
1996 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 03 002 ACF 03-29-1997 $ 0 
Fiscal Year 1996 Total: $ 400,000
FY Recipient City State CFDA Budget Yr of Support Award Code Agency ActionIssue Date Amount This Action
1995 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 02 000 ACF 09-29-1995 $ 400,000 
1995 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 02 001 ACF 09-29-1995 $ 38,947 
1995 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 02 002 ACF 09-30-1995 $ 3,310 
1995 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 02 003 ACF 01-22-1996 $ 0 
1995 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  WASHINGTON DC 93608 02 004 ACF 07-15-1996 $ 55,125 
Fiscal Year 1995 Total: $ 497,382
Total of all award actions: $ 2,178,031

AND:

Award Number: MCU11A301
Award Title: PARTNERS IN PGRM PLANNING FOR ADOLESCENT HEALTH 
OPDIV: HEALTH RESOURCES AND SERVICES ADMINISTRATION (HRSA)
Organization: MATERNAL CHILD HEALTH / SYSTEMS EDUCATION AND SCIENCE (MCHB)
Award Class: COOPERATIVE AGREEMENT

Showing: 1 – 2 of 2 Award Actions

FY Recipient City State CFDA Budget Year of Support Award Code Agency Action Issue Date Amount This Action
1997 AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION  CHICAGO IL 93110 02 000 HRSA 09-02-1997 $ 100,000 
Fiscal Year 1997 Total: $ 100,000
Fiscal Year 1996 Total: $ 100,000
Total of all award actions: $ 200,000

Showing: 1 – 2 of 2 Award Actions

NON-COMPETING CONTINUATN
KATHI GRASSO 7 $ 100,000

So, ABA is a partner in “HEALTH SERVICES.”  Principal Investigator “Kathi Grasso”:

Ms. Grasso worked for the ABA Center for Children and the Law, OJJDP atsome point and is a member of NACC based in WDC.   She has a degree from Catholic University.  .She’s very active around the country and publishing on these matters:

  • (footnote to an NACC publication) A Judges Guide to Improving Legal Representation of Children, edited by Kathi Grasso, ABA Center on Children and the Law, © ABA May 1998.
  • Kathi Grasso  [From OJJDP “staff” list]
    Senior Juvenile Justice Policy and Legal Advisor
    202-xxx-xxxx
    kathi.grasso@usdoj.gov
First she worked for the (activist) ABA center for children, then she moved over to OJJDP which is a large agency which allocates GRANTS in Judicial Programs; as there she also functioned (I see) as OJJDP Liaison to other ABA commissions on Youth At Risk (etc.) causes.
(presented at some workshop on representing Indigents, in Texas)

Video 2: Keynote: Effectuating Reform in Juvenile Justice
Presenters: Kathi Grasso, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention with the U.S. Department of Justice
Link to handout and Juvenile Ten Core Principles

_ _ _ _ _
Curious about who was over the “Child Welfare Research and Demo” Grant (above), I looked — it’s a Mark Hardin, who retired in 2009 after 30 years of this type of advocacy:
Award Number Budg Yr Action Issue Date CFDA Principal Investigator Sum of Actions
90CW1087 02 09/29/1995 93608 MARK HARDIN $ 438,947
90CW1087 02 09/30/1995 93608 $ 3,310
90CW1087 02 01/22/1996 93608 $ 0
90CW1087 02 07/15/1996 93608 $ 55,125
90CW1087 03 09/25/1996 93608 $ 400,000
03 12/19/1996 93608 $ 0
03 03/29/1997 93608 $ 0
3 12/19/1996 93608 $ 0
3 03/29/1997 93608 $ 0
90CW1087 3 08/20/1997 93608 $ 3,369
90CW1087 4 09/10/1997 93608 $ 450,000
90CW1087 4 09/30/1997 93608  (etc.) $ 80,000
90CW1087 4 04/15/1998 93608 $ 26,004
90CW1087 4 06/24/1998 93608 $ 21,276
4 03/24/1999 93608 $ 0
4 04/26/1999 93608 $ 0
90CW1087 5 09/17/1998 93608 MARK HARDIN $ 700,000
5 04/26/1999 93608 MARK HARDIN $ 0
PROFILE from ABA shows:

Mark Hardin, National Child Welfare Law Authority, Retires

WASHINGTON, D.C., Oct. 13, 2009 — The American Bar Association is announcing the retirement of Mark Hardin, director of child welfare at the ABA Center on Children and the Law and an Oregon attorney.  A legal pioneer in the field of foster care and the role of the courts in aiding abused and neglected children and their families, Hardin spent 35 years utilizing his legal skills and knowledge to improve the plight of children removed from their homes due to child maltreatment.

Beginning as a legal aid lawyer in Portland, Ore., Hardin handled family, juvenile and welfare cases, giving him practical insight into the lives of vulnerable children and families.  In the late 70’s, during two years at Portland State University, Hardin forged development of the law on “permanency planning” for abused and neglected children and wrote several early publications helping social workers and policy analysts understand the legal aspects of a child’s placement in foster care.  He was among the country’s first trainers of lawyers and child welfare agency staff, educating them in their legal responsibilities relative to children removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect.

Hardin joined the Center on Children and the Law in 1980 where, according to ABA President Carolyn B. Lamm, he became “the country’s foremost legal scholar on foster care legal and judicial reforms.”

Hardin’s experience includes having directed the ABA’s National Child Welfare Resource Center on Legal and Judicial Issues, a program of the Children’s Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

  • Wait a minute.  is this “child welfare resource center on legal and judicial issues” something belonging to the ABA (a large, private, FOR-PROFIT BUSINESS) or the HHS (a dept. of the US Federal government, Executive Branch, of, by and for the people?  How can it be an ABA thing AND a program of the Children’s Bureau?  Conflict of interest, much?

. . .With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.”

     [Was that supposed to be a JOKE?  We are having frequent issues with lawyers BREAKING the law!]

AN AWARD NAMED AFTER MARK HARDIN:

First Annual

Mark Hardin Award for Child Welfare Legal Scholarship and Systems Change

The Mark Hardin Award for Child Welfare Legal Scholarship and Systems Change, created by the ABA Center on Children and the Law in 2011 with approval from the ABA Board of Governors, honors the work of Mark Hardin. Before his retirement, Mark served for almost 30 years on the staff of the ABA Center on Children and the Law as director of child welfare. Mark has long been recognized by those who work in this area of law as an early innovator in the child welfare legal field. He is recipient of the “Adoption Excellence Award” bestowed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; an award for “extraordinary contributions to children” from the administrators of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children; the prestigious “Outstanding Legal Advocacy Award” from the National Association of Counsel for Children; and an award for interdisciplinary collaboration between law and social work.

This is understandable, given common interests in these goups

ANYHOW, now there is a MARK HARDIN AWARD, and the FIRST (2012) recipient of it is the Director of CALIFORNIA’s “AOC” “Center for Families & Children in the Courts,” — which is part of the Judicial Council — DIANE NUNN.


May 23, 2012AOC Director Receives ABA award for Work on Behalf of Families and ChildrenRecipient of ABA’s First Mark Hardin Award . .SAN FRANCISCO—Diane Nunn, Division Director of the Center for Families, Children & the Courts,Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), is the recipient of the First Annual Mark Hardin Award for Child Welfare Scholarship and Systems Change

DIANE NUNN (along with “Depner” along with Isolini Ricci) is AFCC — and the AOC in California — this year, last year, and in recent years — has been split with scandal over fiscal/financial irresponsibility, a bloated bureaucracy, overbilling and fraud in the creation of a new, huge statewide computer system (CCMS) and to my recall, several of its leadership suddenly stepped down:  Ron Overholt (administrator), his replacement, and another person — after a whistleblower suit.  (see this topic at “courthousenews.com” [back issues]).
This AOC/CFCC also administers and distributes the federal grants to nonprofits around the state for the “treatment programs” parents and kids are ordered into, as well as the Access/Visitation Grants.  i can see why a systems change award might go to one of their own!
” In 2000 she became the director of the Judicial Council’s AOC/Center for Families, Children & the Courts (CFCC), the first entity devoted exclusively to family and children’s issues in a statewide administrative office of the courts. As Division Director, Nunn leads a nationally-recognized team that provides an integrated, multidisciplinary approach to serving the state’s family and juvenile courts. ”
…  {{“multidisciplinary” is code word referring to AFCC many times.  It’s their hallmark.  Why just have the rule of law when you could have social workers and psychologists as well?}}
“Describing the Award & Mr. Hardin:   He is recipient of the “Adoption Excellence Award” bestowed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; an award for “extraordinary contributions to children” from the administrators of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children; the prestigious “Outstanding Legal Advocacy Award” from the National Association of Counsel for Children; and an award for interdisciplinary collaboration between law and social work.”
ABA is a private, for-profit business, supported by business(es) in the form of foundation grants, and with a little too close for comfort cooperation with HHS and the Adoption Incentives, plus the theme of we, the elite, know better how to rule society, so let’s change a few laws, and court practices!  After all, who’s going to complain — the indigent?

How Much Mileage Can DV Advocates get out of the press on San Francisco’s Ross Mirkarimi/Eliana Lopez case?

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This has been headline news for how long?  It definitely brings up mixed feelings on my part — knowing how many women are receiving far more severe battery, false imprisonment, endangering children and intimidating witnesses throughout the Bay Area, and have been for years — many years.  While each time there is some press, someone from one of the organizations gets quoted.

March 31, 2012, last Saturday, Section “C,”* an article laid out at top of the page, full width, and by Columnist C.W. Nevius), reads:

(*Bay Area section of the SF Chronicle)

Wife’s anger misdirected in Mirkarimi case.”

Eliana Lopez is furious at the way her domestic violence dispute with her husband, suspended Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, has been handled.

Too bad. Because the process worked perfectly.

Was it messy and painful? Absolutely. But it is also important and worthwhile.

This week, Myrna Melgar, a survivor of domestic violence,**  wrote a passionate account – with Lopez’s blessing – of her friend’s devastation and anger in how the case was handled. While the opinion piece in the Bay Guardian had some fascinating details, it missed the main point.

Neither Lopez nor Mirkarimi seems able to get beyond the anger toward neighbor Ivory Madison, who called attention to the alleged abuse and then provided the damning video of Lopez crying and pointing to a bruise.

Melgar wrote that the process empowers people “to make decisions on this woman’s behalf, against her consistent and fervently expressed wishes.”

That’s right. It does. And that’s what it should do.

“This is why domestic violence advocates have been seen as evildoers,” said Kathy Black, executive director of La Casa de las Madres. “They say we are breaking up families. The helper becomes the one who is blamed.”
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/03/30/BANI1NSJ36.DTL#ixzz1quHv5VFi

**not sure this is the same “Myrna Melgar, just included the LinkedIn profile which shows her professional/civic leadership in the area.  It probably is)

This is the Bay Guardian article, and it seems well written enough.  I’m glad someone filled in a few of these details, including a factor that until 5 Mr. Mirkarimi was raised in a bi-cultural family (Russian Jewish mother/ Iranian Muslim father), and then was separated from his father.  There seems to be a sense of father-absence here:

(The bulk of my post is addressing topics raised in this article, particularly a certain reference to a Canadian sociologist for insight into this Californian incident).

03.27.12 – 3:01 pm |

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By Myrna Melgar

Myrna Melgar is a Latina survivor of childhood domestic violence, a feminist, and the mother of three girls. She is a former legislative aide to Sup. Eric Mar.

Eliana Lopez is my friend. I have asked for her permission to put into words, in English, some observations, thoughts and insights reached during our many conversations these past few weeks about her experience with San Francisco’s response to the allegation of domestic violence by her husband, Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi  . . .  (Please read the article).

. . .According to Eliana, the context of what happened between them on December 31 actually started much earlier. Ross grew up as the only son of a single teenage mother of Russian Jewish descent and an absent Iranian immigrant father. Pressured by the opposition of her family to her relationship with an Iranian Muslim, Ross’s mother divorced his father by the time he was five. Ross was raised on a small, nearly all-white island in New England, with no connection to his father. When he had the opportunity, Ross traveled to Chicago, where his father had remarried and built a new family with two sons. Ross’s father turned him away. In Eliana’s analysis, Ross’s greatest fear is that his painful story with his father will be replayed again with Theo.

I can just see the fathers’ rights groups (which are mens’ rights groups) spinning this one to blame Mr. Mirkarimi’s abuse of his wife on his lack of a father (and not perhaps some of the standards that might have been learned in the first five years of his life, or anything else).

Eliana Lopez came to San Francisco from Venezuela with hope in her head and love in her heart. She decided to leave behind her beautiful city of Caracas, a successful career as an actress, and her family and friends, following the dream of creating a family and a life with a man she had fallen in love with but barely knew, Ross Mirkarimi.

Whirlwind romance, charmer?  Another article (reporting on this one) adds:

Heather Knight Thursday, March 29, 2012

Melgar’s piece describes how Lopez came to San Francisco after she and then-Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi became pregnant on one of his visits to her native Venezuela

(He got his girlfriend knocked up in the course of leisure? or business?  Not mentioned — were they married at the time?

(Michael Macor/The Chronicle)

Eliana Lopez, wife of San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, speaks to the news media about the three misdemeanor charges against her husband, on Friday Jan. 13, 2012, in San Francisco, Ca

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/03/28/BAS31NRKL3.DTL#ixzz1qv1dHpDm

Bay Guardian Op-Ed, cont’d.:

Well-educated, progressive, charismatic, and artistic, she made friends easily. She and Ross seemed like a great match. Both were committed environmentalists, articulate and successful. They had a son, Theo. {{see above…}} As they settled into domestic life, however, problems began to surface. The notoriously workaholic politician did not find his family role an easy fit. A bachelor into his late forties, Ross had trouble with the quiet demands of playing a puzzle on the floor with his toddler or having an agenda-less breakfast with his wife. Ross would not make time for Eliana’s request for marriage counseling, blaming the demands of job and campaign.

Now, about prosecuting the low-level domestic violence against the wife’s wishes:

How did it come to be that a system that was intended to empower women has evolved into a system that disempowers them so completely?

I don’t know Ms. Melgar’s life story (or whether she’s currently married — sounds like not).  However, there are TWO ways the District Attorney’s Office can disempower women — if this is correct, prosecuting against the woman’s wishes when it’s supposedly a “minor” event.  Or (and this was my situation and MANY other women’s) NOT prosecuting them despite severe domestic violence, when prosecuting them  might save a life, or save ongoing destruction of life.  See

And in this politically charged event — MADE TO ORDER for anyone who didn’t want Mirkarimi’s Progressive Politics disrupting the city (notice — nothing to do with domestic violence in that phrase) — because the events had some validity.

INTERJECTION — information from Purpleberets.org — and the topic is well-covered at the Sonoma County (Northern CA, not too far from SF) “Women’s Justice Center.”  This is talking about much, MUCH more severe cases where DA refused to prosecute.   (And if you know my blog, the case underlying it — and which eventually led to my blogging habit — was when district attorneys in TWO Counties refused to stop a child-stealing in action, or to prosecute it — ever.  The general practice over a number of years (by law enforcement, specifically — I’m talking police in a number of cities, county sheriffs in more than one, and the district attorney’s office.  As it turns out later, the person in charge of the “Alameda County Family Justice Center” (a hybrid creation by DA’s office and others modeled on San Diego’s one which came out of the City Attorneys’ Office — I’ve blogged this plenty elsewhere), Ms. Nadia Lockyer, then went on to win the position of County Supervisor (with help of a $1 million campaign funding and  very, very, very  well connected spouse 30 years her senior) — had a substance abuse problem, started an affair with someone (closer to her age) she met in rehab — himself getting off ‘meth’ — and had an incident requiring 911 assistance in a Newark (California) motel early a.m.   This is the Bay Area leadership . . . . . it’s typically about politics and careers — and NOT about preventing violence against women and services to them.  In the larger scope.

So, re: the immense power of the District Attorney’s Office: Written, I believe, around the year 2000:

California Passes Tough New Domestic Violence Laws — by Maria DeSantis, director Women’s Justice Center

In effect since January 1, 2000, a patchwork of new California domestic violence laws is already providing added help for domestic violence victims. The laws, however, still leave untouched some of the biggest obstacles victims face.

. . . .

District Attorney Power Still Unfettered

A critical area for victims of rape, domestic violence, and child abuse that has been left ignored by legislators this year and in years past is the district attorney’s absolute power to refuse to file charges no matter how solid the evidence. Even if a district attorney refuses to file charges on a whole crime category, there is no legal remedy for victims. This unrestricted prosecutorial discretion is particularly dangerous for women in Sonoma County where D.A. Mike Mullins’ rate of conviction on domestic violence is one of the lowest in the state, and where he systematically under-charges cases of violence against women and children.

For example, at this writing, we at Women’s Justice Center have a case of three days of spousal rape, sodomy and beatings which the district attorney has filed only as misdemeanor domestic violence. The detective in the case states there is ample evidence to file multiple felonies.

In another case of a woman beaten to the point of a fractured skull, the D. A. refused to file at all for five months until one day the perpetrator went out and committed another assault with a deadly weapon on another victim. In yet another case of spousal rape, the district attorney and Cloverdale Police have been fighting for six months over who should pay for translating key evidence. Sadly, those are just a few of many examples.

Not only are all women put in direct and great danger by the absence of any legislative check on the district attorney’s denial of justice to women, but the D.A.’s refusal to file proper charges on these cases also suffocates and discourages police efforts. We need to work with our legislators to give them the fortitude to put restrictions on district attorney discretion now.

(For Spanish translation of this and other violence against women information, see the WJC website:www.justicewomen.com )

Back

© Marie De Santis
Women’s Justice Center
You can copy and distribute this information at will
if you include credit and don’t edit.

Back to Myrna Melgar’s article, minimizing the incident:

Unquestionably, there are women in deeply abusive relationships who need assistance getting out, who may not be able to initiate an escape on their own. Eliana’s relationship with Ross did not even come close to that standard.

It seems Myrna is oblivious to the fact that, through the family court, if Eliana did decide (later) to go to Venezuela without her husband’s assent, he could — in a moment, and don’t think such a person is unaware of this — charge her (or find someone to charge her) with parental kidnapping, put an arrest warrant out for her, and in the meantime get practically ANY family law judge in San Francisco — unless they had a personal grudge or other political reason to not do this — to switch sole custody to him, demand some sort or extradition, and/or have her thrown in jail if she came back to work things out.  And don’t think that this isn’t a possibility.  Maybe they would’ve worked it out — or maybe not.  But one thing’s for sure — I read a LOT of material put out by domestic violence groups, and have networked with hundreds, literally, of mothers over the years, and most of them were completely ambushed by the concept that appealing to domestic violence laws to protect themselves and kids, even if they were IN a battered womens’ shelter — was no shield at all for later transfer of their children to their abusers.  This is literally a third line of advocacy, now — “protective parents.”  So, while it did not NOW rise to that abusive level, it certainly could’ve later.

Yet in the eyes of Ivory Madison, Phil Bronstein, District Attorney George Gascon, and even the Director of La Casa de las Madres, once her husband had grabbed her arm, Eliana was simply no longer competent and her wishes were irrelevant.

In other words, an action done by a man, over which a woman has no control whatsoever, renders the woman incompetent and irrelevant, and empowers a long list of people — most of whom are male — to make decisions on this woman’s behalf, against her consistent and fervently expressed wishes. No one in the entire chain of people who made decisions on Eliana’s behalf offered her any help — besides prosecuting her husband

 How ironic — because it is literally true, and how I WISH someone would’ve intervened in this manner during the abusive years, while our kids were growing up, in a Bay Area County.   The most dangerous place for ME to be in that county was in my home, which was one reason I became an excellent networker and made sure to get those children into a variety of activities (“healthy,” they’d be called now) in nonabusive environments and connected with other kids their age and families, too.   Police came after incidents more violent than this one (I think — I wasn’t a witness to Eliana’s case) and didn’t arrest — ever.  So they left, and the violence continued, until finally I got out, before the “fatherhood”movement was in full swing — although it was definitly operational and almost prevented me from getting a restraining order at the time.  I hadn’t been assaulted recently enough (in part, because over time one learns how to avert, avoid, dodge and diffuse situations, i.e., live like a near-fugitive in one’s own home).  This man NEVER spent a night in jail on my behalf — but it’s quite likely that if he had, earlier on, he might have woken up and mended his ways.  Maybe.
My kids and I will never know, because no officer ever arrested him.  And now that he’s been very well informed that there will be NO prosecution beyond the initial restraining order with kickout type of even (apparently the DV organizations’ funding is tied to some sort of head count on “clients served”??) — my and my kids’ lives afterwards — though there was a noticeable improvement — no one could assault me IN my house — there has been stalking, serious, harassment around (times right before and right after) my work, repeated job losses surrounding this, and long-term litigation in the family law system, which utterly drained my resources, and finally stolen, then abandoned by their father, children.
So in light of that, I am in favor of more aggressive early intervention — although it’s not quite cldear to me how to label this high-profile case, except it highlights the hypocrisy of who is, and who is not, prosecuted.
Consider, however, if there’d been a subsequent argument around the same issue after Mirkarimi had been installed as sheriff and was still in that role.  How endangered might Eliana be at that time?  I have, literally, taken a phone call from a terrified women form a (DV) support group who had just learned that her (police officer) husband had been released.  She was headed off to a shelter.  Yes, law enforcement can be abusive –and plenty abusive.
From the same article, I want to address these two paragraphs, by Eliana’s friend Ms. Melgar, which make me wonder about her other professional connections in the area:
So here is the challenge to domestic violence advocates and progressive folks who care about women: A more progressive approach to Eliana and Ross’s particular situation, and to domestic violence in general, would be to work on emphasizing early, non-law enforcement intervention and the prevention of violence against women in addition to the necessary work of extricating women from dangerous situations
I.e., she is 100% unaware of one of the largest groups in the nation doing EXACTLY this — and based in San Francisco?  (the Family Violence Prevention Fund, formerly) — and yet has this Op-Ed in the Bay Guardian, a well-respected (progressive) publication?
Professor Laureen Snider at Queens University in Ontario has argued that criminalization is a flawed strategy for dealing with violence against women.
So what? if this person argued so?  And the one anecdote (ms. Melgar’s own life) which would indicate the re-socialization of men (in particular) to not assault family members actually worked in her case.  Perhaps along with the education cited in her case, her father was also aware that criminalization would get them all deported, and that was a factor in his change?   Meanwhile, in this particular area alone (and California, even moreso) we have ample evidence that this policy is a failure — women are still being shot, attacked, stabbed, beaten, burned, stalked, and sometimes put homeless — and what’s more, bystanders are now getting increasingly shot in the process too.  Seal Beach, California.  This has happened, moreover, around the arena of the family law and custody matters, and AFTER separation from violence!!
For the record, we are in the USA, and not Canada, and under a different system of law?  Got it?  They don’t have the Bill of Rights, to my understanding.  They have closer ties (i THINK – am beginning to wonder) to a country with a monarch!  And Dr. (Ph.D.) Snider is a sociologist.  Why would this writer bring in this viewpoint – are there no adequate viewpoints on this matter of an inbound sheriff violating domestic violence laws in the USA?

Laureen Snider

Laureen SniderDepartment of Sociology, Queen’s University, Canada

Laureen Snider, a Professor of Sociology at Queen’s University, has published numerous studies on corporate crime, regulation and governance including Bad Business: Corporate Crime in Canada (Nelson: 1993) and Corporate Crime: Contemporary Debates (University of Toronto Press, 1995, co-edited with Dr. Frank Pearce). Her present research centres on the asymmetries of surveillance, comparing the monitoring of employees versus that of employers (“theft of time”); and the surveillance capabilities of traditional police forces against traditional criminality (“crime in the streets”, versus those of regulatory agencies against corporate criminality (“crime in the suites”). Recent publications include: “But They’re Not Real Criminals”: Downsizing Corporate Crime” (in B. Schissel & C. Brooks, eds., Critical Criminology in Canada . Halifax: Fernwood, 2008: 263-86); “Economic Crimes”, (in J. Minkes and L. Minkes, eds.,Corporate and White-Collar Crime. London: Sage, 2008: 39-60), “Safety Through Punishment?”, (in M. Beare, ed., Honouring Social Justice, Honouring Dianne Martin. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008) and “Accommodating Power: The “Common Sense” of Regulators”, Social and Legal Studies 18(2), 2008 (forthcoming).

Faculty website: http://www.queensu.ca/sociology/?q=people/faculty/full-time/sniderl

Queens University, Ontario, Canada, is also a known hangout of some serious AFCC propaganda — In looking up Ms. Snider (who may or may not be involved in such things), the same brochure has a large inset designed to honoring Nicholas Bala (search my blog) in association with AFCC.  He is a definite supporter of PAS theory — i.e., minimizing child & wife abuse, or reframing it as NOT a criminal, but a “relationship” issue, as much as possible.  “Coincidentally” the international organization AFCC has a wide membership among relationship counselors and another psychological sorts, plus a clos connection to the fathers’ rights (= mens’ rights) movement in general, no matter what they “say” about how it’s all about the children…
http://law.queensu.ca/alumni/queensLawReports/lawReports2008.pdf  Here he is in this brochure, being honored (photo visible at the link):

Professor Nicholas Bala is introduced as the recipient of the Stanley Cohen Distinguished Research Award by Bill Howe, a board member of the Association of Family and Conciliatory Courts, at its 45th Annual Conference in Vancouver on May 29, 2008.

BALA RECOGNIZED FOR CONTRIBUTIONS TO FAMILY AND DIVORCE LAW

On May 29, 2008, Bala received the Stanley Cohen Distinguished Research Award from the Association of Family and Conciliatory Courts (AFCC) in recognition of his outstanding work in family and divorce law. “I am deeply honoured by this recognition,” Bala said, “particularly in light of noteworthy contributions from previous winners.”

Bala became the first Canadian to win the award from the AFCC, an international organization of professionals involved in the family court system striving to empower families and promote healthier futures for children. Most of the award’s previous recipients were leading American researchers in the mental health field, including such scholars as Sanford Braver, Joan Kelly and Janet Johnston, whose work focused primarily on the effects of divorce on parents and children. . . .

In contradiction to the concept of “no-fault” divorce law…

As one of Canada’s leading family and children’s law scholars, Bala has a distinguished reputation for his innovative and traditional research methods and his diverse range of publications. Scholars in Canada and abroad frequently cite Bala, and Canadian lawyers and judges frequently quote his research. In its recent decision in R. v. D.B., the Supreme Court of Canada cited Bala’s work for the 25th time.

In addition to Bala’s traditional legal scholarship, much of his research draws from a variety of disciplines: he collaborates with psychologists, criminologists and social workers to address the problems children and families encounter within the justice system.

“I have not only been involved in consuming the research of social scientists about the justice system; I’ve helped to produce it,” Bala says. “My collaboration with mental health professionals and social scientists has allowed me to appreciate both the value—and the limitations—of their work for the justice system.”

Besides his interdisciplinary work with the Child Witness Project, Bala has been taking a closer look at how domestic violence is handled in the family-law arena. He has been working with three mental-health professionals {{Want to bet $100 they’re all AFCC members?  I could use a little extra cash to upgrade some of the blog….!}}} to produce a series of papers on this issue, and the group recently created a model to address the effects of family violence on the determination of child custody and access. **

**Jargon translation:   wife-beating is no reason to restrict a child who witnessed this having access to their biological father.  Let us do supervised visitation, etc.  — hence (in the US) HHS “Access/Visitation” funding, with help from the (also international) Children’s Rights Council, which developed the term “access” to replace the term “visitation.”   This model will be ADMINSTRATIVELY or PRACTICALLY begun (or has been already) and then other highly placed individuals (state by state in the US) will suggest — hey, why not make it a law?  (Example:  PA:  Commission on Justice Initiatives:  Changing the Culture of Custody).

The team’s article about their family-violence-assessment model, which was published in the most recent issue of the international journal Family Court Review, {{Co-produced with AFCC & Hofstra Univ. School of Law in NY}} is already being cited in a number of countries.

The Stanley Cohen Distinguished Research Award (Stanley Cohen being a principal in the development of AFCC) is Bala’s second major award in three years for his valuable research contributions. He won the Queen’s Prize for Excellence in Research in 2006 during an annual university-wide competition. For more information about this award, see “Nicholas Bala Wins Top University Research Prize” on page 2 of the 2007 issue of Queen’s Law Reports at http://law.queensu.ca/alumni/publications/lawReports2007.pdf

Last I heard, United State of America claims to be somewhat of a unique country, based on its Constitution, Bill of Rights, and reputation for freedom, right to trial by jury, protections of due process, etc. — people immigrate here for a better life.  We are labeled (or maybe were, not too long ago) the “leadership of the free world.”
So why this urgency to bring all our legal institutions — especially one dealing with families, and raising the next generations of children — into consonance with international standards, including socialist countries, countries such as the UK, which still maintain a Queen, a national religion, and until about 100 years ago, were about as imperialistic, colonizing and enslaving a country as could be found on the globe?  HUH?
And why is Ms. Melgar quoting someone who hangs out at a University which is known (at least as to family law) as an “AFCC safe harbor”?  Because she’s a feminist? California doesn’t have enough feminists to reference?    (The New Transparency group) (the Conversation:   Snider blurg:)

My major research interests lie in the intersection between knowledge, punishment and law. I have applied this in several substantive areas, in studies examining the poisoned water disaster in Walkerton, Ontario, the reception of knowledge claims on corporate crime, and the constitution of the punishable woman.

Experience

  • Professor of Sociology, Queen’s University – present

Education

  • Toronto University, B.A., M.A., Ph.D
Site “The Conversation” (Obviously I am just looking up Laureen Snider and wondering why she’s quoted in re: prosecution of a SF inbound sheriff):
OUR CHARTER
  • Give experts a greater voice in shaping scientific, cultural and intellectual agendas by providing a trusted platform that values and promotes new thinking and evidence-based research.
  • Unlock the knowledge and expertise of researchers and academics to provide the public with clarity and insight into society’s biggest problems.
  • Create an open site for people around the world to share best practices and collaborate on developing smart, sustainable solutions.
Not that it may be enforceable at this point, but I happen to live in a country where the underlying concept was NOT an “aristocracy of the experts” to solve social problems, but a government of “We the People” through institutions that limited any resurgence of the tyranny of religion, individual interests (including royalty from other countries), and, to the extent we have taxation, and pass laws, they are to come from our elected representatives, who are accountable to the people living here (i.e. ,citizens) — and are not to be imported laced with concepts NOT innate to the US, and for which it fought a serious “war for independence” — from Great Britain — in the 1770s!  ! !! (not a topic to be developed in this post, but there’s a lot more depth I’m learning these days about HOW we became a country of collective debt to an international banking cartel, etc. etc.)
 The matter at hand here has to do with an  official — appointed Sheriff – a government employee of the USA — not Canada.  have the discussion, but the prosecution, leadership and the dialogue around domestic violence advocacy groups here (mostly nonprofits which take some HHS funding, I’m fairly sure) is not an international matter — as pertains to should or should not it have been prosecuted…
 CONTINUING. . . . .  Bay Guardian article:
Snider argues that feminists and progressives have misidentified social control with police/governmental control. In other words, we are substituting one oppressor for another — and glossing over the fact that in the judicial system, poor people of color fare worse than white middle-class people. We have punted on (forward) the hard work education, and of shaping and reshaping men’s definitions of masculinity and violence, of the social acceptance of the subjugation of women, of violence against children. We have chosen to define success in the fight against domestic violence by women saved from horrible situations and incarceration rates for their abusers — rather than doing the difficult work of community and individual change necessary to prevent violence from happening in the first place
Perhaps Dr. Snider (who operates and was educated in Canada — exclusively — it seems, but shares through internet and other means (I don’t know) an international dialogue on certain issues of interest to her and them) is completely unaware of the heavily subsidized ‘Minnesota Program Development Fund,” the “Duluth Model,” the prevalence of the term “CCR” (COORDINATED COMMUNITY RESPONSE) in this country, thanks in great part to Ellen Pence, who, I note was college-educated also in Toronto:

Ellen Pence

Ellen Pence (1948 – January 6, 2012) was a scholar and a social activist. She co-founded the Duluth Domestic Abuse Intervention Project[1], an inter-agency collaboration model used in all 50 states in the U.S. and over 17 countries.[2] A leader in both the battered women’s movement and the emerging field of institutional ethnography, she was the recipient of numerous awards including the Society for the Study of Social Problems Dorothy E. Smith Scholar Activist Award (2008) for significant contributions in a career of activist research. . .

Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Pence graduated from St. Scholastica in Duluth with a B.A. She was active in institutional change work for battered womensince 1975, and helped found the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project in 1980.

She is credited with creating the Duluth Model of intervention in domestic violence cases, Coordinated Community Response (CCR), which uses an interagency collaborative approach involving police, probation, courts and human services in response to domestic abuse. The primary goal of CCR is to protect victims from ongoing abuse.[citation needed]

She earned her Ph.D in Sociology from the University of Toronto in 1996. She used institutional ethnography as a method of organizing community groups to analyze problems created by institutional intervention in families. She founded Praxis International in 1998 and was the chief author and architect of the Praxis Institutional Audit, a method of identifying, analyzing and correcting institutional failures to protect people drawn into legal and human service systems because of violence and poverty.[citation needed] Ellen pence died [RECENTLY] at the age of 63 , from breast cancer .

PRAXIS means “practices.”   Who is practiced upon?  (Sorry, this wasn’t brought before our voters — except it went through the US Reps House Appropriations Committee,  I guess. . . ..

Not before endorsing and propagating a system of educational institutions — taking public funding — based on social theory, and which have attracted a host of inappropriate misappropriations of public employees times, and which set up a built-in HIERARCHY — the exact OPPOSITE of what women, particularly mothers, leaving abuse need.  This hierarchy is a lose/lose situation for any person imagining he/she has enforceable, legal rights in the USA — as an INDIVIDUAL.   It sets up the hierarchy of the TEACHERS (for hire // mercenaries) versus the “TAUGHT.”

The social science THEORY that one can educate or train men out of violence is just taht — a theory.  It is also contrary to the american (USA) form of government, which is to expect people to keep an identifiable law, and maintain a fair process of assigning punishments for those who choose not to.  This means all people can be informed of WHAT their laws are — and leaves no room for speculations on the social  impact of father-absence, single-parenthood, or even violence against women — and then millions of $$ which the public (and private interests) fund to tinker with the demonstration projects each time they get it wrong.

Back to the C.W.Nevius article (top of post), which continues:

Witnesses save lives

“Most cases are not this public,” said Beverly Upton, executive director of San Francisco Domestic Violence Consortium. “But if anyone made this more difficult, it was Ross Mirkarimi. There was a lot of activity trying to silence the witness, and that doesn’t usually happen. What we know is that witnesses coming forward saves lives.”

Mirkarimi was initially charged with three misdemeanors related to domestic violence and eventually reached an agreement to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge of false imprisonment. Mayor Ed Lee also filed charges to permanently remove him from office.
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/03/30/BANI1NSJ36.DTL#ixzz1quqyOPjT

FYI, I do not live in San Francisco (some may wonder), but have lived in the area for over two decades, and worked frequently in the city and in surrounding counties — both during and after my “domestic violence” marriage.  I notice that whenver there’s a high-profile event, here is this SF DVConsortium and Beverly Upton being consulted for help.  I never got any help from them, nor did I get ANY help from the Family Violence Prevention Fund, although, they do throw a great conference, and how validating to know that domestic violence is a health risk (like, I didn’t know that?).  It did NOTHING to address the ongoing violence enabled by the family law system to any and all mothers who, after doing the right thing, but having for some reasons, very persistent Exes — are thereafter psychologically, economically, legally and in other ways tortured (if not extorted) — in the custody realm.

This group apparently could care less, so long as they get their funds and keep up the reputation for protecting women from violence – without addressing the land mines ahead of them.   SEE MY BLOG!  no one gave me a federal fund to publicize this, and apparently the more other groups immunize themselves from DV rhetoric, the better it is for BOTH pro and con grantseekers.  So, here — for a quick update — this “Consortium” consorts in getting public grants to continue their agenda.  I gather this is a progressive agenda because it’s under the umbrella of the (very large) TIDES Foundation, which also sponsored the nonprofit “Stop Family Violence” — which appears (best I can tell) to consist of a website, and one or two professionals who got to fly around to conferences nationwide (Irene Weiser, i forget who the other person was) and now is perhaps inactive, although the website is still up there.

Members of this agency

aka SFDVC and/or DVC) founded in 1982, is a network of seventeen domestic violence service agencies that come together with the goal of providing high quality, coordinated and comprehensive services to San Francisco’s victims of domestic abuse. {{ABUSE?  or VIOLENCE?  Make up your mind!!}}

The services of the individual agencies include emergency shelter, transitional housing, crisis lines, counseling, prevention programs, education and legal assistance. Services are available in the many different languages of San Francisco’s diverse populations. One of the main activities of the SFDVC is networking. SFDVC agencies share information, learn about issues that impact their work and coordinate their services and activities with a particular focus on public funding, specifically coordinating grant proposals and conducting advocacy/lobbying of government departments as to the importance of funding domestic violence services.

The SFDVC is a nonprofit organization and a project of the Tides Center. The SFDVC is led by its co-chairs and committees. The SFDVC recognizes that San Francisco is a diverse city and domestic violence is a problem in all communities regardless of ethnicity, race, class, physical ability, religion, age, immigration and economic status, sexual orientation and gender identity. 

Obviously this is important work — HOWEVER — notice the collective grants-obtaining clout they have?  That must be HOW there has been such coordinated and collective silence on the fathers’ rights grants and movement I report, and so have other UNsponsored INDIVIDUALS.  Do they teach women about to file a kickout order about the upcoming Access/Visitation grants (in place, $10 million a year since 1996), how the Federal Incentives to the Child SUpport Enforcement system include running demonstration grants on how to increase noncustodial (father) time with the children, and how if they go on welfare, they are quite likely to be ex-parte consolidated into a divorce action, and thrown to the family court wolves, whose funding is MUCH larger?

NO — not last I heard.

Do they say anything about the organization AFCC, which practically runs the local Family Courts, let alone the Family Court Facilitators’ offices where people NOT as well-off financially (probably) than Ms. Lopez will end up seeking remedies?  AFCC publishes most of the brochures available there — and (I checked in recent years) the coverage of domestic violence issues is highly diminished.  So, what does that say about women’s right to know and make an INFormeD decision about whether to confront their batterer (sometimes with a civil protective order — not even mentioned in these dialogues), or call the police and hope a criminal one is instated?

LASTLY (and that’s enough for today!), I wanted to also show the Mayor Ed Lee catering to the FUTURES WITHOUT VIOLENCE organization, which currently owns prime real estate (or owns the organization that owns the real estate) in the SF Praesidio.  Futures without Violence, indeed.  The antidote to tyranny in our country (whether by domestic individuals within their family walls, or outside them by public officials) is a balance of powers between (1) the government and (2) the people, and fair enforcement of crimes against the state which jeopardize the safety of the public — which domestic violence DOES, and there’s plenty of evidence in the form of innocent bystanders shot, businesses disrupted, as well as responding police officers.  We live in one of the more violent countries in the world, in many levels, and despite decades of advocacy by DV groups, their inherent demand for public funds to “coordinate services” and educate — the world, essentially — they are not open to criticism from the street level about this agenda.

TOO BAD – it’s here, it’s coming and I’m not going to stop, if I can help, this outrage.  I have one-third of my adult life thrown down this rabbit hole ,and the concept of betrayal is absolutely high.  MSM is owned, and is never going to tell the whole story.  More bloggers are needed — bloggers that cite their sources where possible, and make sure that this situation is no longer covered up, or specially framed when it comes time to renew the funding for the VAWA act and the counterintuitive simultaneous funding of the next round of fatherhood/marriage etc. grants.  No wonder this keeps going on, perhaps — our society is so stressed and compartmentalized, and has been already pre-trained to have their income taxes garnished, so garnishing wages for child support is a short step away.  No privacy, no safety, and no justice.  Just more debt!

My parting shot, I think:  The Mayor that wants Mirkarimi out references Futures without Violence.  Label this:  “You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours!”

Siana Hristova / The Chronicle
S.F. Mayor Ed Lee delivers the keynote address at a national domestic violence conference
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/03/30/BASJ1NSMGF.DTL#ixzz1qux42sTZ

Without mentioning Ross Mirkarimi by name, Mayor Ed Lee on Friday delivered an indirect rebuke of the man he suspended from the sheriff’s job after he pleaded guilty to a domestic-violence-related charge of false imprisonment of his wife.

The mayor made his remarks during a brief keynote address at a national conference on domestic violence under way in San Francisco sponsored by the Futures Without Violence organization.

Seizing on sentence

Mirkarimi was elected sheriff in November after serving seven years on the Board of Supervisors. He was sworn in to his new job on Jan. 8 and was arrested less than two weeks later for allegedly bruising his wife’s arm during a New Year’s Eve argument in front of their 2-year-old son. The district attorney charged him with misdemeanor domestic violence battery, dissuading a witness and child endangerment.

The new sheriff pleaded not guilty to those three counts, but on March 12, under a plea-bargain agreement, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor false imprisonment. He was sentenced to three years’ probation, weekly domestic violence intervention classes, and one day in jail with time served for when he showed up at the Hall of Justice for booking; he did not serve time behind bars.
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/03/30/BASJ1NSMGF.DTL#ixzz1qv2FUQhL

I have yet to find out a news article actually naming who is the provider of the weekly classes!  But this whole deal sure does give us a picture of how political the entire field is.  NOT TO MENTION — that once they get their mileage and some funds (he has to take those classes, right?) with the case, and the press — these programs that didn’t teach a county supervisor how to behave to his wife — and I’ll bet he probably approved some of the programs too — are going to continue, with MSM coverage while the private tragedies, ongoing, and far larger in scope, danger to the women involved, and near-lethal or lethal — surrounding the insane institution of the family courts — will continue, probably.  Talk about rocking the power structure to the center– if THAT story got out, I seriously doubt MSM (mainstream media) would take it!
They are right to suspend the guy.  Not that there aren’t others in the area that ought to lose their nonprofit standing for simply not profiting the public — like the huge Futures without Violence!
Full Name: FUTURES WITHOUT VIOLENCE FEIN: 943110973
Type: Public Benefit Corporate or Organization Number: 1648791
Registration Number: 077397
Record Type: Charity Registration Type: Charity Registration
Issue Date: 12/31/2005 Renewal Due Date: 5/15/2011
Registration Status: Current Date This Status: 5/16/2007
Date of Last Renewal: 9/23/2010
Address Information
Address Line 1: 100 MONTGOMERY STREET, PRESIDIO – MAIN POST Phone:
Address Line 2:
Address Line 3:
Address Line 4: SAN FRANCISCO CA 94129
Annual Renewal Information
Fiscal Begin: 01-JAN-01
Fiscal End: 31-DEC-01
Total Assets: $8,143,898.00
Gross Annual Revenue: $10,345,721.00
RRF Received: 25-MAR-02
Returned Date:
990 Attached: Y
Status: Accepted
Fast forward 10 years, some additional Annie E. Casey participation and of course the concept of “Fatherhood” as a tool to prevent domestic violence (see my blog), and an institute (downloadable trainings?) to promote that concept:
Fiscal Begin: 01-JAN-09
Fiscal End: 31-DEC-09
Total Assets: $26,157,567.00
Gross Annual Revenue: $11,614,069.00
RRF Received: 12-AUG-10
Returned Date:
990 Attached: Y
Status: Accepted
Fiscal Begin: 01-JAN-10
Fiscal End: 31-DEC-10
Total Assets: $36,603,585.00
Gross Annual Revenue: $17,118,149.00
RRF Received: 14-JUN-11
Returned Date:
990 Attached: Y
Status:
The extra $10 million in ASSETS between 2009 & 2010 is most likely the acquisition of the real estate at the Praesidio.  I dare you to look at their (rejected) tax return to the IRS, and figure out why it was rejected (letter uploaded to the same site).  this is the Office of Attorney General’s site, and anyone can search through it, and should:

(STATE CHARITABLE RETURN FOR 2009) FORM RRF-I INFORMATION REGARDING GOVERNMENT FUNDING STATEMENT 14 ART B, LINE 6

  • U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE OFFICE OF JUSTICE PROGRAM 810 7TH STREET NW, 5TH FLOO~ WASHINGTON, DC 20531 NEELAM PATEL, 202-353-4338  — AMOUNT   $2.9 million
  • U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES 370 L’ENFANTE PROMENADE, 6Tl FLOOR
  • WASHINGTON, DC 20447  — AMOUNT  $1.5 million
  • U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH DHUMAN SERVICES INDIAN HEALTH SERVICE 801 THOMPSON AVENUE ROCKVILLE, MD 20852 — AMOUNT $86K
  • NATIONAL COUNCIL OF JUVENIL! AND FAMILY COURT JUDGES P.O. BOX 8970 RENO, NV 89507  — AMOUNT $91K
  • OTHER GOVERNMENT GRANTS (whose?)  AMOUNT $30K
  • TOTAL GOVERNMENT FUNDING  $ 4,649,368
(that was year 2009)….
the heavy involvement of the US HHS and the NCJFCJ — which is a family court organization (and, the current head of the office of VAW, Susan D. Carbon, used to be president of the NCJFCJ, I heard) — ensures that no real critical analysis of the feminist backlash in the family court system is going to take place — that would be biting the hand that feeds them!
There were (year 2009) TEN (10) paid directors of this NONprofit — and their combined regular compensation was about $1.6 million, with Esta Soler’s being the largest salary ($234K & $71K “other”), and the lowest of any of the others being $112K.   If you add “other compensation” for all ten, the total is NEARLY $THREE MILLION  ($3 mil).
In addition, campaign /project manager professionals — $428,323….three individuals.
There are (moreover– see that tax returns), TWO real estate LLCs and ONE real estate “C-Corp” (an “Inc.”) with the word Praesidio in them, at the same street address (383 Rhode Island #304, SF) of the then-FVPF.  At least one of these is 100% owned by FVPF.
Futures without Violence is international in scope, but heavily supported — year after year (actually decade after decade it seems — I think it began ca. 1989) by US taxpayers, while being itself free from income tax (as a corporation) and investing in real estate.  GO FIGURE!  They are living “high on the hog” and running the show, while men, women and children around them continue to get molested, have their income, lives and assets SQUANDERED through ongoing litigation in the family law arena, which is funded in good part by similar corporations behind this monster DV agency.
I have heard Esta Soler speak, and she’s impressive.  What they have done is impressive.  However it doesn’t compensate for the intrinsic disparity of influence between this group — and actual mothers who need protection and help, and to keep their kids away from violent fathers — AND vice versa.
AND — in 2010 — they decided not to report their Schedule B — List of Contributors, including names and addresses (see amounts, above).  The notice was sent to the group in August 2011 — and the situation apparently has not yet been corrected.  Nor did they send in their annual $225 fee (notice also sent August 2011).  Perhaps this group is going to pull up roots, sell its real estate to a foreign-based corporation and simply stop dealing with the American law and order system entirely.
It should be looked into. It’s not too big to look into.   Why do we need a multimillion$$ NONprofit to run campaigns and things like “Coaching Boys into Men” — that’s the job of schools and parents.  take that money down and make better schools, or almost any situation might be preferable.
Publicize the actual LAWS against such violence on their sites and teach pastors, teachers, and others to report.  I reported to plenty of individuals in mandatory reporting positions during my marriage.  None of them, for the most part, did much.  They must have figured out it was someone else’s job.
Can you imagine running a ‘Batterers Intervention Class” for Ross Mirkarimi?  And can we imagine that a politician of this stature couldn’t convince anyone that he’s absorbed and believed the material?  There’s a LOT more than meets the eye to this case.  I’m glad he got suspended, not that this would have made him an inappropriate county supervisor or other political leader.  Just not sheriff!!

Maryland’s Family Court Expansion, AFCC Model, takes Unifying Symbols to a New Level: Paper, Cotton, Leather, Fruit, Wood, Iron…

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This post is PR on something I just discovered recently and, to be honest, am distressed enough about to follow up by phone with the leadership of some of the groups involved, asking they why these things should be happening statewide.  The dialogue illustrates what’s going on, but is a little complex, and unless you have an interest in monitoring the expansion and methods of expansion of the family law bureaucracy WITHIN or as an ADJUNCT to our court system, you may not want to go through it all.

I think there is some legitimacy — however widespread, commonplace, and entrenched this system currently is, and however expensive and status quo it has become — to a theory that the “Family Court Services” if not the “Family Courts” themselves (as it pertains to divorce and custody) — are illegitimate.  They are private enterprises posing as public ones, and servicing their funders, who as it happens, tend to occupy high places in (1) the Executive Branch of the United States Government (I’m talking HHS, DOJ in particular) and (2) the Corporate /tax-exempt foundation stratosphere — almost none of which is truly accessible to individuals who are coming through these courts, unless they already have prior involvement.

First of all, they are about as unbelievingly condescending and patronizing (‘move over, let us experts handle your family — give us your kid, etc.’) as it is possible for any human relationship to be, apart from some truly unhealthy (i.e., violent/abusive) ones.  They deal in force, and subterfuge when it comes to proliferating the program, and like any good, truly “disaster capitalism” enterprise, they deal with distressed populations, exploit them, and call that service.  I come from California, and preliminary expose on this was done courtesy one of the oldest and (not exactly being updated) sites around — but it still is up and still serves a purpose — Johnnypumphandle.com.

assn.gif (5213 bytes)  ”

Dedicated to Exposing Illegal and Immoral Practices in The Courts

… Particularly the Family Law System which includes the Courts, Attorneys, Family Services, Psychologists and Therapists,Visitation Monitors, Ad-Litems, Social Workers, Child Protection Agencies and all of the agencies that support these so-called professionals.

Collusion among individuals within the family law system takes place to extract assets from troubled parents. The system is designed to increase the wealth of the family law professionals at the expense and heartbreak of families. Corrupt practices abound.

For example, why does the “Los Angeles County Superior Court Judges Association” change its name to simply “Los Angeles County Superior Court” in its IRS filings? and what are they actually doing at their special events, including sporting events, and how do they manage to have (year 2010) a net loss of $10,000, being such smart judges (only revenue — membership dues, totaling $50K that year).?

ORGANIZATION NAME

STATE

YEAR

TOTAL ASSETS

FORM

PAGES

EIN

Los Angeles Superior Court CA 2010 $120,654 990EO 10 95-4663773
Los Angeles Superior Court CA 2009 $95,314 990EO 12 95-4663773
Los Angeles Superior Court CA 2008 $102,801 990EO 11 95-4663773
Los Angeles Superior Court Judges Association CA 2007 $87,134 990EO 9 95-4663773
Los Angeles Superior Court Judges Association CA 2006 $90,509 990EO 9 95-4663773
Los Angeles Superior Court Judges Association CA 2005 $70,106 990EO 8 95-4663773
Los Angeles Superior Court Judges Association CA 2004 $55,818 990EO 5 95-4663773

per “Johnny”

The Los Angeles Superior Court Judges Association is a good example of one of the latter Non-Profit organizations whose stated purpose is “promotion of judicial profession pursuant to section 501(c)(6)”. (see form 3500 – Exemption application). The Association boasts a budget of over $100,000 – none of which will be received from members dues {?} – and most of which will be funded by “Professional Education programs for the legal community”. Unlike most professional organizations, this organization was granted(?) the use of County premises, complete with facilities for it’s [sic] office space and management of it’s business within the County Court facilities at 111 North Hill Street.”

Copyright © Design Systems, Inc. All rights reserved. Last update 01/10/2010)

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Substance-Poor, Repetition-Rich: Parsing ~ Parent Coordination ~ Rhetoric ~ and some Organizations..(Publ. Dec. 14, 2011, updated (format) Oct. 30, 2017)

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POST TITLE IS: 

Substance-Poor, Repetition-Rich: Parsing ~ Parent Coordination ~ Rhetoric ~ and some Organizations..(Publ. Dec. 14, 2011, updated (format) Oct. 30, 2017) (WordPress-generated, case-sensitive shortlink ends “-WN”

My practice of adding borders and listing the post title with shortlink is more recent.

Currently this post is NOT listed on any Table of Contents (my lists only go as far back as Sept. 2012)…I see that many of the logos will not display, and that this post as written was about 10,000 words long. This update made only because a basic search on the blog for an organization I’m writing about again brought it up. (Update this time is only minimal format changes for easier reading; is not in detail and doesn’t include fixing broken links/missing logos, or more recent information on the organizations referenced).//LGH Oct. 30, 2017.


INTRO:

Overall, I seriously doubt that it’s possible to clean up or straighten up the family law system — at all, and I am utterly serious in saying this.  There is too much incentive for fraud, and too much need to “pay the mortgages” in the courthouses by ordering more services, and too little oversight and tracking of the funding.  There are too many public employees forming nonprofit corporations to franchise for-profit curricula (marriage, parent education, etc.) — in the old NonProfit/ForProfit combo.

There are too few tools in many states to track WHO is repeatedly forming corporations that go belly-up, only to have a partner or other person formerly on one board just go forth and from another one — in another state.   Many of these groups, as my last post showed, are membership organizations — membership is charged, conferences run, and we have some evidence from county payrolls or vouchers from court-connected professionals, that the public is billed to fund attendance at nonprofits whose ONE purpose is to expand their services.  Child support is one of the worst of these, but they come in all flavors.

Despite the bleak outlook — I still report and I am going to finish reporting on this field of Parent Coordination until it is CLEAR what the AFCC professionals’ intent is in establishing this field and, if possible, having it legitimized at the state level by establishing standards, or by mandate.

The Association for Family and Conciliation Courts runs many task forces at a time, as part of its strategic plan to expand (itself) and transform the “old” language of criminal law into more friendly-to-its-practitioners concepts.    One of them which they are taking VERY seriously in promoting — and I take VERY seriously in protesting — is Parenting Coordination.

Parents didn’t ask for this — it’s no grassroots movement, and from what I can tell how it’s been (1) advertised (2) pushed and (3) practiced — there’s no genuine NEED for it either.  For that matter, I see no historical record that parents as a sector (both male and female) asked for the family law system, either.

Why I’m addressing it — again:   

(1) AFCC PROMOTED IT – NOT PARENTS.  NO REAL NEED EXISTED, and SERIOUS ISSUES & OBJECTIONS AS THEY DID.

The LizLibrary lists a page of them, and towards the bottom, some legal opinions, too:  Parenting Coordination:  A Bad Idea

Here’s less than half the list — and so far I agree with ALL of them.  Thank you, Liz (Kates, the FL Family Law attorney, not Richards, of NAFCJ.net)
© 1996-2011 argate.net        frcp:

  • Parenting coordination is an inappropriate delegation of the judicial function
  • Parenting coordination is an impediment to court access
  • Parenting coordination is a denial of due process
  • Parenting coordination violates privacy
  • The parenting coordinator concept encroaches on family liberty interests
  • Parenting coordination represents arbitrary dictate by a person, in denigration of rule of law
  • Parenting coordination is a make-work role newly invented by psychology trade promotion groups
  • No studies indicate parenting coordinators make good decisions
  • No studies indicate parenting coordination improves families’ lives or child wellbeing.
  • Nothing qualifies a stranger to make family decisions for other people
  • Nothing qualifies a mental health professional to interpret a court order or legal document
  • Nothing qualifies a lawyer to play at being an unlicensed, unregulated therapist for hire
  • Nothing qualifies any third party to “fill in the gaps” in someone else’s contract
  • There is no definition of what constitutes a successful parenting coordination
  • Parenting coordination does not, in the long run, alleviate court docket congestion
  • It creates additional issues and leaves the door open for return trips to resolve them
  • Parenting coordination provides a new forum for squabbling over petty disputes
  • Parenting coordination is an additional expense that many can ill afford
  • Parenting coordination enables one parent to spend the other’s funds
  • Parenting coordination is time-consuming and tedious
  • Parenting coordination is not confidential
  • Parenting coordination constitutes continuous government discovery, 4th Amendment
  • Parenting coordination constitutes continuous discovery by each parent into the affairs of the other
  • Parenting coordination can never be “voluntary” because it implements unwanted court orders
  • Parenting coordinators demand that the parties sign “consents” that give up constitutional rights
  • Some have demanded that parties give up the right to go to court, contact police, or involve their lawyers
  • They are hired or appointed under shadow of the threat of court sanctions or loss of custody
  • They are agreed to by parties ignorant of the repercussions, in fear, out of funds, or overwhelmed
  • Parenting coordination does not result in increased family well-being
  • Parenting coordination does not make children happier, healthier, or better adjusted
  • Parenting coordination is not therapy but coercion backed by the state’s police power
  • Parenting coordinators tend to be hostile to, and at odds with attorney-client relationships
  • They align with GALs and other court appointees in a pretext of “focus on the children”
  • They encroach on parental-child relationships and decision-making
  • They undermine the parental authority children require for a sense of security and well-being
  • Instead of at least one authoritative parent, children have no authoritative parent
  • Petty tyrants place a premium on the perception of who is cooperating with them
  • Cooperation with the parenting coordinator is court-ordered and
  • They alone decide if a parent is “cooperating” with them

From the same page, a case “Parenting Coordinator Out of Control” — and I have to note that it’s an appeal from an order at the FL (presumably 20th) Circuit Court Level bearing Judge Hugh Starnes‘ name!

The Hon. Hugh Starnes showed up in yesterday’s post, where I was simply blogging an AFCC judge, and also his nonprofit in FL with the initials AFLP (logo on the post).  I also happen to know he was quite active in FL-AFCC Chapter establishment, which seemed to have the primary agenda of getting parenting coordination passed in Florida.  They have since succeeded, I believe, too.
Like I keep saying — sometime others will acknowledge — parenting coordinators are themselves pushy, and AFCC pushed Parenting Coordination, in fact they are one set of bullies when it comes to getting THEIR priorities into practice, then law – citing it’s already in practice anyhow.
This is primarily what AFCC does.  From the organization’s point of view, this is phrased as “innovative” and “helping” and “problem-solving.”  The problem (sic) is always the recalcitrant parents, and the UNFORTUNATE vestiges of separation of powers (legal/judicial/executive branch) and little details like confidentiality in a lawsuit, and legal restraints.
Here’s a link to Parentcoordination.com’s complaint about the legal limits part – and their plan of PC as an end-run around those limits!   {{It looks like I didn’t post that link, or it wasn’t saved to final… unless it’s shown in the DVLeap 2010 brief.}}

“The Court’s parenting coordinator orders unconsitutionally delegate judicial power and violate due process… The Special Master Order’s requirement that Appellant pay for the parenting coordinators to whom she objects violates law and public policy… The Special Master Order requiring Appellant to waive her medical privilege violates her statutory and constitutional rights to privacy…”

AFCC could care less.  They DEMANDED it and are still finishing up trying to get this mandated in every single United State.

  •  Even the brother of the Marriage Promotion President, the “Family” family, George Bush — as Governor of Florida, Jeb Bush, FL (2004) had the sense to object based on sound principles.  A newly formed (probably for this purpose) chapter of AFCC strategized, lobbied, publicized, practiced, and finally managed to ram it through, over his veto.  It only slowed them down slightly.

June 18, 2004   

Ms. Glenda E. Hood Secretary of State Florida Department of State

By the authority vested in me as Governor of Florida, under the provisions of Article III, Section 8, of the Constitution of Florida, I do hereby withhold my approval of and transmit to you with my objections, Committee Substitute for Senate Bill 2640, enacted during the 36th session of the Legislature, convened under the Constitution of 1968, during the Regular Session of 2004, and entitled:

An act relating to Parenting Coordination. . .

Committee Substitute for Senate Bill 2640 authorizes courts to appoint a parenting coordinator when the court finds the parties have not implemented the court-ordered parenting plan, mediation has not been successful, and the court finds the appointment is in the best interest of the children involved.

 

  • He lists 5 objections, two of which clearly recognize that it in effect allows a parent coordinator to function as both judge and jury of parents’ or children’s rights, and one of which is that it fails to protect victims of domestic violence.   I also note from the language that it looks like a Committee (not the general legislature) attempted to have this substitute for an existing Senate Bill. . . . . 

(2) The “Termini/Boyan Factor” —

  • The People fixed on training parent coordinators have a terrible track record when it comes to staying incorporated(I found another one today — Seminars for Advanced Interdisciplinary Family Professionals, or “SAIF.”  Formed in 2006, it’s already behind in its filings, in the state of Indiana. And it appears that, again, a nonprofit/for-profit combo, originating not with litigants, but with the professionals, was set up to give (again) some family law attorneys the right to crow about their own parent coordination training seminars they helped run themselves.  By and large, that seems to be the situation in Indiana — which it seems New Hampshire liked a lot, too. Termini/Boyan are Georgia/Pennsylvania — but same general idea.

(3) The language of “parent coordination” is impoverished and repetitive.

Here’s an example, from a family law attorney, a bona-fide certified one  (although the nonprofit membership she cites all over is anything but “bona-fide” when it comes to filing charitable returns in the home state!)

It’s even from an Amicus Brief (I THINK it got filed, although this isn’t the stamped version). Actually, this is where the title to my post came from:

 

CASE NO. C064475

SUPERIOR COURT CASE NO. 34-3009-80000359

IN THE COURT OF APPEAL FOR THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

THIRD APPELLATE DISTRICT

__________________

RANDY RAND, ED.D. Plaintiff and Appellant, v. BOARD OF PSYCHOLOGY, Defendant and Respondent. __________________

BRIEF OF AMICUS CURIAE

ASSOCIATION OF CERTIFIED FAMILY LAW SPECIALISTS __________________

Face sheet as posted at CaliforniaParentingCoordinator.com (using link from this 12/14/2011 post).

[Three images, inside blue borders, added in 2017 update.  See also their list Table of Authorities].

 

In the statute of authorities for this brief, bearing the name “Leslie Ellen Shear” and “Stephen Temko” (although the certificate of interested parties form bears the name Shear, and is dated 1/27/2011), after the legal and rules of court list, comes:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table of Contents from Amicus Brief (source url shown on gray window-frame at top of image).

 

 

 

“Treatises, Law Reviews and Other Authorities” – and on reading it, I see it quotes, among others:

  • The nonprofit ACFLS (which she’s head of Amicus Brief Committee on, or was)
  • AFCC itself (at least twice)
  • A host of people, known to be AFCC professionals anyhow, for those who pay attention — such as Ahrons, Coates, Deutch, Greenberg, Kelly, and who knows about some of the others.  These quotations include those from the AFCC publication, Family Court Review (joint with “Hofstra Univ. School of Law”) and AFCC newsletters, etc.
  • Herself, like 3 times, in:
    • Shear (2008) In Search of Statutory Authority for Parenting Coordinator Orders in California: Using a Grass-roots, Hybrid Model Without an Enabling Statute 5 Journal of Child Custody 88…………………………………………..5, 18, 25  (cited on page 5, 18 & 25).

(I’m also adding this quote in 2017 update, from the Amicus Brief):

ACFLS’s purposes in appearing as amicus are to protect and perfect the parenting coordination service model in California family courts, discuss the implications of the issues raised in this case for the future of parent coordination in California, and address the implications of those issues for other family court appointed neutrals including but not limited to child custody evaluators4, minors’ counsel appointed per Fam. Code §3150 et seq., mediators, therapists, members of collaborative family law teams, and other court appointed or connected quasi-judicial dispute resolution professionals.

In other words, to protect her own kind….

 

Note title — trying to legislate parenting coordination.

Another set of professionals tried to write “Kids Turn” into law around 2002, right? (see my “Kicking Salesmanship Up a Notch post.”) then-Governor Gray Davis (properly!) vetoed even the version of it put out which didn’t overtly say “Kids’ Turn” on its face.

So here’s a sample section of this Amicus:

On page 4, quoting AFCC person Greenberg (whose writing I also ran across) cites who came up with the idea, vaguely characterized as:

In 1994, the concept of parenting coordination was spawned by a concerned group of professionals in California and Colorado who realized that some high conflict families remained chronically mired in conflict and required something different. . . For these families, the traditional tried and true approaches to containing familial conflict such as litigation, mediation, forensics, and therapy had not worked. Thus, the concept of parenting coordination was conceived as a different and needed dispute resolution intervention.

(Tried and True?  [is that really an appropriate phrase for use in an amicus brief?]

Try “Tried and found seriously wanting.”  Don’t believe me?  Look here.  I’ve already mentioned the Seal Beach (CA) massacre enough times, so here’s one fresh off the press — like YESTERDAY, in Florida.  Actually, it seems there’s an acquiescent mother in this one: even after Dad murdered the son, the surviving children (including one witness to that murder) miss their Daddy.  And they shouldn’t even be supervised, but be able to go to events like church, sports, etc.

Sounds like perhaps this is a stepfather (or second family) situation here, judging by age of the children.  And the shooter was a retired police officer!

Dad accused of killing son wants custody rights to surviving kids; judge lets him have unsupervised contact (Orlando, Florida)

POSTED: 5:56 pm EST December 13, 2011
UPDATED: 6:45 pm EST December 13, 2011

ORLANDO, Fla. — A former Orlando police officer accused of killing his son was back in court, arguing for custody rights to his other children. 

Timothy Davis Sr. won a victory of sorts Tuesday when a judge granted him the ability to pick up his younger children from school, including his 9-year-old daughter who authorities said witnessed the killing.

The retired police officer is accused of shooting his son, 22-year-old Timothy Davis Jr., to death at their Apopka home in what he said was self-defense after his son attacked him, injuring his knee in October.

Here’s another involving 3 children, and a custody hearing, plus prior assaults on the child and wife.

Dad managed to get himself shot (to death) after apparently attacking a state trooper.  I do not call this ‘tried and true.”  This was an American military, married in Germany, but the divorce action  appears to be HERE. He also was Marine Corps.

Here’s one from Texas; 40 year old father, who apparently had custody? (or certainly unsupervised visitation), emails nude pictures of his 12 year old daughter.   This man was living with his mother who, thankfully, was honest enough to do something about her pervert son, although somehow the courts weren’t alert to this in custody decisions:

by KHOU.com staff

khou.com
Posted on December 8, 2011 at 8:58 PM

KATY, Texas – A 40-year-old father is facing charges for allegedly distributing nude photos of his 12-year-old daughter online.

According to court documents, the suspect was living with his daughter at his mother’s house in Katy when the offenses occurred.

Investigators said that in August of 2011, the suspect’s mother found emails sent from the suspect’s gmail account that contained nude images of children.   Some of those images were of the suspect’s daughter, the grandmother said.

Sorry to bring up this very unpleasant reality-check, but when in Amicus Brief a parent-coordinator pusher talks about previously tried methods that work — the definition of “works” or “tried and true” apparently / generally just means “tried, sometimes resulting in death, physical or sexual abuse of minors post-separation, or having minor children showing up in child pornography in father’s possession.”  All of these were from December 2011 news articles, only.

Keep these incidents for a point of reference while I quote from p.12, a whole chapter on how parent coordinators have such difficult parents to deal with, “poor them”:

 

III. Parenting Coordinators Work With the Most Difficult Family Court Population – Those Most Prone to Assert Grievances and Challenge Decisionmakers

… cases are usually referred to parenting coordination because they are chronically litigious and difficult to manage.** These parents have often had several attorneys, evaluators, and mediators — professional hopping and shopping is rampant. Their court files are thick with motions, court appearances, and allegations of wrongdoing by the parents.

Coates, Deutsch et al. (2004) Parenting Coordination for High-Conflict Families 42 Fam. Ct. Rev. 246, 252

**Difficult-to manage parents are the bread and butter of the family court.  They are the income producers.  Assigning them to parent coordination is yet one more source of income for the professionals, taken from either the parents, or (looks like there’s some effort to make even broke parents participate in this too — AFCC-CA has a workshop or presentation, on the 2012 hearing on this).

Perhaps the professionals in question should re-think the business of “managing parents” to start with.

So, the opening quote to this chapter is from two long-time AFCC professionals (Coates/Deutsch) in an AFCC publication?, although it’s only 2004, using an AFCC-originated concept and term, “high-conflict families” (although I hear Bill Eddy now says they are high-conflict individuals — see my post on “yet another AFCC wet dream.” and his High-conflict Institute….)

The child custody cases referred to parenting coordinators are the most complex, acrimonious, difficult and demanding cases. Most parents regain their perspective and bearings within two years of separation, and do not need this kind of intensive and ongoing service model. Parents who continue to re- turn to court with enforcement and modification requests after completing co- parenting educational programs,* and after a child custody evaluation are can- didates for parenting coordination,

* perhaps this speaks to the quality of the co-parenting educational programs, more than the parents.

* or perhaps they are pissed at being forced to take co-parenting classes to start with, not mentioning affected if they also have to pay.

Parents who need a PC intervention are typically a special group for whom the passage of time has not reduced the rage and angry behaviors of at least one if not both parents.

A casual dismissal of whether it’s just one — or both — parents here.  We KNOW that many of these cases — not just some — are in fact cases involving danger, abuse, and etc.   These cases do NOT belong in family court at all — but they are there because of greed of professionals, and because of the fatherhood movement (backlash to feminism) that incentivizes and insists that single motherhood is bad for kids.  For that matter, even if Mom remarries happily, it’s still supposedly bad for the world if biological father isn’t in his kids’ life.

In short — Ms. Shear and Mr. Temko (whoever drafted this) — are, with their colleagues — unable to literally distinguish between one parent and another when discussing “parents” in front of others who have some privilege (like a statutory justification) or grant to give them.

BUT — their own handbooks, and some appellate cases already involving parenting coordination, show clearly that they are QUITE able to distinguish one parent from another, and not only do, but literally plan how to, target mothers, specifically, for badmouthing and possible intervention in the form of getting the kids away from her.  (I have two links to parent coordination handbooks on this post, you can check them out.).

The 10–20% of parents who remain in entrenched and high conflict two to three years after separation/divorce are significantly more likely to have severe personality disorders and/or mental illness (Johnston & Roseby, 1997).

You can’t see it here, but on the pdf it shows:  in this quote, we have a triple-layer AFCC site.  I believe Johnston is probably Janet Johnston (AFCC Board, or was).  Kelly, (below) who’s being quoted in the section, if it’s Joan B. Kelly, has been called the “grande dame” of AFCC and mediation promotion in the family law courts.  She runs a Northern California Mediation Center, and obviously publishes too.   And Shear is AFCC.  So — if so — that represents:

AFCC Shear quotes AFCC Kelly quoting AFCC Johnston, as to parent coordination, which is an AFCC idea.  (this is FAR more common than most people — who are less obsessive about looking things up than me — realize.  I have labored through some pretty detailed writings (NYState) where when they ran out of ideas, they simply restated them, and I literally read ALL the footnotes too, most of which were “ibid.”   

Understanding the characteristics of parents with severe borderline, dependent, narcissistic, and antisocial personality disorders, why these parents react so strongly to rejection and loss, how the child is used in attempts to re-stabilize their functioning and punish the other parent, and how personality disorders are exacerbated by stress, conflict and the adversarial system will facilitate more effective work with these difficult clients.

Kelly (2008) Preparing for the Parenting Coordination Role: Training Needs for Mental Health and Legal Professionals 5 Journal of Child Custody 140,149-150

I don’t know how to state this clearly enough.  The difficulty any professional has — who by definition holds an option to quit the profession (which they chose) in dealing with a ‘difficult client” is no comparison with the difficulty of dealing — year after year thanks to policies — with an “ex” who has threatened to kidnap or kill, who has beaten one before, or who may be and/or has molested children, possibly one’s own (dep. on the case) before.   Suppose the shoe was on the other foot?  Again, if professionals don’t like the difficulty they have an option — find another line of work.

But thanks to their insistence on THIS line of work, i.e., at public AND private expense, and explicit danger to the communities — almost no parent — and I’m going to say mother, specifically– can actually get free from real criminals they’ve had children with, even when he’s already in jail.

I know of one case where the person has already done time in an unbelievably severe situation, and this mother/daughter who already went through hell — is being stalked again.  Until she’s safe, I’m not naming names, but once she is/they are, I will – because this case was high-profile and has been in the news.

One point of view is dealing with comfort, and potential burnout, in the performance of one’s duties that have internationally networked, federally-funded, county-judicial-level endorsed, and more — support groups.  The other is of staying alive, housed, and after that, functional and employed at all.

If one continues to read the Amicus, it continues to complain and blame.  The next quote by Shear is of Shear.  Here’s a little further on in the Amicus:

Parenting coordination is a very intrusive model, inserting state authority into the daily family lives of parents and children. With those intrusive powers comes a duty to exercise restraint, discretion and wisdom.

This work often creates the perfect storm. Parenting coordinators struggle to avoid being triangulated into the family’s conflicts.

Well, they triangulated themselves in there to start with, intentionally!   Which shows a lack of:   “restraint, discretion, and wisdom” per se.

From page 18 (“just one more”!) – This chapter complains that California hasn’t legislated parenting coordination by stipulation (i.e., authorizing it by force)  yet:

The only thing that is clear about appointment of parenting coordinators in California is that family courts are without jurisdiction to make them without a stipulation. Moreover, no published case has upheld orders resulting from a stipulated appointment of a parenting coordinator.

The quote from Greenberg in this Amicus acknowledges that professionals in California & Colorado (two hotspots of family law leadership; Center for Policy Research/Jessica Pearson et al. are in Denver) “spawned” the concept.  Or rather, it “was spawned” — we can’t name an individual father, so perhaps it was a sort of psychological gang-rape that produced the idea (just kidding).  Unlike “collaborative law” which actually names a father, “Stu Webb” out of MN. . ..      And that this began in the 1990s.

We are now in 2011.  Perhaps it’s time to admit that it’s a bad idea to start with; if even in California — where AFCC originated — they can’t get it into law!

The text continues — and understanding that I don’t know the underlying case, have not read the entire brief and am not an attorney, I’m to add a comment to the next section:

Of course, courts have no power to modify statutes. Statutes prescribe and proscribe what courts may do.

Damn right they do! On the other hand, has that really slowed down AFCC initiatives, has it?  I think there’s been a track record of resounding success, if getting around constitutional and statutory limits pending changing the statutes to accommodate more income streams to court-connected (or formerly court-connected, like retired judges) professionals… is what’s intended.

The California Constitution (art. VI, § 22) prohibits the delegation of judicial power except for the performance of subordinate judicial duties. A trial court lacks either statutory or inherent power to require the parties to bear the cost of a special master’s services, even where it may have the authority to make the appointment. (People v. Superior Court (Laff) (2001) 25 Cal.4th 703)

The Court of Appeal reversed trial court orders delegating authority over the visitation schedule to a child custody evaluator, requiring one of the parents to participate in psychotherapy and requiring that all future custody mat- ters be heard before the same bench officer in In re Marriage of Matthews (1980) 101 Cal.App.3d 811, 816–817 because there was no statutory authority supporting such a delegation.

Just GUESSING here, but perhaps if over a 21-year period (in one state), it’s still being stated that there are Constitutional limits on delegating Judicial power, and three years later the Governor of Florida (Jeb Bush) brings it up in a reason for vetoing a parent coordination stipulation — there just MIGHT be a good reason!   Parent Coordination is hardly an Occupy San Francisco (or anywhere else in California) grassroots protest or demand, is it, either?

We’re third generation fatherhood programs out here, we are also probably at least second-generation post-TANF (1996), post fatherhood (i.e., about 15-16 years since they passed), and perhaps– just perhaps — the last thing this state needs is more ideas originating from this nonprofit and all its collaborators in therapeutic jurisprudence great ideas.

Perhaps — just perhaps — it’s a good thing if constitutional and statutory limits on out-sourcing the judicial function mean something around here, for a change! Be content with what you got so far, as authorized by access/visitation (three categories of potential program fraud enabled) and all the marriage promotion money too, plus lots of the nonprofits — like ACFLS — not even bothering to report into the state Registry of Charitable Trusts (OAG) anyhow!

(REASON 4)

(4)

Moreover  — like most AFCC promotions — the language promoting parent coordination continues to refuse to think or talk in terms of legal rights to INDIVIDUALS as the Declaration of Independence asserted, which helped kickstart the USA, claims they are.   The language of parent coordination is continually pluralized, or group-talk.  It does not, really, acknowledge that a person could be a member of a family (like “parent” “father” or “mother”) and yet really have — and deserve — equal standing as an individual in any matter, before the law.

Here’s an example from ParentCoordinationCentral.com (Termini/Boyan site).  These are the supposed GOALS OF PARENT COORDINATION:

  1. Educate parents regarding the impact of their behaviors on their child(ren)’s development.

    [supports my thesis that AFCC members are often frustrated teachers.  They want to teach EVERYONE, and if people don’t agree, they are clever about figuring out ways to force this, and be paid for it, too.]
  2. Reduce parental conflict through anger management, communication and conflict resolutions skills. 
    [increasing the expense of divorce, treating parents like kids, undermining judicial authority, & due process, and invading one’s privacy sure will “reduce parental conflict”!! . .. And I haven’t even got (this post anyhow) to the training manual which has an openly hostile attitude towards mothers, it’s unbelievable).
  3. Decrease inappropriate parental behaviors to reduce stress for the child.
    [goes with AFCC goal of switching from a legally defined set of prohibited behaviors to an arbitrary, subjective, and personalized version of what is appropriate or inappropriate parental behavior.   Instead, how about just accept the basic definitions in the law, and as to court orders, compliance with them?]
  4. Work with parents in developing a detailed plan for issues such as discipline, decision-making, communication, etc.
     [Good Grief! — Go have your own children, and raise them — well.  Let’s see what fine examples they are, then parents can judge FREELY whether Mr. , Ms. & Mrs. Parent Coordinators are competent to make these plans.  I mean — the concept is ridiculous!  What about various cultures and family values, so long as they are not child abuse, domestic violence, or otherwise illegal?] [Even then it probably wouldn’t be a comparable situation, because the psychologists involved with the court, and AFCC professionals can usually drum up plenty of high-paying business, whereas a lot of the parents they are dealing with probably, by the time they are on the scene, absolutely cannot.]
  5. Create a more relaxed home atmosphere allowing the child to  adjust more effectively with the new family structure.
    [You want to have a more relaxed home atmosphere with children/  Again, go have your own and show it to us.  Then we can, awestruck by your competence – – and if we want to — copy it!]
  6. Collaborate with professionals involved with the family in order to offer coordinated service.
    [that’s closer to the real reason for it — more business referrals to colleagues]
  7. Monitor parental behaviors to ensure that parents are fulfilling their obligations to their child while complying with the  recommendations of the Court.
    [Children need due process, and they need an active, and respected Bill of Rights, for when they grow up.  One purpose of the Bill of Rights was to keep snoops out of one’s private business, so long as that business didn’t ramble over into the criminal arena.   It’s called LIFE, LIBERTY and PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS.  How can one pursue anything with the thought police on one’s heels?. . . . .
    Anyone who’s trying to function as a parent coordinator, and talking about children’s needs constantly (to justify it) apparently doesn’t comprehend what long-term dedication to one’s family AND country entails.  It entails respecting its laws.  I have before blogged an SF-area parent coordinator and family law attorney, who posted on his own site that the Constitution needs to be scrapped and rewritten, why revere it like Christians revere their Bible (guess he’s not one, and doesn’t understand how few Christians actually practice what’s in their Bible — or Constitution — to start with…)]
  • The NH “Parent Coordinators” Association of 2009 “FAQs” suggest a benefit is:
  • Q. What are the benefits of Parenting Coordination?

Parenting Coordination offers a much better way of resolving parenting plan issues than returning to court. And the resolution comes much faster than waiting for a court date and then the court decision. The Parenting Coordinator educates the parents about the harm to the children of hostility between parents, mediates issues as they arise, and if the parents are unable to resolve minor issues, makes the decision.

As ever, when selling their services, AFCC professionals see themselves as the mature adults on the scene, and the parents as a “plural,” and refuse to assign responsibility where it’s perhaps due.  They seem to utterly lack curiosity in fact-finding as to that matter.  This is understandable, because they deal in “psychology” more than law– which is the culture of the association.  While two individual parents are often involved, in the marketing prose, it’s always “the parents” v. “the helping professionals”

However, once in the door, and in practice — then they are quick to blame ONE parent, often the mother, and recommend severe intervention, often removing of contact with the children to counter supposed “alienation.”   In other words, they are hypocrites — professing neutrality and to be helping, but planning in advance (in this case) to do harm to one gender — the female, should she as a parent (mother) counter them.

I blogged this earlier, but again (from the same site) — here is their “sample” report from the handbook:

Handbook

A handbook for the purpose and practice of parenting coordination prepared by PCANH.

 Parts of this were credited (fn1 inside) to “Families Moving Forward, Inc.” in Indiana.  This is a nonprofit formed in 2005, EIN# 432074631 with principal listed c/o “Gloria K. Mitchell.”

So of course I looked this person up — she is a Rising Star Super Attorney, member of National Association of Counsel for Children, and works in a four-woman firm.  The nonprofit, however, is categorized as “exempt — earning under $25,000).  website’s “Divorce and Parenting Research Links” is typical, plus a direct link to the Children’s Rights Council” (hover URL).  CRC is pretty big in Indiana…  Six years after passing the bar, Ms. Mitchell was on the Executive Committee of Family Law Section of Indiana Bar Assoc., and chaired it in 2005.   The articles of incorporation show it’s a 501(c)4 (not “3”) and by address its place of business is another law firm in Noblesville, Indiana:  Holt, Fleck & Romini.  If the image (showing org.’s purpose) doesn’t show, it’s viewable for free on the site below.

Entity Name Type Entity Type City / State
FAMILIES MOVING FORWARD, INC. Legal Non-Profit Domestic Corporation INDIANAPOLIS, IN

Gloria K. Mitchell, and the four attorneys in the law firm, 
Though only incorporated in winter (February) 2005, by summer (July) 2005,  Indiana, “Families Moving Forward”** already had a “Parent Coordination Committee” and presented the following report in this context:

Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum

3rd Annual Family Law Summer Institute

and Family ICO Training Session July 28-29, 2005*

 *Note:  the Nonprofit to present this was incorporated 2/14/2005, in time for this, 3rd Annual Family Law Summer Institute agenda (see link) doesn’t show anything about parent coordination, although certainly it could’ve happened.  Law firm page for Ms. Mitchell notes that she was “Executive Committee of the “Family Law Section” 1994-2005 and its chair in 2004-2005.     So it would make sense that her nonprofit would have a good shot at presenting at that summer institute.
I note that at Ms. Mitchell’s office, one of her associates began as Parent Coordinator in 2006.
Another very smart attorney with stellar credits is Amy Stewart  (valedictorian of her law class) is president of this nonprofit (FMF):  notice also collaborative law emphasis, plus an AFCC affiliation.   In 1999 she had an article published on “Covenant Marriage:  Legislating Family Values”  Good summary of the issues of religiosity in marriage by a UK author, here  Actually, it’s a good summary and a timely read of marriage/divorce, and role of rising religiosity (UK/America) in the mix.
But it was a search for “Families Moving Forward, Inc.” that brought her name up.
Here’s Ms. Stewart’s bio (notice “Collaborative Law”); she works at Bingham McHale, LLP, a large firm with locations in 3 Indiana counties.  She is a partner.

Amy concentrates her practice in matrimonial and family law matters. She was one of the first Indiana attorneys trained  in collaborative law, and she has been instrumental in introducing the approach in Indiana. She has practiced collaborative law since 2007, has attended several conferences of the International Association of Collaborative Professionals,* and has been trained by collaborative law founder Stuart Webb. In addition, Amy also practices traditional litigation.   

*Readers probably may not remember, so I’ll remind us.  the “IACP” is another incarnation, membership association — out of many — formed by AFCC-type professionals, as you can see by the description:

iacp,collaborative law,collaborative practice,collaborative divorce,international academy of collaborative professionals

ACP is the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals, an international community of legal, mental health and financial professionals working in concert to create client-centered processes for resolving conflict.

I probably blogged it, too.  I remember looking up the various websites, corporate registrations, etc.   Here’s their About Us/History narrative.  I notice a good chunk of it (after inspiration by “Stu Webb” in MN) took form in the Northern California family court association nonprofit factor, aka the SF Bay Area, including Oakland (East Bay) and other well-known cities:

In May of 1999, the first annual AICP [=American Institute of Collaborative Professionals] networking forum was held in Oakland, California. The following year, a meeting was held in Chicago to discuss the state of Collaborative legal practice across the country. The nearly 50 practitioners who attended this meeting agreed that AICP should serve as the umbrella organization for our rapidly-growing movement. At the same time, they recognized that since Collaborative Practice was also developing exponentially across Canada, the organization needed a broader, more inclusive name and mission. Thus the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals was born in late 2000, officially changing its name in 2001.

The Collaborative Review has been published continuously since May, 1999. The work begun by initial editors Jennifer Jackson and Pauline Tesler. . . 

Jennifer Jackson (FYI, I’ve never met, spoken to, or dealt with her in court) is kind of branded in my mind as having helped start up Kids’ Turn (SF):

FYI — here is another Super Lawyer, high-profile, longstanding success.  Her “about” page lists many accomplishments. Notice which comes first; notice also the variety of terms which are basic to the field:  I’ll bold them:

About Jennifer Jackson

Before becoming a family lawyer in 1985, Jennifer Jackson was an illustrator and photographer, raising three children.

A LITTLE LOCAL COMMENTARY relating to this Super-Productive/Super Attorney and her many Nonprofits:  

I know artists, including photographers and illustrators.  It’s not that easy to make a living at; this speaks of either a good prior divorce settlement, (or not marrying) or some substantial education somewhere along the line, undergrad plus law school.  That’s quite a set of accomplishments, but I don’t think represents an indigence.  See Resume:

  • BA with Honors in 1966, became family lawyer (passed bar?)
  • 1985, with Professor’s Assistanceships (in law school) on child-related and mediation topics.  Maybe I can assume that almost 20 year gap is called “Mom” and “Wife” time.
  • In 1987, she helped found Kids’ Turn and was simultaneously involved in PTA Board at “Campolindo High School” where her kids probably attended.   Campolindo is — well, its site describes it well:

“Located in the hills east of the University of California, Berkeley, Campolindo serves the professionally-oriented and well-educated suburban communities of Moraga and Lafayette. Students, teachers and parents work together to provide a positive climate for learning where mutual respect, trust and esteem are valued. ” . . .”In statewide API (Academic Performance Index) ratings, for the fifth year in a row, both the Acalanes District and Campolindo are ranked in the very top percentiles of all public high schools in California with an API score of 919. Nationally, Campolindo is recognized regularly in Newsweek magazine as one of the “Best High Schools in America”.  The Association of Californa School Administrators honored Campolindo’s Principal, Carol Kitchens, as the Secondary Principal of the Year in 2009

This is my way — as is this demographics piechart** of saying, as fantastic as these achievements are for Ms. Jackson — something had her living (presumably) in Moraga around the time she passed the bar — and that’s a privileged community.   A neighboring one, Orinda, shows has a 2009 median household of $156K, and more than half the town earning that much, and the largest sector earning over $200K.
To get a general feel for housing in the area — this is my tactful way of saying that until the 1960s, some of these communities did not allow African-American housing loans, or greatly restricted them — read this thoughtful summary of Berkeley, including a lot on demographics and migration.
Essentially, people that might work as professors, or other high-paying jobs in SF or Berkeley (or even Oakland) would then leave those urban areas and commute straight past (on highways like as not) the dangerous and darker-skinned areas, right on back to the suburbs.  Just keep this in mind when someone from this area (however s/he got there) is all excited about helping poor kids, single mother or no single mother. And I don’t know specifically that Jennifer Jackson was; although no mention of a husband is made, or the children’s father.
(**scroll down to see race (total African Americans:  166, Hispanic, invisible — they are living elsewhere and working on the lawns and in the retail & domestic sectors no doubt (wikipedia, though, says 7% in 2010) — how few single parent households, and almost NO violent crime).  As of 2010, Moraga had a total population of 16,016 people.  As of the 2000 census, Moraga was the 79th wealthiest place in the US with a population above 10,000.   The median income for a household in the town is $98,080, and the median income for a family is $116,113. Males have a median income of $92,815 versus $51,296 for females.[almost 2:1!!] )

Blending this background of creativity, caring and flexibility with her legal training enhances her practice of family law and expands the options for her clients.

Jennifer believes that a lawyer must be actively involved in her professional community, and that life is about making a difference. Jennifer is one of the founders of Kids’ Turn, a program for separating families begun in San Francisco which has expanded exponentially in size and in quality of service to children and families.

(If you know my blog, you know EXACTLY why and how Kids’ Turn “expanded exponentially in size” — see family law attorneys, evaluators & judges on the board, see access/visitation funds “facilitating” parent education programs. . . . .As to the quality of service?  That’s debatable, but as I haven’t sat through any of the classes — except to note they use the word “parental alienation” a lot in stating benefits, i.e., “reduces parental alienation” type claims.  I’ll withhold judgment on this, as should others who haven’t  !!)

She is one of the founders of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals and served for eight years as co-editor of its journal, The Collaborative Review. She has had leadership roles in her professional organizations at local, state national and international levels, and is a past president of the Northern California chapter of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

Within five years of passing the bar, she is serving as a judge pro tem– how common is that? Or this?

Standing Committee on Custody, North: Chair 1988-1990

San Francisco Bar Association

Executive Committee, Family Law Section: Chair, 1992; Member: 1987-present
Fee Arbitration Panel: 1988-1990
Barristers Club, Co-Chair, Family Law Committee: 1988-1990
BASF Delegate to the State Bar Convention: 1989, 1990
Volunteer Legal Services Program Volunteer Attorney: 1986-2000  

[[This is almost another topic — I’ve footnoted it [VLSP* at bottom of post, a section in itself….]

Expert: Temporary Restraining Order Clinic

Jennifer has been given an “AV” rating by Martindale-Hubbell and has been named one of the top 50 female lawyers (“Super Lawyers”) in Northern California in all areas of practice by Law and Politics Publications for the past five years in a row. Jennifer practices alternative dispute resolution exclusively; she has trained extensively in mediation and collaboration, and is committed to keeping clients out of court and at the negotiating table.

The IACP has created Standards for practitioners, trainers and collaborative practice trainings. It has promulgated Ethical Guidelines for Practitioners, and continues to support excellence in collaborative practice through resources, training curriculum, practice tools, mentoring and a comprehensive website, allowing collaborative practitioners to continue our tradition of sharing and learning from one another.

Where we are going…

Today, the IACP has over 4,000 members from twenty four countries around the world. We are dedicated to educating the public about the Collaborative alternative. We are committed to fostering professional excellence in conflict resolution through Collaborative Practice. We invite you to peruse this site to learn more about IACP, our services and initiatives.

Amy is the past-chair of the Family Law Section of the Indianapolis Bar Association (2003) and is president of Families Moving Forward, Inc., a multi-disciplinary non-profit organization devoted to developing healthy approaches to family transitions.. . .[Law Degree summa cum laude Indiana Univ. School of Law, 1999; admitted to IN bar same year, graduate “with high distinction” in 1986. ]

5 years of work and/or law school, and within 4 more years she’s charing the Family Law Section of Indianapolis (that’s one city, not the whole state’s) Bar Assocation.  What a nice nonprofit and what accomplished professionals, and how successful they are.  As such, we should believe what they say, especially as the nonprofit “Families Moving Forward, Inc.” is DEVOTED to a HEALTHY APPROACH to “Family transitions.” (typically called divorces or custody matters).
 ** a name in other states used for purposes such as helping with homelessness, or infants with fetal alcohol syndrome, other issues, here it’s referring to divorce:

FAMILIES MOVING FORWARD, INC., is an interdisciplinary organization of attorneys, mental health providers, accountants, and other professionals committed to improving the process of family transition in Indiana, by reducing conflict and cost, creating healthier outcomes for children, and enhancing the satisfaction of professionals serving families.

(However, notice the articles of incorporation say it’s there to serve the families as well as the professionals serving the families)
This report is on-line at “SAIF” where it probably was presented:

Seminars For Advanced Interdisciplinary Family Professionals


This For-Profit group incorporated as below in Indiana, with the address “9000 KEYSTONE CROSSING, STE 600, INDIANAPOLIS, IN 46240 (which is “HuirasLaw,”  Wm. E. Huiras, although the Registered Agent is another attorney, Robin Brown Neihaus (LinkedIn)

Date Name (Type)
7/27/2006 SEMINARS FOR ADVANCED INTERDISCIPLINARY FAMILY PROFESSIONALS, INC. D/B/A SAIF  (Assumed))
(the entity filed one report in 2008, file notes, it owes 2010/2011 – perhaps IN is only every 2 years).

Segments from the Indiana 2005 Sample PC report (handbook):

The sample report begins with a situation between father and stepfather which was hostile.  Both wanted to coach on Little (10) Joey’s baseball team.

Therapy for both TOGETHER is recommended:

5. Mr. Smith and Mr. Doe should attend counseling sessions together to attempt to resolve their(For example, the mother did not want the father to volunteer on Fridays at school any longer. She maintained that the children were emotional and upset on those mornings and did not want to go to school. The teachers were contacted and reported that the children looked forward to and enjoyed their father’s presence.

AFCC CLAIMS CREDIT FOR HAVING DEVELOPING PARENT COORDINATION:

From their 5-year prospectus:

AFCC Guidelines for Parenting Coordination

In 2003, AFCC President George Czutrin appointed a Task Force to develop Model Standards of Practice for Parenting Coordination, following the first Task Force on Parenting

Coordination that conducted research and published the 2003 Report on Parenting Coordination Implementation Issues. The Task Force determined that the Parenting Coordination process was too new to use the term “Model Standards” and, in May 2005, proposed to the Board of Directors the AFCC Guidelines for Parenting Coordination. The Guidelines passed unanimously and are available on the AFCC Web site at http://www.afccnet.org/resources/standards_practice.asp.

AFCC Parenting Coordination Task Force: Christie Coates, J.D., M.Ed. (Chair), Linda Fieldstone, M.Ed., (Secretary), Barbara Ann Bartlett, J.D., Robin Deutsch, Ph.D., Billie Lee Dunford-Jackson, J.D. , Philip Epstein, Q.C., Barbara Fidler, Ph.D., Jonathan Gould, Ph.D., Hon. William Jones (ret.), Joan Kelly, Ph.D., Matthew J. Sullivan, Ph.D., Robert N. Wistner, J.D

. . . .

The following new publications have been developed since 2002 while dated products were been eliminated:

• Parenting Coordination: Implementation Issues

There are scholarly articles galore about this.  One by matthew Sullivan, Ph.D. (and a parent coordinator) uses the phrase repeatedly in the abstract — but to access the article one-time costs $34 and permanently $155.  Needless to say, not many people who have parent coordinators in their lives can afford to read up on it….

“In 1994 the concept of parent coordination was spawned by a concerned group of professionals in California and Colorado who

WHILE PROMOTION EFFORTS TEND TO PHRASE PARENT COORDINATION PASSIVELY (as if a natural development), IN PRIVATE PUBLICATIONS, IT TAKES RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE PROMOTION OF THE FIELD:

AFCC STAYS FOCUSED ON IMPLEMENTING AND PROMOTING PARENT COORDINATION:

And I am going to show you what apparent frauds some of the prime “trainers” are in this field too.     But first, let’s look at the upcoming 2012 conference called:

The New Frontier

Exploring the Challenges and Possibilities of the Changed Landscape for Children and the Courts:

This is an upcoming (Feb. 2012) meeting of the California Chapter of the AFCC.  An entire day is dedicated to a workshop on Parenting Coordination, and a secondary one talks about how to get it in there — even if parents are indigent.

Here are the presenters’ bios (please scroll through).  Some are more than a page, others short.  Notice the types of professionals involved (typical), Judges, Attorneys and Psychologists, Mediators, etc.    Some have been around forever (Joan B. Kelly, Dianna Gould-Saltzmann) others seem newer:

Abbas Hadjian, JD, CFLS

Graduate of Tehran University School of Law and Harvard…

Abbas Hadjian, Esquire devotes a substantial part of his family law practice to educating the Farsi‐speaking community on the comparisons between the American and Iranian legal system and recently published “Divorce in California,” which is written in Farsi. He is an expert on Iranian culture and laws.

(from his website, partial description of an amazing background):

Mr. Hadjian was born, educated and lived in Iran until 1980. Between 1959 and 1968 Mr. Hadjian was a professional journalist in Iran, with positions including editor, writer, reporter, translator and commentator in major Iranian publications and news agencies. His profession a journalist required and helped Mr. Hadjian’s foundational understanding of the Iranian legal, social, economical and political structure. Between 1962 and 1966, Mr. Hadjian attended the School of Law, Political Science and Economics in Tehran University. Among others, he received courses in Iranian Constitution, Civil, Family and Probate law, furthering his understanding of the legal, social, economic and political infrastructure of his native country.

Upon graduation. Mr. Hadjian became a political appointee in the Office of the Governor General, Iranian Southern Ports and Islands (Persian Gulf), where he acted as a ranking civil officer in the region until 1978, the year of the Iranian Revolution. As deputy to the Governor General in social and economic affairs, Mr. Hadjian relied heavily on his legal studies and implemented them in real life situations. In 1975, Harvard University accepted him to the renowned Edward S. Mason Program for Public Development on full scholarship, acknowledging five years of Mr. Hadjian’s services in developing the Persian Gulf region as one year of post-graduate studies. He was awarded a Masters Degree in Public Administration

A related site from “Culture Counts.net” (site has three diverse professionals) has a page about fatherhood, the new normal, which “surprisingly” reminds readers about:

Positive Effects of Father Involvement on Children

  • Children display increased self-confidence.
  • Better able to deal with frustration and other feelings.
  • Higher grade point averages.
  • More likely to mature into compassionate adults.
  • Paternal emotional responses to sons were associated with a 50% decrease in sons’ expressions of sadness and anxiety from preschool to early school age

Positive Effects of Father Involvement on Men

  • Helps men reevaluate their priorities and become more caring human beings who are concerned about future generations.
  • May reduce health-risk behaviors.
  • Decreases psychological distress as emotional involvement with children acts as a buffer against work-related stress.
  • Happiness and increased physical activity.
  • Sense of accomplishment, well-being, and contentment.
  • Men tend to be more involved with extended family and others in the community.
  • Over time, fatherhood increases marital stability.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _
Here is the rather short blurb of a long-time attorney in California, who in this conference is presenting an all-day workshop on Parenting Coordination:

Leslie Ellen Shear, JD, CFLS, CALS

Ms. Shear is a graduate of UCLA School of Law and admitted to the California Bar in 1976 and maintains her practice in Encino, California. A frequent lecturer in custody matters, she has been involved in a number of high-profile custody cases over the years – most recently, Marriage of LaMusga and Marriage of Seagondollar.

I note she was admitted to the bar fully 20 years before welfare reform and almost as much before VAWA.
These three are going to present on Parenting Coordination — an all-day institute.  It must be important:

9:00am – 5:15pm

All Day Institute (2)

(I2) Inside Parenting Coordination Practice in California: Managing Roles, Responsibilities, and Risks

  • Lyn Greenberg, Ph D
  • Alexandra Leichtner, JD
  • Leslie Ellen Shear, JD, CFLS, CALS
Apparently even indigent people need parent coordination — there’s a workshop on how to get it to them:
  • W1 Establishing a Local Parenting Coordination Program Including Pro Bono PC Services to Indigent FamiliesHonorable Lorna Alksne// Charlene S. Baron, JD, MA // Shirley Ann Higuchi, JD  // Lori Love, Ph D


http://www.link.cs.cmu.edu/link/submit-sentence-4.html

III. Parenting Coordinators Work With the Most Difficult Family Court Population – Those Most Prone to Assert Grievances and Challenge Decisionmakers

… cases are usually referred to parenting coordination because they are chronically litigious and difficult to manage. These parents have often had several attorneys, evaluators, and mediators — professional hopping and shopping is rampant. Their court files are thick with motions, court appearances, and allegations of wrongdoing by the parents.
Coates, Deutsch et al. (2004) Parenting Coordination for High-Conflict Fami- lies 42 Fam. Ct. Rev. 246, 252

The child custody cases referred to parenting coordinators are the most complex, acrimonious, difficult and demanding cases. Most parents regain their perspective and bearings within two years of separation, and do not need this kind of intensive and ongoing service model. Parents who continue to return to court with enforcement and modification requests after completing co- parenting educational programs, and after a child custody evaluation are can- didates for parenting coordination,

Parents who need a PC intervention are typically a special group for whom the passage of time has not reduced the rage and angry behaviors of at least one if not both parents. The 10–20% of parents who remain in entrenched and high conflict two to three years after separation/divorce are significantly more likely to have severe personality disorders and/or mental illness (Johnston & Roseby, 1997). Understanding the characteristics of parents with severe borderline, dependent, narcissistic, and antisocial personality disorders, why these parents react so strongly to rejection and loss, how the child is used in attempts to re-stabilize their functioning and punish the other parent, and how personality disorders are exacerbated by stress, conflict and the adversarial system will facilitate more effective work with these difficult clients.

Kelly (2008) Preparing for the Parenting Coordination Role: Training Needs for Mental Health and Legal Professionals 5 Journal of Child Custody 140,149-150

+ + + + = = = + + +  = = =

[VSLP*].  This footnote comes from a fragment of attorney Jennifer Jackson’s resume, which itself came from a bio of another nonprofit, Families Moving Forward, Inc. in Indiana.  I was following up in another nonprofit, “International Association Collaborative Professionals” and I guess you can see about how curious I am about the inter-relationships of various nonprofits.

I looked at the staff.  This one caught my attention — because of the specialties, not him personally:

Chris Emley (in 2011, or at least now on the website.)

Chris is a certified family law specialist and a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, with 41 years of experience focusing on child custody litigation.  He has been included in Best Lawyers in America since 1991.  He has helped to govern VLSP since its inception in 1979.  He received the State Bar President’s Pro Bono Service Award in 1983, the Legal Assistance Association of California’s Award of Merit in 1989, and two Awards of Merit from The Bar Association of San Francisco (1977 and 2004).  He was a BASF board member from 1979 through 1981, and chaired the Lawyer Referral Service Committee.  Chris was Vice President of the San Francisco Child Abuse Council, Chairman of the Board of Legal Assistance to the Elderly, and Chairman of the Board of Legal Services for Children, Inc.

There happens to be one pro bono group in the SF Bay area which used to help women leaving violence and eventually in the news (and had I known at the time to check all these 990s, I’d have seen the notation that it specialized in helping NONCustodial, low-income fathers, I’d have realized why this group refused to help so many mothers stuck in the family law system.).   The presence of a Certified Family Law Practitioner on the board of VSLP, with his emphasis being on children’s rights, and without question, children in ANY institutional system these days need help and representation, does make me wonder who is helping with women’s rights when it comes to actual mothers who aren’t in jail for killing their batterers (which have some groups advocating) — but actually dealing with the horrors of year after year in a custody battle with a violent or abusive ex, and doing so without even a grasp of how it works, or who pays its bills.

General Comments:

I don’t see anything in VSLP which remotely deals with the situation, and was able to get no actual help (legal representation of any sort, pro bono) in my case either, not past the initial restraining order, and a perfunctory (and NOT in court) attempt to renew it, which I was told would be a non-issue, it’s often granted automatically!  No one came to court where I, like many, many other “custodial” mothers after leaving abuse, was blindsided by a prior ex parte movement consolidating renewal with a divorce and custody matter, thus shifting the case into the family law system, where it remained, and where the actual topic of ongoing DV was drowned by the type of talk we see in these realms — psychological states, not literal deeds!

The moral is, every program and every nonprofit has its target clientele.  As the target clientele (for keeping in their proper place) in so many federal grants to the states are fathers (when it comes to custody matters), it would make no “sense” for the government to also pay the opposing side, the protective mothers!

[[Interesting program, project of SF Bar: its family law person Chris Emley also on Board of “Legal Services for Children” which (as of 2001) got funding from City & County of SF, SF Dept. of Public Health, and SF Dept. of Children, Youth & Their Families.

Its address seems to be a few doors down from Kids Turn:  1254 Market vs. 1242 Market Street.  “Legal Services for Children” (2010) shows no Chris Emley on the Board, but its main purposes are:  1.  Guardianship for children wanting it; 2.  Helping kids dealing with expulsion and school-related issues; 3.  Immigration. . ..It also represents children in foster care and helps support LGBT youth.  200 Volunteer attorneys gave over $1mil worth of their help.    The group received over $1 mill. of contrib& grants, and gave $65,000 to a DC nonprofit, National Juvenile Defender Center (EIN# 02060456.  On “Foundation Finder” this EIN doesn’t pull up a tax return…..for any year.  Nor does a name search! However from NCCSdataweb, I see that it was incorporated in 2002 (legal services for children, in 1975).  This “National Juvenile Defender Center” interests me:  2002 income, 0.  A 2007 letter from Andrea Weisman, signed DC Dept of Youth Rehab. Services (“DYRS”)  (shares address with a Board member of NJDC, Mark Soler, 2002) expresses the serious problems of Youth in Adult Facilities.  Weisman and Soler (again, board member of the group which got $65K grant from the West-Coast “Legal Services for Children,” which takes funding from various depts. of SF and its city & county) worked together (1999?) on “No Minor Matter:  Children in Maryland’s Jails.”  Weisman notes she got a $1.6mil grant from OJJDP.   ]]

National Juvenile Defender Center:  

2002– income is zero.  By 2009 — they are into Technical Training and Assistance.  And ExDir. Patricia Puritz as only paid director, gets $134K salary) — and have landed over $5 million of grants, and earning $10K from investment income and have some serious program income in 2010 ($119K= almost (but not quite) enough to pay their own Exec. Director:.  Check it out.  So why, in the following year (revenues down to $405K — but probably some leftovers, wanna bet?) did a group in SF just grant them $65,000?  Or was that a sort of tax equalization between them both.  I live in the same state as “Legal Service for Children, Inc.” and we know that our K-12 schools are taking a serious hit?  Why should enough money to feed, clothe and house three families in this area for a year, be given to a nonprofit out of DC that just got $5 million the year before?

http://njdc.info/about_us.php

The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) was created in 1999 to respond to the critical need to build the capacity of the juvenile defense bar and to improve access to counsel and quality of representation for children in the justice system. In 2005, the National Juvenile Defender Center separated from the American Bar Association to become an independent organization. NJDC gives juvenile defense attorneys a more permanent capacity to address practice issues, improve advocacy skills, build partnerships, exchange information, and participate in the national debate over juvenile crime.

They operate 9 US Regional Centers; the California one is in SF and among its projects is:

MacArthur Juvenile Indigent Defense Action Network (JIDAN)

In 2008, California was selected by the the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation as one of four sites in the nation to participate in the foundation’s Juvenile Indigent Defense Action Network (JIDAN).  The four JIDAN sites, Massachusetts, Florida, New Jersey and California, join the four MacArthur Models for Change “core” states of Illinois, Louisiana, Pennsylvania and Washington to form an eight-state network.

The California team is led by the Youth Law Center, and includes members from the Center for Families, Children and the Courts of the California Administrative Office of the Courts; the Loyola Law School Center for Juvenile Law & Policy; the Los Angeles County Public Defender’s Office; theSan Francisco Public Defender’s Office; the Contra Costa County Public Defender’s Office; andHuman Rights Watch.

The eight-state network is coordinated through the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC), and engages juvenile defenders, policymakers, judges and other key stakeholders in designing strategies to improve juvenile indigent defense policy and practice. California was chosen as a result of its demonstrated ability to achieve measurable reform on juvenile indigent defense issues.  California’s JIDAN work will be centered in the Pacific Juvenile Defender Center.

The Exec. Director of this “NJDC.INFO” nonprofit (inc. 2002) was in 2003 appointed by the Governor of Virginia to a Board of Juvenile Justice:

This bio/blurb places Ms. Puritz Professionally, prior to here, she was ABA Juvenile Justice Center, etc.

Much of this relates to the “OJJDP” and the Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention Act.  This is an entirely different category than “Parenting Coordination” through the family law center; it is dealing with things such as the US being the world largest per-capita jailor, that those in jail are disproprotionately minority, that horrible things are happening to youth while in confinement, etc.  By comparison, the “Parent Coordinator” issue seems like kids’ play unless one begins to wonder how many of the youth in detention had parents stuck in the family law system, which definitely cuts down on actual parenting time and focus!

p://www.americanbar.org/groups/child_law/policy/juvenile_justice.html

Written by Let's Get Honest

December 14, 2011 at 9:00 pm

Posted in 1996 TANF PRWORA (cat. added 11/2011), AFCC, After She Speaks Up - Reporting Child Sexual Abuse, After She Speaks Up - Reporting Domestic Violence and/or Suicide Threats, Bush Influence & Appointees (Cat added 11/2011), Business Enterprise, Cast, Script, Characters, Scenery, Stage Directions, Designer Families, Domestic Violence vs Family Law, Lackawanna County PA Corruption Protests, Lethality Indicators - in News, Organizations, Foundations, Associations NGO Hybrids, Parent Education promotion, Parenting Coordination promotion, Psychology & Law = an AFCC tactical lobbying unit, When Police Shoot / Shoot Back, Where's Mom?, Who's Who (bio snapshots)

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WIth Them in Spirit Tomorrow — Pennsylvania Parents Protest Apparent Court Cronyism (12/2/2011, Lackawanna County)

with one comment

 

This information is on a public forum, so I took the liberty of copying it here — from a thread from “Scranton Political Times” “Doherty Deceit Forum

It’s a quick post, but covers topics I’ve been blogging for a long time:

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

PRESS RELEASE SENT OUT AT NOON TODAY

Second Lackawanna County Family Court Kids 4Kash Protest Set For December 2, 2011

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Scranton, Pa

The second in a series of demonstrations in what The Protesters have labeled The Lackawanna County KIDS 4 KASH Corruption Scheme will begin at 9am this Friday in front of the Family Court Building at 200 Adams Avenue. The protesters, many of whom are family court litigants, are in disbelief and outraged that President Judge Thomas Munley has not taken any action against the Court Appointed Guardian ad Litem, Attorney Danielle Ross. Unbelievably, Ross who is currently under investigation by the FBI and the Administrative Office of the Pennsylvania Court (AOPC) is still being assigned new cases every week.

{{WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF PARENTS SIMPLY REFUSED TO PARTICIPATE?  REFUSED TO PAY? AND THE JUDGE THEN TRIED TO INCARCERATE? }}

Their investigation of Ms. Ross was set in motion when a parent named Bruce Levine contacted Detective Michelle Mancuso from the Lackawanna County District Attorneys Office about discrepancies he found on Ross invoices for the services she claimed she provided as Guardian. As fate would have it, right about the same time, a thread directed against Ross called Kids 4 Kash was started by political activist Joseph Pilchesky on his contentious website, http://www.dohertydeceit.com. Fundamental to Pilchesky’s website is The First Amendment Right to Freedom of Speech.

The site encourages antagonistic dialogue about current local and global issues that is often times abrasive. Users that post comments on topics typically remain anonymous; therefore, it provides a safe venue for other parents and litigants to share their family court horror stories and eventually their identities with one another. Several of those parents that connected with each other on the website began to turn over Ross’ invoices to the authorities, which eventually lead to the involvement of the United States Attorney General’s Office.

The FBI began their investigation with a subpoena requesting all documents involving each and every case to which Attorney Ross was appointed and a Grand Jury was convened. In days to follow, many additional subpoenas were served upon court employees including the Lackawanna Count Court Administrator, Ron MacKay. When federal agents showed up at MacKay’s office located inside the county’s main Courthouse, he was sequestered and forced to remain in the hallway while agents searched his office. After about an hour, the agents left the Court Administrator’s Office with several boxes of documents.

It is unknown at this time what the FBI confiscated from MacKay’s office. As to why they raided his office, those close to the case strongly believe that the scope of the federal investigation has broadened well beyond the alleged fraudulent billing practices of Attorney Ross. Rumors of case steering and monetary kickbacks are out there.

The status of the AOPC investigation into the Guardian ad Litem Program, as well as Home Evaluation and supervised visitation payments, is unclear at this time despite the fact that on November 2, 2011, AOPC Attorney, Michael Daley, stated in open court that it would be available two weeks ago. To date, a RTK letter that was sent to the Court requesting the report has gone unanswered. Reliable sources within Family Court speculate that there are at least two plausible reasons for the delay. On one hand, there are many who are convinced that the AOPC investigation amounts to little more than a smoke screen used to give the Court a few months to cover its tracks and get its act together. While others believe that public pressure has forced AOPC investigator, Joseph Mittleman, to hold off on finalizing the report. He states that the AOPC is obligated to look into alleged acts of attorney misconduct as well as to conducting interviews with alleged victims of Family Court corruption.

Protests will be held every Friday starting at 9am in front of Family Court. The goal is to bring forth public awareness and gain support in the effort to expose what appears to be a moneymaking racket devised by the members of the Judiciary and several Child Custody/Divorce Professionals who do business with Family Court. The individuals with whom the Court most frequently Orders Family Court litigants to consult are Guardians Danielle Ross and Brenda Kobal, Lackawanna County’s sole co-parenting coordinator, Anne Marie Termini, Kids First presenter, Chet Muklewicz, Court mediator, AnthonyLibassi, Psychologists Drs. Ronald Refice and Arnold Shivenhold, and various child visitation supervisors affiliated with the Scranton Counseling Center.

The Parties who have been forced by Order of the Court to see these providers, attend numerous appointments, whether they need to or not, and pay enormous fees (if they are not declared indigent) have a lot of unanswered questions. Until those questions are answered, the only logical conclusion is that the Court and these providers are unjustly enriching themselves not only with the millions of Federal and State Grant dollars allocated for indigent Lackawanna County Children and Families but also money from private-pay litigants.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

 

“SHIVENHOLD” I’m fairly sure means “SCHIENVOLD”  who is AFCC leadership:

 

Here’s one filing in which Mr. Shienvold was called as Expert Witness for the Father, who wants primary physical custody of the children, and after the mother submitted to custody reports preceding a “Custody Trial” the mother then, of course, had to make special motions to actually read what was reported about her, and apparently planned to call him up and interview or cross-examine him.  The father then protest — aw heck, look at it yourself.

 

http://www.courts.state.pa.us/OpPosting/Superior/out/a29038_05.pdf  (his name is apparently mis-spelled here, too).

 

I have already posted on the forum that Mr. Scheinvold is a primary player in the Pennsylvania Commission for Justice Initiatives, and a key AFCC person, as was at least one of their judges, and that Harhut, Termini, and (was it Ross?) were presenting in Brooklyn, 2009 together at an “NACC” association meeting on matters related to Guardianship and Domestic Violence.

 

He is ALSO the “President-Elect” of AFCC, meaning his influence will be upon more parents than just those in this area.  I hope they figure this out quickly in time for the next generation of children, that an international association with a checkered history is helping run the courthouses, but right now, most don’t seem too interested in this, they are scrambling to survive, and have not looked up to the horizons.  In other words, for control to operate freely, it’s connections to other control must remain subterranean.  AFCC is hardly “subterranean” when it’s publishing statewide model custody evaluation standards, inventing new fields of practice faster than the previous ones can be caught and complained about (Parenting Coordination) and with personnel (over 3,000 membership) including, for example, at least a few on the California Judicial Council Administrative Office of the Courts.

[AFCC]

President Elect 
Arnold T. Shienvold, Ph.D.
Harrisburg, PA

Arnold Shienvold is the founding partner of Riegler, Shienvold & Associates. Dr. Shienvold received his Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in clinical psychology from the University of Alabama and has specialized in dealing with high-conflict families since he began his practice in 1980. Dr. Shienvold is a member of the American Psychological Association and is a fellow of the Pennsylvania Psychological Association where he also serves on the custody evaluation task force. Dr. Shienvold is a past president of the Academy of Family Mediators and a past president of the Association for Conflict Resolution. He is also a member of the Pennsylvania Council of Mediators.

The PA Adminsitrative Office of the Courts and FBI are supposedly investigating the Lackawanna County parents’ complaints, so I hope they take it upon themselves to figure out — quickly — who the Pennsylvania Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) is comprised of, paid by, and answerable to.

 

  1. [PDF]

    Commission for Justice Initiatives in Pennsylvania Changing the 

    www15.brinkster.com/ncfcpgh/Report.pdf

    File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat – View as HTML
    Arnold Shienvold, Ph.D., brought great understanding of the dynamics of separation, ….. 3 Site visit by Judy Shopp April 5, 2006; Dr. Arnold Sheinvold provides 

    You’ve visited this page 5 times. Last visit: 11/30/11

I don’t know that these parents have yet accepted that a State-Level “commission for Justice Initiatives” report (2007) called “Changing the Culture of Custody” with Mr. Shienvold listed front and center as a consultant actually relates to problems they are having at the county level

 

Arnold Shienvold, Ph.D.


Dr. Shienvold is the founding partner of Riegler • Shienvold and Associates.

Education
Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in clinical psychology from the University of Alabama. He specialized in child clinical psychology and completed his internship at the Ohio State University Hospital.

Area of Emphasis
Dr. Shienvold has specialized in dealing with high conflict families since he began his practice. He is recognized locally and nationally as an expert in the areas of custody evaluations and family mediation. In addition to his direct clinical practice in those areas, Dr. Shienvold has consulted to public and private agencies, taught and lectured at a multitude of professional conferences and schools and published papers on these topics. Dr. Shienvold continues to see individuals and couples in therapy and he has an active forensic practice. Additionally, Dr. Shienvold has served as a professional facilitator for group meetings.

 

 

Yep.  High-conflict families.  Here’s a website I found in Australia (where AFCC has active membership, FYI) which calls “High Conflict” what it is, if I may quote them.  As an added bonus, I stuck two or three comments on this post, which is a year old now.  I hope that by the time 2012 is halfpast, the people in Scranton area will figure out (accept) what they are dealing with in the Unified Family Courts per se — which is an expense-paid (by txpayers) largely immune from responsibility, self-referring, self-propagating multiple income stream and often tax-exempt cash machine for paid membership of  about 5 different organizations (all playing at monitoring each other, instead of, more commonly, referring each other and providing business referrals to make them look  more expert than they really are.  If “expert” means, learning a business-specific jargon,  and to have a greater conscience about one’s cohorts than one’s clients — then a 12 year old, for example, has already learned to speak his or her own cultural language among peers, and probably knows as much about bullying, gangs, exclusion and arbitrary standards for who is IN and who is OUT.

In order for this field to continue until each generation of Family Court professionals retires (and eventually some will die of old age, though many of the originals are still collecting royalties, probably through Kids’First type operations nationwide), it MUST continue the lie (that’s  L.I.E.) that adult parents are by and large to be treated like misbehaving children, or punished until they play along.

This has been going on SO LONG that what they are studying and conferencing about now is basically a contaminated sample (of people and personalities).  In addition to the many factors of society contributing to any parent’s “psychological profile,” is probably such things as motherless children, children in foster care because there’s an incentive to put them there, kids who run away from abuse because there was no other safe option (they do not all turn out as well as Alanna Krause of Northern California, whose father, once he got custody, sent her away at age 13 to some kind of reform camp), and a series of protective mothers who feel it necessary to flee the US, or the state — although they, too, are quite likely to be hunted down and incarcerated.

 

10 Reasons The Family Court is Not Just About Conflict

1. Family Violence is often referred as “High Conflict”, “Entrenched Conflict” to mask the severity of the situation.

Mentioned in the latest report on Family Violence in Family Courts, high conflict has often been a tool to diminish support for victims within the media and inside the courts andwritten judgments.
For Instance, a judge referred to death threats, property damage and stalking towards the mother as, “High Conflict”:

 

 

Here’s a 3-page outline from a 2007 Texas Meeting of the AAML ( a group which initials anyone with a family law case should look up themselves!)

DEALING WITH CLIENTS WHICH ARE TOO HARD TO LOVE

The presenters gratefully acknowledge the work of Arnold T. Sheinvold, Ph.D. Dr. Sheinvold is the managing partner of Riegler, Shienvold & Associates, a comprehensive psychological practice in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The materials in this presentation were developed and presented by Dr. Sheinvold {{that’s SHIENVOLD}} at the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers’ 2007 Midyear Meeting. The presenters appreciate Dr. Sheinvold’s generosity in sharing his materials with the Texas family law community.

(and lists the personality types — borderline, narcissistic, histrionic, antisocial, etc.)

 

Here’s a 2006 article (abstract, I guess) from the FAMILY COURT REVIEW — which is a publication jointly published by AFCC & Hofstra Univ. in New York, listing this psychologists among others the parents are protesting, a number of AFCC personnel, including Philip Stahl, Ph.D. which virtually guarantees there will be (more) conversation about parental alienation (one of Dr. Stahl’s favorite topics), etc.

  1. Task Force for Model Standards of Practice for Child Custody Evaluation,

  2. David A. Martindale Reporter,
  3. Lorraine Martin,
  4. William G. Austin Task Force Co-chairs,
  5. Leslie Drozd,
  6. Dianna Gould-Saltman,
  7. H. D. Kirkpatrick,
  8. Kathryn Kuehnle,
  9. Debra Kulak,
  10. Denise McColley,
  11. Arnold Sheinvold, {{per his website it’s “SHIENVOLD”}}
  12. Jeffrey Siegel,
  13. Philip M. Stahl

Article first published online: 7 DEC 2006

DOI: 10.1111/j.1744-1617.2007.129_3.x

Issue

Family Court Review

Family Court Review

Volume 45, Issue 1, pages 70–91, January 2007

Additional Information(Show All)

 _ _ _ _ _ _ _

 

Ronald Refice

 

A Bit About How It’s Done”  (familycourtmatters Sept. 2011 post)

Here’s one of my former posts showing people samples of how to look things up — corporations, associations, just stay persistent!

Today’s Post is “all over the place” but provides a sampler of how — with as clumsy tools as various states give, the habit of searching for corporations and people who incorporate them, and then comparing boards of directors, whether they actually file tax returns or not, and whether while the press is all about justice, children, and helping resolve conflicts, a view at the nonprofit characterization many times simply categorizes the group as “Board of Trade” “Business Promotion” — which is what it is.

 

Too bad Thomas Szasz professor took up with a cult that’s been literally booted out of a country, the Church of Scientology — but think about what’s being said here:

Thomas Stephen Szasz (play/ˈsɑːs/sahss; born April 15, 1920) is a psychiatrist and academic. Since 1990[1] he has been Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at the State University of New York Health Science Center in SyracuseNew York. He is a well-known social critic of the moral and scientific foundations of psychiatry, and of the social control aims of medicine in modern society, as well as of scientism. His books The Myth of Mental Illness (1960) and The Manufacture of Madness: A Comparative Study of the Inquisition and the Mental Health Movement (1970) set out some of the arguments with which he is most associated.

 

I wonder how the book compares to Phyllis Chesler’s “Women & Madness”

 

His views on special treatment follow from classical liberal roots which are based on the principles that each person has the right to bodily and mental self-ownership and the right to be free from violence from others, although he criticized the “Free World” as well as the communist states for their use of psychiatry and “drogophobia”. He believes that suicide {{!??!}}, the practice of medicine, use and sale of drugs and sexual relations should be private, contractual, and outside of state jurisdiction.

In 1973, the American Humanist Association named him Humanist of the Year and in 1979 he was honored with an honorary doctorate[2] at Universidad Francisco Marroquín.

 

Who wants a CONFLICT-FREE SOCIETY?  Is this some sort of death-wish, or a wish for a sedated society?  Or a managed society, as opposed to one where leadership is not shut down (because most leaders are going to cause some conflict; in fact some of the most significant leaders around — Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela, Lincoln, John F. Kennedy,  and others –  (may I say Jesus Christ in this context?) — end up getting assassinated — yet their work lives on.  Most particularly, Gandhi was assassinated, but through NONViolent protest and understanding the economic system, helped get the British Empire out of India.     Maybe all of us should re-read his “moment of truth”  and get to ours, quicker, building upon what others before have actually learned — and not continually recreating from scratch as if the world has no history.

These groups are causing the conflict themselves by a number of habits:

  • It appears to be greed, dishonesty (chronic, though I can’t say all) and wishing to turn our justice system into their personal ATM and Rx-dispensary.  Psychologists can’t force-medicate people (I think), so the next best option is to become a Parent Coordinator adn get off on wrecking kids lives based on the fact that one of their parents disagrees with the other, and ignoring the fact that this might be because one is genuinely dangerous (or simply an _ _ _ hole hell-bent on punishing the other).
  • Using federal grants to assist one side of the party — and this is the fatherhood movement, sorry you honest Dads — to tip the scales.
  • Building courthouses when the rest of the country needs LESS micromanagement, not more of this kind.
Any one seeking to control language seeks to eliminate the First Amendment (typically for gain) and do so through a propaganda-driven war on the unaware.   AFCC has admitted it seeks to control language.  The associated groups do not respect the basic concept of due process — which requires no conflict of interest.

Go, Lackawanna!

I hope that protesters, besides correcting the spelling of “SHIENVOLD” (for credibility reasons), also feel free to search my site reporting on LibassiMediation being built by revising rules of court, into the custody modification form, my comparison of KIDS FIRST to KIDS TURN (California)*

And come to realize that a fifth column of psychologists, psychiatrists (adult, child, whatever) and mental health experts is basically a “Family Court Archipelago.” Even physicists have to examine their fundamental assumptions from time to time (cf. Newton, Galileo, and the recently publicized “String Theory”) not the least by at least examining evidence.  in this field — ONE NEVER HAS TO; It’s just about become THE primary field of the US Government (world’s largest contractor, and debtor) — and there are no right answers.   There is only a caste system:  Paid Expert v. Humble Subject matter).

 

 

 

*which is virtually a training ground for the California Family Court personnel (almost everyone has been on its boards, not to mention a person who was “most-wanted” or close to it as a Tax Evador — Halsey Minor (I think he’s on the Board too), plus the defenders of the high priestess of Satan against the High Priest (LaVey, and I”m using the terms loosely), operating at the time out of the same address were, it seems, Kids Turn was operating (2nd floor, 1242 market Street) and I posted that link also.

 

THE MYTH OF MENTAL ILLNESS, from ARACHNOID.COM/Psychology

with thanks to its author for presenting another outlook on the “experts” causing the trouble above.

The evidence-based revolution in psychology.

Copyright © 2011, Paul Lutus

For decades there has been increasing evidence that psychologists can’t reliably diagnose or treat mental illnesses, or mental illnesses aren’t objective illnesses as that term is understood, or that psychology has no testable scientific content. Psychologists’ reaction to this long-term trend has been to add more human behaviors to the “mental illness” category, in order not to lose more ground to medicine.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)5, what many call the “Bible” of psychology and its single most important guide to practice, shows this trend clearly — each new edition contains more conditions thought to merit the label “mental illness.” Here is a count of “mental illnesses” included in the DSM by year:*

Year Number of mental illnesses
1952 112
1968 163
1980 224
1987 253
1994 374

Obviously this trend might reflect an increase in our understanding of mental illness, and there might really be hundreds of legitimate mental illnesses. But let’s take a closer look at some conditions listed in the current DSM, conditions thought to require intervention by a mental health professional:

  • Stuttering
  • Spelling Disorder
  • Written Expression Disorder
  • Mathematics Disorder
  • Caffeine Intoxication/Withdrawal
  • Nicotine use/Withdrawal
  • Sibling Rivalry Disorder
  • Phase of Life Problem

Hmm. It seems if you don’t like your older brother, or can’t spell or do math very well, you aren’t just growing up, you’re suffering from a mental illness and need help from a professional. But I favor another explanation — as time passed and psychiatrists and psychologists realized they couldn’t reliably diagnose or cure real mental illnesses, they decided to repurpose themselves as academic tutors, babysitters and hired friends for wealthy patrons.*** For this strategy to work, the DSM needed to include ordinary states of being that could only justify the help of a teacher or sympathetic friend. In other words, in rewriting their profession’s guidebook, for self-serving reasons psychologists deliberately blurred the distinction between everyday problems and mental illness.

**For an account of the struggle to include just a few women in the review board, see “Backlash:  America’s Undeclared War on Women.”  For a bonus, you can also read in this book (probably available at low cost or used, or library) a chapter on Robert Bly and Warren Farrell — after he recanted his prior feminism (Warren Farrell these days wants to start a White House Council on Men and Boys, I heard).  It’s pretty funny.
*** Actually, the statement in blue may be a rational explanation for AFCC’s origins.  They quickly realized that the wealthiest patron around was the United States Government (i.e. those who fund it).  One of its founders was a prison psychologist.  Other hotshots in this in this AFCC association come from (or still work in) psychiatric hospitals.  COmbined with the wonderful reputation the legal field has for ethics and honesty (:  (:, it sounds like a dynamic duo to me:  Psychology plus lawyers, plus judges, most of who probably used to be lawyers anyhow.
profit (apart from sheer conniving and greed, the joy of “getting away with it” and being somewhat close to the top of society, without actually having to do more than rehash the catechism yearly in slightly different terms, and assign outreach coordinators and “evangelists” to connect up with people already ensconced in the judicial and psychological professions, etc.)
ONE FINAL NOTE — ACESTUDY.org
Long-term trauma and abuse (“Adverse Childhood Events”) is going to have an impact on growing children.  As such, abusing children would become literally profitable.  StoppingCourt-Ordered Abuse of Children might be contrary to the purpose of the courts from the start, which was to ensure psychologists increasing respectability, whether earned or not earned.
I don’t want to dismiss anyone’s Ph.D. lightly.  But with a Ph.D. there comes a responsibility to make sure it’s not just the same thing, Piled Higher and Deeper.  And in this particular field, it had very little foundational depth to start with.
This can be seen in the tendency to pompous declarations and mutual self-admiration among many of the associations, and in some cases (I doubt in Dr. Shienvold’s) far too many false credentials.
(That’s all I have time for on this post.)

1996-2010: How “Ending welfare as we know it” morphed to [so far…] Statewide Marriage and Relationship Education –for Everyone

with one comment

Some of my friends scold me for showing too much and not just telling.  They’re right.    But as I like to SHOW (and then TELL, too) — posts run to triple-length size,  then I split them up with new — and long — titles.

(Those of you who know me — this is a “Conversational Public Data Dump.”  You are forewarned!)

(see also my comment — it has a major double-pasted section in it, too.  I will printout & purge the duplicates….  The value of this post is in the narrative, plus the links).

This post began as a TANF introduction to another one on a specific Healthy Marriage Grantee.

You may not think this information relevant — but, it has already landed in your back yard; it is restructuring the United States; it is a financial issue with global ramifications.  The story of HOW this happened (and through whom) will help us pay better attention in the future, and should rule out certain distractions — such as choosing which battle to fight, and which diversionary propaganda to ignore.

However, someone has to protest the incremental removal of civil liberties going along with incremental spending down of public dollars, diverted to . . .. for lack of a better word . .. Bush appointees, and Obama cronies.  And when it comes to THIS category, I don’t hear a lot of specific protests.

Want to Occupy Something?  Occupy This — your senators and representatives voted welfare infinite expansion, for private profit actually, into being through public laws.  How could that be?

Well, we have  public school systems that still (apparently) teach U.S. Mythology, not Accounting, that are places for Values & INdoctrination Wars.  Somehow, the importance of the House Ways and Means Appropriations Committee — let alone about how corporations and government actually interact, were not considered pre-requisites for graduation. Meanwhile,  people LIVE in neighborhoods where they can observe this discrepancy, know that the common explanations do not hold water, but may not have a coherent explanation of what does, of what happened (historically).

Moreover, there is a digital divide and closed-doors deliberations.   We are not [certainly anyone ever on welfare is typically not] given or pointed to the best tools to finding out how things work. The cult is of the experts — who teach the uninstructed and presumably not smart enough to “get it.”

The tools available to the unfunded public (like TAGGS) have been also tinkered with, obfuscated and otherwise screwed with, to beyond credibility (accuracy) – although they do reveal traits and patterns to a degree.  TAGGS cannot be reconciled with USASPENDING.gov (and isn’t) even when just looking up HHS grants only on the latter.  I have not made up my mind yet which is more in error, but USASPENDING.gov already has its accuracy critics –and so few people seem to ever USE TAGGS, that leaves me.

Name me ONE other blog or public website that began posting those HHS grantee & project charts before this blog did (earliest, 2009) and recommending their use.  Yet its data goes back to 1995.

Now a point has been made, by the structure AND content of this resource — well read, clearly understood — that this information is NOT reliable; moreover that it’s not reliable — or in really useable form — is no accident.

For example — a big stink since 2001 has been made about laying down the red carpet for (and building capacity for) the faith-based organizations to go help the poor hungry, under-educated slobs get some jobs and visit their sons and daughters, and be taught how to “relate” better to the other parent.

YET — TAGGS has no designation (or classification) for  Faith-based organization.  It’s been 10 years since Bush Executive Order, and the word “faith-based” is all over government (federal state, and nonprofit groups, such as CNCS), other sites — and yet no field has been added to the database to designate “Faith-based” or NOT Faith-based.    The same goes for the fine distinction between “Marriage” grantees and “Fatherhood Grantees.”  yet there is one CFDA (93086) for both — and, moreover, marriage and fatherhood activities could be in, literally, almost any category of federal domestic assistance, such as social welfare research and demonstration, which are NOT under “93086.”  Or in Head Start.  So what’s that about, eh?

Is this really about promoting responsible  “Fatherhood”?  I don’t think so.  Responsible Fathers (note:  this does not include Glenn Sacks or Nicholas Soppa!) like some accountability here and there, and deserve resources to get it, just like others do, and can come to a debate that is not predetermined, and occasionally lose a point or two (i.e. humility).  I don’t know any decent father who’d advocate stealing from the public under false pretenses, and attempting to cover one’s tracks, yet this IS what’s happening.  Or a responsible father helping set up any systems which, after about 53 failures, are still going full force, in the same manner – which many faith-based groups are.  Or which INTENTIONALLY undermines separation of church & state, OR the separation of powers in the federal government — and does so for personal sense of power, fame (or for profit).  Responsible fathers are willing to sacrifice, not specialists in sacrificing others, or what’s right.

this entire responsible fatherhood movement is, essentially (to quote Liz Richards/National Alliance for Family Court Justice, in testimony before the House Ways & Means Committee, Appropriations — in June 2010) – An Expensive Solution looking for a Legitimate Problem:

Protective Mother’s Response to Ways & Means Income Security & Family Support June 17, 2010 hearing for re- reauthorizataion of Responsible Fatherhood program funding.

AN EXPENSIVE REMEDY IN SEARCH OF A LEGITIMATE PROBLEM!

The June 17th 2010 “Responsible Fatherhood” hearing testimony supporting the administration’s reauthorization request for $150,000,000 for a program which has failed to offer any verifiable data on program implementation or specific outcomes, such as the easy to verify job skill training and improved child support compliance factors. Program promoters have become defensive, or hostile, when their operations or intent is questioned. They reject complaints from protective mother advocates who describe serious systemic problems occurring with divorcing and “absent” fathers. In short – the Responsible Fatherhood program advocates have never shown any interest toward the very people who they purport to be helping- divorced or separated mothers of the fathers enrolled in their programs..

Responsible Fatherhood programs have been funded since 1996, but have yet to offer any outcome data or analysis verifying positive impact on mothers and children. Instead they rely on vague claims of involvement of domestic violence specialists to claim [their] activities are not causing mothers any problems. HHS ACF officials confirm they do no requirement for collecting or reporting program enrollment or outcome data.

{Heck, HHS/OIG/OAS can’t even keep track of millions of undistributed child support already collected at the state level, and eschews responsibility for doing so — after all, isn’t it TANF blocks to the states, for flexible use? so long as federal incentives are met for their $2 of ours for $1 of yours, and they get some back, who’s going to rock that boat?  Yet in part it’s from child support enforcement funds that Fatherhood Promotion is done!}

Why should they be getting millions more if they won’t verify the millions already spent are producing positive results, or any other performance or outcome information? Why don’t the fatherhood promoters know anything about the protective mother movement, or show any interest in the concerns of divorcing and separated mothers?

(actually, some of these DO know about this movement and viciously attack it in print and on on-line forums — see Peter Jamison, SFWeekly earlier in 2011)

We believe their data omissions are done deliberately to cover up another agenda – which our members observe and are negatively affected by – which is recruiting dead-beat and abusive men into lucrative high-conflict litigation. I alone have over 2000 victim intake contacts from nearly all US states. NAFCJ has state leaders, in over 15 states collaborate with other protective mother leaders. I have been communicating with fathers’ rights and fatherhood leaders and activist since as early as 1992, have attended their conference and have determined the two movements are one [and] the same.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

LGH Note:   Since last June 2010, I have seem more influences than just the fathers’ rights upon these grant series, but still believe it a valid factor nevertheless at the “street” and HHS etc. level)

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

I note that this 2010 testimony (filed on-line) also refers to the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005:

The US Senator who sponsored the earlier $150,000,000 Responsible Fatherhood earmark in the 2005 deficit Reduction Act has been a fathers rights supporter since he was a state legislator and has been collaborating with the fathers right leader and founder from his state from state since the start. This fathers’ right founder also has collaborated with Dr Richard Gardner on specific case litigation. Gardner’s writings included heinous remarks – such as ( in paraphrase): “mothers who complain about father’s sex abuse of children should be told to get a vibrator and become more sexually responsive to her husband so he won’t have to seek sex from his daughter.” This and other sick and deviant opinions from Gardner and other publish pro-incest men (e.g Ralph Underwager and Warren Farrell) are the reason why Responsible Fatherhood promoters conceal their relationship with the father rights people.

In order for the Responsible Fatherhood promoter to conceal their history of collaborating with the deviant fathers rights movement, they use domestic violence counselor as a “heat shield” to make themselves look pro-woman. But our movement of litigating protective mothers, many of whom have been in domestic violence shelters, have never observed any officially designated fathers representatives collaborating with domestic violence representative or producing and positive actions or outcomes for them. What we do hear from d.v. victim mothers who have gone from her home into shelter with her children – only to be arrested and put into jail a few days later for “kidnapping” the children. Most not allowed any contact with their children, because they are then deemed to be a flight risk. An ex- parte sole custody order is establish for the father is without any notification or hearing for the mother. The d.v. shelter people refuse to support them or testify for the mother and ignore her concerned about the father’s abuse of the children. Many of these falsely arrested mothers don’t see their children again for months {{or years…}} on grounds she is a flight risk. Unfortunately our movement is very dissatisfied with the d.v. movement and believe they also need reforming. However, some of their leaders are working with us to correct this part of the system failure

If I get the rest of the follow-up post out — there is a demonstration of this “heat shield” phenomena — at the “Domestic Violence Coalition” level, typically.

and she also wrote:

All the evidence I’ve observed indicates the Responsible Fatherhood programs are merely a cover for recruiting bad dads with offers of child support abatements into high-conflict litigation, giving sole custody of the children to the father and getting the mother out of picture and forcing her to pay excessive child support obligations to him

Then there are (I learned through the Kentucky example:  “Turning It Around”) the times fathers in arrears were, literally, extorted into participating in programs such as fatherhood classes, parenting skills, self-esteem, ABSTINENCE education (for a father?), and more — which have their promoters throughout the system, usually with a for-profit organization selling the materials behind any nonprofit group.   These are not so many or varied that they are hard to locate and recognize the presence of, any more…

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _OK, enough of that particular angle . . . . . . .

Personal:

My interests and activism took another “sea change” after documenting (some, at least) of the Sea Changes at for example California Healthy Marriage Coalition, which boasted on outset of its programs of THE largest HHS marriage promotion grant yet ($11 million over 5 years).

Again, at the corporate level (California Secretary of State) a search of the words ‘Healthy Marriage” (singular) produces this chart:

Entity Number Date Filed Status Entity Name Agent for Service of Process
C2629035 11/08/2004 SUSPENDED CALIFORNIA STATE HEALTHY MARRIAGE INITIATIVE CHRIS GRIER
C2896098 06/01/2006 ACTIVE FRESNO COUNTY HEALTHY MARRIAGE COALITION, INC., A NONPROFIT PUBLIC BENEFIT CORPORATION ROBYN L ESRAELIAN
C2271911 03/07/2001 DISSOLVED HEALTHY CHALLENGES MARRIAGE, FAMILY AND CHILD COUNSELING PROFESSIONAL CORPORATION ELIZABETH LEHRER
C2884897 06/23/2006 SUSPENDED NATIONAL HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE CENTER DENNIS J STOICA
C2884898 06/23/2006 SUSPENDED ORANGE COUNTY HEALTHY MARRIAGE AND FAMILY COALITION DENNIS J STOICA
C2955473 10/04/2006 SUSPENDED RIVERSIDE HEALTHY MARRIAGE COALITION, INC. LEGALZOOM.COM, INC.
C2650745 05/12/2004 ACTIVE SACRAMENTO HEALTHY MARRIAGE PROJECT CAROLYN RICH CURTIS
C3210304 05/29/2009 ACTIVE SAINTS HEALTHY MARRIAGE PROJECT REGINA GLASPIE
C2860238 03/02/2006 ACTIVE STANISLAUS COUNTY HEALTHY MARRIAGE COALITION JAMES CARLETON STEWARD
C3013354 08/13/2007 ACTIVE YUBA-SUTTER HEALTHY MARRIAGE PROJECT WILLIAM F JENS

and “Healthy Relationship,” this one:

Entity Number Date Filed Status Entity Name Agent for Service of Process
C3073670 01/16/2008 SUSPENDED CALIFORNIA CENTER FOR HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS, INC. LEGALZOOM.COM, INC.
C2746528 05/13/2005 ACTIVE HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS CALIFORNIA PATTY HOWELL
C2790720 06/09/2006 ACTIVE OAKLAND BERKELEY INITIATIVE FOR HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS ** RESIGNED ON 06/20/2011
C2494811 01/06/2003 DISSOLVED THE CENTER FOR HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS, INC. TAMARA ILICH

Meanwhile — as far as the 990 finder (which uses IRS filings) is concerned, the Sacramento Group has indeed changed its name by 2010, and there IS no “California Healthy Marriage” nonprofit around.

Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project Dba Relationship Skills Center CA 2010 $64,938 990 31 13-4280316

Now, on TAGGS, this ONE EIN (13480316) pulls up a slightly smaller set of grants, but two different DUNS# — why? (I put these here for readers to click on)

Recipient Name City State ZIP Code County DUNS Number Sum of Awards
Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project  SACRAMENTO CA 95821 SACRAMENTO 147288935 $ 2,446,593
Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project  SACRAMENTO CA 95821 SACRAMENTO 827612631 $ 1,148,512

  

Showing: 1 – 2 of 2 Recipients


Searching by Principal Investigator “Curtis” (within California) we see some — not all — of the grants:

Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project NON Other Social Services Organization 90FE0015 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION, PRIORITY AREA 7 93086 CAROLYN CURTIS $ 549,256
Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project NON Other Social Services Organization 90FE0015 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION, PRIORITY AREA 7 93086 CAROLYN R CURTIS $ 549,256
Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project Other Social Services Organization 90FE0015 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION, PRIORITY AREA 7 93086 CAROLYN R CURTIS $ 1,647,768
Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project Other Social Services Organization 90IJ0205 COMPASSION CAPITAL FUND (CCF) TARGETED CAPACITY BUILDING PROGRAM – MARRIAGE 93009 CAROLYN CURTIS $ 50,000

and of course the last one, a new award, goes to — “CAROLYN CAROLYN” (i.e., FN FN)

Grantee Name City Recovery Act Indicator Grantee Type Award Number Award Title CFDA Number Principal Investigator Sum of Actions
Sacramento Healthy Marriage Project SACRAMENTO NON Other Social Services Organization 90FM0059 FLOURISHING FAMILIES PROGRAM 93086 CAROLYN CAROLYN $ 798,825

SO, this $3 million plus is going to an organization in Sacramento (California State Capitol) that is not maintaining is nonprofit status with the state of California — is this affecting our budget?  Please also note that of these 5 awards, two are “Recovery” (ARRA) awards — totaling $1,647,768.  In another OMB or GAO report, we found that ARRA awards specifically have been tagged as notoriously NOT paying their still-due payroll and other taxes (even were the nonprofit legitimate):

(posted July 14, 2011 at Patton Boggs, LLP, with the alert that this is general information — and not legal advice)

Federal grant award recipients should carefully review their own federal tax compliance and use vigilance when engaging subrecipients and contractors, based on recent Senate testimony from the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

On May 24, 2011, a GAO representative testified before the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs that thousands of contract and grant recipients under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) owe hundreds of millions of dollars in unpaid federal taxes. The testimony summarized GAO’s April 2011 report of its investigation of 15 entities that had collectively received some $35 million in ARRA funds despite federal tax delinquencies totaling roughly $40 million. GAO referred all 15 entities to the IRS for possible criminal investigation.

ARRA grant award recipients may face risks to their projects stemming from federal tax delinquencies even though, as the GAO acknowledged, federal law does not generally prohibit applicants with unpaid federal tax debts from receiving federal grant awards. With federal debt continuing to climb, and federal spending far outstripping tax revenues, Congress may at least examine changes to the law to impose new restrictions in this area. In addition, in many cases, the tax delinquencies stem from  unpaid payroll taxes, meaning that even entities exempt from federal income taxes may be affected.

The GAO accounts.  It has no teeth.  Congress has to act….  More from the GAO site indicates that groups such as these may be included, i.e., if they don’t includ amounts from groups that have not filed federal tax returns 

At least 3,700 Recovery Act contract and grant recipients–including prime recipients, subrecipients, and vendors–are estimated to owe more than $750 million in known unpaid federal taxes as of September 30, 2009, and received over $24 billion in Recovery Act funds. This represented nearly 5 percent of the approximately 80,000 contractors and grant recipients in the data from Recovery.gov as of July 2010 that we reviewed. The estimated amount of known unpaid federal taxes is likely understated because IRS databases do not include amounts owed by recipients who have not filed tax returns or understated their taxable income and for which IRS has not assessed tax amounts due. 

(Back to TAGGS and our HM grantees)

And the $15 million went to an organization incorporated by Dennis Stoica (in Leucadia) that had its corporate status suspended, as well as the OTHER two organizations he formed, around the same time.   Patty Howell’s nonprofit, who carried on the name — is still associated with the bad behavior (by association) with CHMC’s originals.

Yet the only one of the BUNCH that I can see actually filed (with California, where they are) with the OAG — as required to — was the Sacramento Healthy Marriage (Carolyn Curtis, Ph.D.)

The California Healthy Marriage (Stoica, Suspended) became, somehow “Healthy Relationships California” (Howell) — think Leucadia, San Diego Area.

Meanwhile, the SACRAMENTO HM group (Curtis) — not that its ‘charitable status is, er, current — at least created one with the OAG, which looks like this

(on the actual site, the headings background color would be BLUE).  I am coding it GREEN, to match the PATTY HOWELL group – and indeed, the letter on this site (From the OAG) saying’ hey whassup, is addressed to “Sacramento Healthy Marriage”

Organization Name Registration Number Record Type Registration Status City State Registration Type Record Type
HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS CALIFORNIA CT0149740 Charity Delinquent LEUCADIA CA Charity Registration Charity
1

TAGGS grant for This one, EIN# 6806790  (which I believe I’ve gone over before, at some length) shows:

Recipient Name City State ZIP Code County DUNS Number Sum of Awards
California Healthy Marriages Coalition  LEUCADIA CA 92024-2215 SAN DIEGO 003664535 $ 7,883,475
California Healthy Marriages Coalition  LEUCADIA CA 92024-2215 SAN DIEGO 361795151 $ 7,142,080

Or, in the latest ACF announcement (just to make life a little harder for the novice in all this) as:

Healthy Relationships California

Leucadia

CA

$2,500,000

Which is it not called, any more — on the TAGGS  – – – OR, on the website itself, because Patty Howell’s  actual organization “healthy Relationships” apparently subsequently bought (or, at least claimed) the registered name “California Healthy Marrriage Coalition.”

Website — not that this group is current as a charity in California any more, but at least Ms. Howell’s nonprofit founded JUST a bit earlier than Mr. Stoica’s, saved the day and kept the name — it’s still showing up as:  California Healthy Marriages Coalition and (I see) features a “Dads & Kids” relationship education initiative, …

stating that this is funded in part by:  “Partial funding for this project was provided by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Grant: 90FE0104. “

ward Number: 90FE0104
Award Title: HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION, PRIORITY AREA 1
OPDIV: ADMINISTRATION FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES (ACF)
Organization: OFFICE OF FAMILY ASSISTANCE (OFA)
Award Class: DISCRETIONARY

Award Abstract

Title Healthy Marriage Demonstration, Priority Area 1 
Project Start/End  /
Abstract Healthy Marriage Demonstration, Priority Area 1
PI Name/Title Howell, Patty   Vice President of Operations
Institution

There are 7 award actions (4 of which read “$0”) and the other three (discretionary) $2.3 million & $2.4 + $2.4 million from 2006, 2009 & 2010= $7,142,080.  The grant is labeled “healthy marriage” and “FE” and the use was for Dads & Kids relationship building — which just so happens to be another business Ms. Howell is in.

Quite honestly, I don’t remember now (or feel like checking) whether it was Howell, or Curtis — on both nonprofits, receiving $32K for work on the one, and $7K for work on the other.

HM/FR GRANTEE BEHAVIORS

I am now learning that their behavior is typical — not atypical– for the healthy marriage/responsible fatherhood grantees.  As such, I am starting to comprehend that the entire system wasn’t even nominally set up to promote marriage, but to deconstruct the lines of authority between federal and state, to divert welfare funding SPECIFICALLY from single mothers (who, even when under attack are still a force to be reckoned with) towards fathers, and change language acknowledging us as both mothers and citizens (individuals) with equal rights under the law — which, by the way, we DO have.  But not safely enforceable.

The Child Support monster is just that — and as it feeds gas in to county & state agencies, and (diversionary programs) — it has been spilling, and some of these spills turn into conflagrations where people get hurt.  Men, women and children.   Other than that, it often drains an economy — but DRIVES the bureaucratic economy.  Whatever it may have been, it is now a monster.  It recruits, it solicits — but it does not produce and does not contain viable checks and balances.

WHO VOTED THIS AGENDA IN?  AND WHO PUT THEM IN OFFICE?

I am gradually understanding that it was THE United States Congressmen, and some (not many) women that voted for these laws, from TANF (1996/Clinton), through DRA (2005/Bush) through ARRA (2009/Obama) and through 2010 Claims Resolution Act (also Obama).  It took me a while to realize that these years paralleled the hell extended nightmare of a marriage, followed by what at this point, I’d call worse — because it destroys hope of an off-ramp, EVER, and has definitely altered my family line’s wellbeing — in EVERY measurable category — for the far worse, since we first met the courts.   And people who go through this marginalization tend to listen to others who have; mine is no isolated instance; it’s a systemic situation.

This is relevant history to current history, on its course.   Don’t we want to know who helped set what in motion, and how?  Particularly when history tends to run over the very families (and economy) it is pretending — or purporting — to help?

Normally, this subject matter wouldn’t be on my radar.  It only got there when I demanded a reasonable explanation for a clear double-standard based on gender in what I assumed (wrongly, as it turns out) to be courts of law, i.e., “family courts.”   Of course my opposite gender’s proponents have been saying for decades that these courts are biased against THEIR gender, and must be adjusted to compensate.  They have now (far’s I can tell) been saying this with impunity for FAR too long.

SO — in some detail, and FYI  —

PRWORA 1996, DRA  2005, ARRA 2009 and 2010 Claims Resolution Act.  Slippery slope to evolving definitions of welfare and child support enforcement – incremental tipping of the purposes of TANF from Purpose #1

(1) provide assistance to needy families so that children may be cared for in their own homes or in the homes of relatives

towards Purpose #4 — and then expanding the application of Purpose #4 beyond anyone who might have actually needed the resources from Purpose #1.

(4) encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families. . . .

We are in the new millennium, which kicked off (after surviving the Y2K scare) pretty much with a possibly stolen election, and a King in the form of a President.  Kings, as their manner is, like to rewrite laws, restrict civil liberties, protect their cronies, equate their causes with “godly” causes, and protect THEIR, not the People’s Interest.  Such was definitely true the moment G. W. Bush took office in 2001, being sworn in to office under the same oath as previous Presidents.

The way was paved before him with 1996 Welfare Reform, which granted to states, allegedly, some of the co-dependent power it took from them, by allowing them “flexibility” (Block grants to states for TANF / welfare) to better address the needs of their citizens and reduce the welfare caseload.  If you are not “up” on this then research it some.  Center on Budget & Policy Priorities gives a brief recap.  These are good basic readings if you are, say, living and working in the United States.  Even if you are not doing this as a legal resident, or permanently, it may potentially affect situations such as were found in Seal Beach, California, when the father of a little boy, having 56% custody (despite prior violence, threats, and significant issues that would otherwise alert a reasonable person to danger) — being an ex-Marine — walked into a beauty salon with guns (and a bulletproof vest) and “offed” 6 people in the room (starting with a man, then his wife, then everyone else in there — a 73 yr old mother I heard survived serious wounds — and, who knows why, another innocent man sitting in a parked vehicle outside.  The joint custody policy comes from a combination of groups such as AFCC/CRC AND policies such as set in welfare reform.   These are not isolated incidences; they are recurring incidents (with more or less victims depending on circumstances) and their occurrences has not modified either welfare reform, or AFCC/CRC policy and agenda one whit, that I can see.  So, as a US resident, you will at some level be both funding these policies — and paying for clean up.   This is what we get for not paying closer attention to our legislatures, and doing WHATEVER is necessary to make time to do so, where at all possible!

From the “Center on Budget & Policy Priorities” whose board includes a person from the Brookings Institute, the Urban Institute (and Marian Wright Edelman of Children’s Defense Fund).  This nonprofit was founded in 1981, it says, and focuses on policies regarding low-income families, among other things.  I may not agree with all the viewpoints, but this outlines some of the facts:

They are going to detail some points about 1996 PRWORA, 2005 DRA, 2009 ARRA, and (let’s not forget the most recent, although I don’t know if this details), 2010 Claims Resolution Act

Sooner or later, (I hope), the public is going to wake up and ask just WHAT is its Congress authorizing when it comes to promoting marriage and fatherhood, and taking away from the original purpose of “AFDC” (Aid to Families with Dependent Children), or even the original purpose of TANF (aid to needy families), let alone the original purpose of the Child SUpport Enforcement (which was, child support enforcement).  Whatever the original purposes were — it’s clear which direction things are heading — which expansion of purposes, programs, and applications, and undermining of the ORIGINAL concept to a more circuitous, theory-based concept of how to help feed hungry children, and adult caretakers (including, like, parents?!)  in the households where they live, in America.

Policy Basics — an Introduction to TANF

What Is TANF?

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is a block grant created by the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, as part of a federal effort to “end welfare as we know it.” The TANF block grant replaced the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program, which had provided cash welfare to poor families with children since 1935.

Under the TANF structure, the federal government provides a block grant to the states, which use these funds to operate their own programs. States can use TANF dollars in ways designed to meet any of the four purposes set out in federal law, which are to: “(1) provide assistance to needy families so that children may be cared for in their own homes or in the homes of relatives; (2) end the dependence of needy parents on government benefits by promoting job preparation, work, and marriage; (3) prevent and reduce the incidence of out-of-wedlock pregnancies and establish annual numerical goals for preventing and reducing the incidence of these pregnancies; and (4) encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families.” . . .

The law that created the TANF block grant initially authorized funding through the end of federal fiscal year 2002. After several short-term extensions, Congress reauthorized TANF in the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 and made some modifications to the program;**TANF is now authorized through the end of federal fiscal year 2011 (September 30, 2011).

Who Is Eligible for TANF-Funded Benefits?

States have broad discretion to determine who is eligible for various TANF and MOE-funded benefits and services. In general, states must use the funds to serve families with children, with the only exceptions related to efforts to reduce non-marital childbearing and promote marriage . .

. . .

What Level of Funding Does TANF Provide to the States?

The basic TANF block grant has been set at $16.6 billion since it was established in 1996. As a result, the real value of the block grant has already fallen by about 28 percent.

The 1996 law also created supplemental grants for 17 states with high population growth or low block grant allocations relative to their needy population, as well as a contingency fund to help states weather a recession.** Congress regularly extended these supplemental grants, but the most recent extension covered only three of the four quarters of federal fiscal year 2011, and these grants expired July 1, 2011. This year represents the first time since 1996 that Congress has not fully funded the supplemental grants.

As noted above, states must spend state funds on programs for needy families as a condition of receiving the federal TANF block grant.

(Notice the #1 goal.  However, in Oklahoma, Ohio, other states, the emphasis was on goals 4, 3, 2 & 1, in approximate order, as shown by their policies.  I have blogged on the “OMI” before.

Apparently the DRA (2005) allowed states to categorize “MOE” expenses to NON-needy families (this is a footnote to a 2007 CRS report by the same person, Mr. Gene Falk):

 FN 15 Prior to the enactment of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (DRA, P.L. 109-171) MOE funds used to achieve TANF’s family formation goals were restricted to expenditures on “needy” families with children. The DRA had a provision that allows a state’s total expenditure on activities to achieve these goals to be counted without regard to a family’s need. However, HHS regulations issued on February 5, 2008, limit MOE expenditures related to the family formation goals except for activities related to promoting healthy marriage and responsible fatherhood. (See Appendix, “Families Considered “Engaged in Work” (the Numerator of the Participation Rate)” later in this report for a listing of these activities. For a discussion of this regulatory provision, see Federal Register, vol. 73, no. 24, p. 6517-6318.

THIS, friends, is how one can encounter divorce or custody cases in which one side is a millionaire, but still benefitting from the priorities these programs set up in the courtroom, i.e. promoting more noncustodial (meaning father) parenting time by means of — supervised visitation, counseling, mediation, parent education, etc.  Court-referrals..

Using Federal TANF Grants

Federal TANF grants may be used for a wide range of benefits and services for families with children. Grants may be used within a state TANF program or transferred to either the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF, the “child care block grant”) or the Social Services Block Grant (SSBG). Unused TANF funds can also be reserved (saved), without fiscal year limit.12

FN12 Before the enactment of the ARRA, reserved funds could only be used for the purpose of providing “assistance” (often, cash welfare). The ARRA eliminated this restriction to the use of reserve funds, so that reserve funds can be used to provide any allowed TANF benefit or service.

**what Oklahoma did with its contingency fund, and other states (or certain appointees in other states) seem to like this model.  The ACF/HHS site mentions Oklahoma Marriage Initiative  as a model of how to use MOE funds, after first asserting that:

Healthy marriages are vitally important to the long term well-being of children. Beyond the economic advantages important for supporting children, the experiences and examples shown to children being raised by parents who enjoy a loving and long-term commitment yields tremendous developmental benefits for children. Forming and sustaining a happy and healthy marriage requires, in part, good fortune and, in larger part, parents possessing the knowledge and commitment to exercise healthy relationship skills that form the basis of healthy marriages.

(From the Director of HHS’s Office of Family Assistance, year, 2004.)

Certainly inherited wealth, circumstances of birth including where and to whom — have little to do with this; really, it’s about skills moreso.  Therefore, forget those other factors, let’s focus on the “healthy relationship skills” Well said, from an organization that distributes, but apparently doesn’t track too well, the funds!

Since the inception of PRWORA, Oklahoma has capitalized on the flexibility of TANF funds by investing $10 million in the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative (OMI). OMI was established under the third and fourth statutory purposes of TANF. OMI currently delivers marriage and relationship training statewide through social service systems, educational systems and volunteer organizations. Participants access training in diverse settings such as workforce development classes, high schools, military bases, prisons, first time offender programs, churches, universities and many more. In 2003, Oklahoma reported{{who checked??}}  that 938 workshops were conducted, serving 1,250 participants and training 1,200 individuals to provide future workshops. For additional information on Oklahoma’s Marriage Initiative please visit:http://www.okmarriage.org/services/healthyrelationships.asp

As I blogged before, the Governor of Oklahoma pushed this one from the top, with help from “expert speakers” and the head of his HHS, who pointed out there was TANF money sitting around.

The economic researchers found some social indicators that were hurting Oklahoma’s economy. They mentioned the high divorce rate, high rates of out-of-wedlock births and high rates of child deaths because of child abuse. One OSU economist wrote in an editorial, “Oklahoma’s high divorce rate and low per-capita income are interrelated. They hold hands. They push and pull each other. There’s no faster way [in Oklahoma!] for a married woman with children to become poor than to suddenly become a single mom.”

(Child abuse, of course doesn’t happen within marriages, and abuse of one’s kids is not a cause of divorce.) Then “Governor and First Lady’s (day-long) Conference on Marriage” with speaker..

(See, as recounted on a “smartmarriages.com” list-serv in 1999, how Gary Smalley & Wade Horn of the NFI were there…”Marriages must be strengthened for the sake of America’s children”

Theodora Ooms with the Family Impact Seminar in Washington
D.C. called the marriage conference historic. "You are pioneers here in
Oklahoma. I have been trying for ten years in Washington D.C. to get this
on the agenda and get some money to work on this issue and no one in
Washington will talk about it.

The Conference also included breakout sessions with attendees discussing
how the various sectors can work together and how government policy can
also impact the success of marriages. Among the items discussed:

Tax laws-possibly eliminating marriage penalty
Possible repeal of no fault divorce
Public education- emphasize the positive aspects of marriage to young people
  • Covenant marriages
  • Emphasis on premarital counseling, possibly even legally requiring it
  • Making laws more “family friendly”
  • e laws
  • The Governor and First Lady¼s Conference on Marriage was facilitated by
  • Jerry Regier, the Governor¼s Cabinet Secretary for Health and Human
  • Services. It was privately funded by several groups and individuals,
including the Burbridge Foundation and the Baptist General Convention.

Good grief.   the Baptist General Convention got with the Governor and helped propose taking welfare funds to promote marriage,

since their own Sunday Sermons weren’t persuasive enough?  That’s “ripe.”

BURBRIDGE INFO (random, from Internet) — PART 1:

Burbridge Foundation, I’m going to look up, obviously.  From “TheLostOgle.com” (apparently some Oklahomans having some fund poking fun at their state, although I note, “*.com”)  This foundation was #93 on the top 100 most embarrassing things about Oklahoma (from 2007, its centenary?):

Top 100 Oklahoma Embarrassments: 100-91

Posted on Monday, July 16th, 2007 under Best of OKCDean BlevinsOKC Music,Oklahoma City AlumniOklahoma City MediaOklahoma City RadioThe Sports Animal,Top 100 Oklahoma Embarrassments by Tony

For the eight of you out there who didn’t realize it, 2007 marks the 100th anniversary of the state of Oklahoma. To mark this, various publications around the state have been featuring all sorts of Top 100 lists that have provoked virtually no controversy and have not been talked about at the water cooler. In fact, we’ve heard so little discussion about these lists that we wonder if anyone is actually reading them. We sure don’t.

It does seem, though, that the focus has been on the more positive elements of Oklahoma. While we celebrate those things just like the rest of the world, it seems wrong to ignore the more humiliating aspects of the state of Oklahoma. Naturally, we’re here to fill that void, in this ten-part series that will run every Monday. Today, numbers 91 through 100 of Oklahoma’s Biggest Embarrassments..

. . .

93. Bobbie Burbridge Lane

Those commercials for the Burbridge foundation are possibly the most annoying thing on local radio, which is saying something. When listening to Burbridge Lane lecture us about pornography or religion being taken out of public schools or whatever the pet issue of the day is, we’re convinced that Burbridge Lane wants to return the United States to the 1950′s, which probably sucked really bad. 

There’s usually some truth on the heels of humor, and this one rings true:

BURBRIDGE INFO (random, from Internet) — PART 2:  Could THIS be why The Burbridge Foundation is so big on Marriage (dates to 1974).

(read for comic relief): (from “law.justia.com”)

496 F.2d 326: The Burbridge Foundation, Inc., Appellant,

v. Reinholdt & Gardner et al., Appellees

Robert E. Hornberger, Fort Smith, Ark., for appellant.

G. Alan Wooten, Harper, Young & Smith, Fort Smith, Ark., for appellees.

Before VAN OOSTERHOUT, Senior Circuit Judge, and LAY and ROSS, Circuit judges.

PER CURIAM.

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit. – 496 F.2d 326

Submitted March 14, 1974.Decided May 15, 1974

. . .(The present suit is basically an action in rem seeking relinquishment of certain stocks held by the stakeholders, Reinholdt & Gardner. The Foundation’s memorandum in the trial court stated that ‘the relief specifically sought is the return and delivery to The Burbridge Foundation of its stock deposited with that defendant (Reinholdt & Gardner). …

Upon registry of a personal judgment arising from a divorce decree, Velma Jean Holloway, formerly Velma Jean Burbridge, obtained a writ of garnishment from the Chancery Court of Sebastian County, Arkansas, against Reinholdt & Gardner, a stock brokerage firm, to attach any stocks belonging to her former husband, R. O. Burbridge. The brokerage firm denied holding any stock in Burbridge’s name, but admitted it had an account in the name of The Burbridge Foundation. The Burbridge Foundation intervened in the state court proceedings. Shortly thereafter, The Foundation brought suit in the federal district court against Reinholdt & Gardner, seeking recovery of the stocks. In its complaint, The Foundation made the same allegations it raised as intervenor in state court, i.e., that the stocks belonged to it and not R. O. Burbridge personally. In addition The Foundation for the first time asserted that the Arkansas garnishment statute was unconstitutional in that it sought to deprive The Foundation of its property without due process of law.1 Reinholdt & Gardner answered that it could not relinquish the stocks until ordered to do so by a court of competent jurisdiction. The Holloways2 intervened in the federal action and moved to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The district court sustained the motion to dismiss. The Burbridge Foundation appeal.  (and apparently lost).

(SMILE): [2]Russell B. Holloway was the divorce attorney for Velma Jean Burbridge (now Holloway) and was awarded $12,000 in attorney’s fees. He was also a party to the state garnishment suit
So, Velma Jean divorced Mr. Burbridge, eventually married her divorce attorney, and seems to have gotten some of his stock, too, this being 1974;
So in 2000, here is this Burbridge Foundation sponsoring a let’s support marriage (and potentially institute covenant marriage / eliminate no-fault divorce, etc.) in Oklahoma.  Moral:  There is usually a back story to most public policy, somewhere . ..   and more than not, based in someone’s personal issues.  But wealth & power tends to think large (how do we think they got wealthy & powerful in the first place?), and the rest of the world should conform to their  theories…

BURBRIDGE INFO (Random, from internet) PART 3:   Self-description on website:

The Burbridge Foundation is a Christian foundation dedicated to working solutions to problems impacting our families and our culture. We do this by bringing public awareness to these problems, by working alongside other faiths and concerned citizens interested in strengthening the fabric of our community character, and by providing leadership support to organizations of like vision.

Is sponsoring a meeting/conference with the Governor which then results in him intentionally bypassing the Legislator to get this Marriage Promotion Process going — “Christian”??

From OMI site:

  • Governor Keating was aware that his support of a marriage promotion agenda was controversial and would not be immediately popular.
  • As evidence of his serious commitment to this issue, Keating put his Cabinet Secretary for Health and Human Services, Jerry Regier, in charge of developing a plan of action for the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative.  (after committing funds from HHS)  In addition, Public Strategies (PSI), a small public affairs/public relations firm, was awarded a project management bid and, from the beginning, national experts advised various aspects of the Initiative. {{We showed who some of these were, including Wade Horn of National Fatherhood Initiative}} This leadership outlined the main themes and components of the OMI. They deliberately decided not to appoint a Commission to “study” the issues, nor did they propose a legislative package of reforms. 

At the legislative level, they might have faced a fight, and been forced to justify — TO OKLAHOMA RESIDENTS — the diversion of TANF emergency funds to marriage promotion!

I looked up Jerry Regier, and Voice of Freedom (albeit a gay rights publication?) says “Gov. Bush’s Appointment Of Jerry Regier For The Dept Of Children & Families Is More Than A Right-Wing Extremist; He Leaves A Record Of Increased Child Abuse & Neglect” (apparently from OK he was going — courtesy of the brother of then-President George Bush — to FL).  Look at the commentary: (color:  TEAL)

And what we found is not good for the children and families of Florida. Here is what Oklahoma Governor did not tell Jeb:

August 24, 1999: Secretary for Health and Human Services Jerry Regier is violating both the spirit and the letter of a new state law in his zeal to hasten the downsizing of Eastern State Hospital in Vinita

Sept. 20, 2000: Health and Human Services Secretary Jerry Regier is trying to dodge responsibility for recent problems

April 11, 2001: Associate Press: State Office of Juvenile Affairs charged the state and federal government $1.2 million more than it was eligible to receive during a period of 19 months. Jerry Regier, secretary of HHS, said that once a program is in place, an acceptable error rate would probably be 5 percent or less. Last fiscal year, Oklahoma County had an error rate of 59.2 percent. Tulsa County’s error rate was 26 percent

April 12, 2001: Regier Skirts Competitive Bidding Laws – A controversial political consultant was awarded more than $1.2 million in state contracts without having to compete for the business, according to state records.

(this seems to be a hallmark of certain faith-based groups; I’m thinking of the Governor’s Office of Faith-Based (whatnots) in Ohio, re:  Krista Sisterhen.  It’s all over the web; she was there 2003-2006; eliminated otherwise qualified groups to get a contract to a group (formed only in 2000 and not in-state) called “WeCare” which then screwed up.  And — had ties to Bush Administration. )

Oklahoma KIDS COUNT Fact Book 2001:
     Reveals that 2 key benchmarks tracked worsened when compared to data from a dozen years ago:

  • Child abuse & neglect
  • More than fifteen thousand (15,518) are abused or neglected
  • More than two hundred thousand (210,470) Oklahoma children live in poverty an increase since 1998 (Regier took office in 1997)
    This brief synopsis points to an administrator whose track record is not favorable for the task at hand. Although he received honors as a good administrator, the fact that child neglect and abuse increased while he was HHS Director demonstrates a lack for a sense of priorities, in this case the welfare of our children. Florida does not need more scandal; downsizing or political mismanagement in the Department of Children and Families, Regier has got to go! 

By

  • Initial activities were funded with private foundation monies and discretionary state dollars. Howard Hendrick, Department of Human Services (DHS) Director, pointed out that using TANF monies to fund the initiative fit within the intent of the family formation goals of the 1996 federal welfare reform law. {{YES — as I said, of the four purposes, it as purpose #4 only}} The DHS Board set aside $10 million of undedicated TANF funds for OMI activities. The funds were earmarked primarily for developing marriage-related services, and leaders acknowledged that efforts should be made to make them available to low-income populations.

TANF was at this time FOR low-income populations.   FOR helping children be cared for in their own households, as much as possible.  For leaders to say “well TRY to offer them to low-income populations” while targeting the entire state of Oklahoma — NOT the needy populations  (not all of who is poor, but obviously many of who have been divorcing) is OFF-purpose.   $10 million is a LOT of money to set aside, to some families.  How many mouths would’ve been fed, for sacrifice of rhetoric?

  • Thus, the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative was launched and has grown to become the broad-based social service prevention project that it is today.

More on REGIER — guess where he was in December 2006?  Sitting as “US Department of Health and Human Services Washington, DC 20201

Jerry Regier, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation” {{ASPE == a Program Office or OpDiv of HHS }}and writing a glowing recommendation of the OMI.  In this brochure (which has his name on it), it says that Jerry Regier — as Cabinet Head of HHS — prodeed the Governotr to get this started, citing specifically 1996 TANF reform.  The economic studies were secondary…. 

Nearly eight years ago, Oklahoma’s then-Cabinet Secretary for Health and Human Services, Jerry Regier, encouraged then-Governor Frank Keating to take action to strengthen Oklahoma’s families, in response to emerging research and the increased emphasis on two- parent families in the 1996 federal welfare reform legislation.

So the REAL question is — where was Regier before this, and how did he get to be in the Cabinet Position in Oklahoma?

This Brief is a good (short read) showing that when the TANF-Reformers come to town (carrying NFI-ideas), they are going to force system change.  For example, the system change in Oklahoma was definitely focused on pushing MARRIAGE to people from ALL sectors of life — not alleviating poverty and helping poor or needy families.  Moreover, there was a connection somehow, to the Denver Crowd (who produced PREP).

The brief comes right from ACF.HHS.GOV/healthy marriage site. In the flow chart, a central square reads ” PRIORITY 2:”  BUILD DEMAND FOR SERVICES”

and from that, arrows to 3 boxes, the top one of which reads:  “TRAIN AGENCIES (like child support!) TO MAKE REFERRALS”

OK (I think I have it).  First, Jerry Regier was formerly president of the ultraconservative “Family Research Council” prior to Oklahoma

But this report (2004) from Florida — where it seems he went next — is scathing, and — in short — read it.    I can’t say it more emphatically.

  • How could Bush not have seen this mess coming? Regier was a GOP party
    hack in Oklahoma with an undistinguished track record in the family
    services bureaucracy. An ultraconservative Christian, his byline had
    turned up on two published papers that espoused spanking kids, even if
    it caused “welts and bruises.”
A scalding report by the governor’s chief inspector general has
revealed that high-ranking DCF officials handed out fat and dubious
contracts to pals and political cronies, and accepted gifts, favors
and lodging from outside contractors.

As a result, three of Regier’s top administrators have quit, and
Regier himself has been reduced to defending his own outrageous
socializing with a DCF contractor.

It’s much more than the mere “appearance of impropriety.” It is the
greedy, rotten essence of impropriety — profiteering at the expense of
Florida’s neediest and most vulnerable children.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars that could have been spent hiring
more caseworkers and investigators were instead doled out to
well-connected firms as part of Regier’s rush to “privatize”
child-welfare services.

In recent weeks, the Miami Herald’s Carol Marbin Miller has documented
the DCF gravy train in infuriating detail. A few of the lowlights:

  • A $21 million contract to fix DCF’s computer system was awarded to
  • American Management Services, although another company had been ranked
  • first after the initial screening process.
  • The lobbyist for American Management happened to be Greg Coler, a
  • former chief of the state child-welfare agency and a close friend of
  • Regier. Sitting on American Management’s board of directors was former
  • Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating — the man who recommended Regier for the
  • DCF job in Florida.

—DCF Deputy Secretary Ben Harris gave out a $500,000 no-bid contract,
split between two of his friends, for computer ‘‘kiosks’’ that
dispense food stamps.

ACTUALLY — WIKIPEDIA pretty much lays it out.  Jerry Regier worked for the elder Bush administration.  Best read in sequence:  (and I now have a 20,000 word post, too….)

Includes this section:

Family Research Council

Regier, in cooperation with Dr. James Dobson, founded the Family Research Council, a conservative, Christian right group and lobbying organization, in 1983. Regier served as that organization’s first President from 1984 until 1988. Gary Bauer, a domestic policy advisor under President Ronald Reagan, succeeded Regier as President.

Federal government career

President Ronald Reagan appointed Regier in 1988 to the National Commission on Children, an advisory body in the United States Department of Health and Human Services on children’s issues. Reagan’s successor,George H.W. Bush, reappointed Regier in 1991. Regier continued to serve on the Commission until 1993.

(SIGH — I looked up “Family Research Council” and found among its board members, the mother of the man tied to Blackwater, and a board member of

The Council on National Policy among other things — here it goes, a 2008 “Muckety Site” (visual diagram of relationships).  This relates to tracking down a single person influential in starting

the “Oklahoma Marriage Initiative” (Jerry Regier), learning of his former Bush & FRC connections, and looking up FRC.  WHich just goes to show, when is it time to stop!?)

Story by Laura Bennett, Oct. 2008, posted at “Muckety” under “Erik Prince’s Mom gives $450,000 to stop same-sex marriage in California

I’m less concerned about that than the Blackwater connection, who else this woman is funding.  See Diagram:

Focus on the Family (one of the followers) figured in my life personally, exacerbating already virulent abuse, to the point that I ended up quitting a FT night job, that had been supporting our family.  I’m talking WHILE I was married.  My husband loved James Dobson, and listened to his stuff also

Speaking as a heterosexual Christian — I don’t know WHO these guys are — they do not do a resemblance of what I see in the Bible; and in person, and in influence are virtually terroristic to women.  If I’d NOT been a Christian, I’d probably have bailed out of the marriage much faster — and this might (not sure, but MIGHT) have been better for our kids.  When I hear WHO is behind some of these groups (years later) it somewhat validates the personal experiences (not mine only) that they are essentially domestic terrorists — unless one submits willingly.

Two Voices from a while back warn us on this movement:  Patricia Ireland, (NOW) and Rev. Jesse Jackson, Jr. Both are responding to the Promise Keepers’ “Stand in the Gap” rally on the Washington Mall.  Listen to them!  ”

We are talking, 1997!….(I don’t have the date of Rev. Jesse Jackson’s speech).

Recently, hundreds of thousands of religious American males were on display at the Promise Keepers‘ “Stand In The Gap” rally in the nation’s capitol. What could possibly be wrong with men bonding, praying and pledging to be better Christians, with the goal of becoming better and more responsible husbands and fathers, and active in their local church? Nothing that I can see.

There is certainly nothing wrong with men exercising their First Amendment rights to peaceably assemble and to enjoy the freedoms of speech and religion. There is absolutely nothing wrong with acknowledging that we have done wrong, we recognize our weaknesses,confess our sins before God and the public and vow, with God’s help, to change our ways, to do better and to be better men in the future. The genuineness and validity of the religious experience for any of the participants, and any long-range good that comes from it, must be affirmed and respected.

There is nothing wrong with any of that, if that’s all there is to it.

(and he goes to accurately characterize the group):

Women now want to be priests, pastors and preach in pulpits. These demands come from a feminist and womanist theology and biblical interpretation born of experiences of denial and oppression from conservative and non-liberating Christian men.

As Christians, we all read the same Bible, but our biblical interpretations are born of our varied life experiences. It was Martin Luther’s experiences with Roman Catholicism that led to a critique (95 Theses) that began the Protestant Reformation. Similar experiences have led to modern critiques and new interpretive contributions of scripture and theology that run all the way from the birth of our nation — a theology that gave us a liberal democratic and constitutionally-based government to replace a traditional, conservative and God-based Monarchy— to a Latin American-oriented liberation theology; to an African American-originated “Black” theology; to a female-led feminist and womanist theology; to a gay and lesbian theology; all of which respect all religions, advocate for human rights and equal protection under the law for all regardless of race, national origin, sex or sexual orientation, and all of which are liberation theologies reflecting a God of the oppressed.

The Promise Keepers deny the legitimacy of most, if not all, of these theological and biblical interpretations that have grown out of experiences of oppression, and resent our commitment to not go back –theologically, biblically, socially, politically or culturally.

QUITE FRANKLY — this is where a lot of “Christian Domestic Violence” (contradiction in terms – the false term there is “Christian”) comes from — it is an outraged insistence on previously inherent male dominance.  Enforced physically and all other kinds of ways, and acknowledged by the male bonding in surrounding institutions, and well-tamed females in them also.  This is why I no longer frequent — or even darken the door of — churches, if I can help it.  Maybe for a music event — not for worship, not for socializing, and not for any form of support.  Life is too short.

That which, in the past, has been identified as “religious” and “Christian” has not always been liberating and quite often has been oppressive. In South Africa it was the Dutch Reformed Christian Church that provided the religious foundation for apartheid. In the United States’ South it was the Southern Baptists and other mainline churches that practiced and theologically justified slavery and Jim Crow. The Ku Klux Klan identifies itself as a Christian organization. It was white Christian ministers who attacked Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Birmingham, Alabama for fighting racism that brought forth his “Letter From A Birmingham Jail.” At our foundation, good Christian men owned slaves and defined African Americans as three-fifths human in our Constitution, they committed genocide against Native Americans and stole their land, and they denied women the right to vote. In Congress today,many who call themselves religious and Christian, vote against laws to provide food, health care, housing, jobs, education and an equalopportunity to millions of Americans. There’s an old Negro Spiritual that speaks to this point. It says, “Everybody talkin’ ’bout heaven ain’t goin’ there.”

The Promise Keepers’ answer to that very real problem is not to look to the future with hope and confidence, confronting the changes needed and reinterpreting male identity in terms of gender equality. Instead, Promise Keepers try to give men identity and, therefore, security, by returning to a familiar past. Their preaching and teaching, mostly subliminal, though not exclusively so, was to reveal a fear of that future. The Promise Keeper answer is to retreat and recapture this biblical past.

SO NOW HERE COMES THIS REVELATION — OF THE CONNECTION BETWEEN FOCUS ON THE FAMILY (Types) and BLACKWATER.  I  can’t say I’m really surprised.

And I do believe — especially seeing the Bush/Regier/OMI/FRC (etc.) connections that when we are looking at any Healthy Marriage / Responsible Fatherhood grant, program, or initiative — even though there may be innocent and sincere participants — this is the essence of what we are seeing — which is the intent to dominate, control, force to submit, and (this being a necessary means to dominate in a country with a Bill of Rights — to force institutions to line up, removing the due process and civil rights, permanently.

(to be continued)

(ELSA PRINCE) Broekhuizen is the mother of Erik D. Prince, founder of Blackwater Worldwide, the controversial operation that provides security services to federal officials in Iraq and other countries. Her daughter, Betsy DeVos, is a former Michigan GOP chair and wife of failed gubernatorial candidate Dick DeVos.

Broekhuizen’s first husband, Edgar, founded an auto parts company that was sold after his death for $1.4 billion. She later married her pastor, Ren Broekhuizen.

An assistant told the Grand Rapids Press that Broekhuizen gave to the campaign because the issue is “very important to her. It’s near and dear to her heart. She likes to give from her heart and not for public recognition.”

Broekhuizen heads the Edgar and Elsa Prince Foundation, which had assets of more than $42 million in 2006 (the last year for which tax returns are publicly available). The foundation and Broekhuizen personally are longtime supporters of religious organizations and conservative political groups such as the Haggai Institute, Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council.

BURBRIDGE FOUNDATION — A CHRISTIAN FOUNDATION — helped this happen, then.  Make a note of it, because this was wrong!

We continue to work across the country with individuals and organizations combating the scourge of pornography – a deadly and often underestimated cancer assaulting the family. For information on the “WRAP Campaign” and other information on fighting porn go to www.moralityinmedia.org.

Our current effort focuses on Christian leadership development. In 2007, we reached out to several Oklahoma City Christian lay leaders with a vision for the creation of “salt and light leadership training” to leaders of this and other cities. This has now become the “SALLT Fellowship” which can be found at www.saltandlightleadership.com.

Soli Deo Gloria  (Latin: to God only be Glory; JS Bach used to sign his manuscripts with this, hear tell)

“We are not a direct grant-giving organization.”
Also at the same street address is “Character First”

Our Approach

Character First is a professional development and character education program that is delivered many ways—training seminars, books, magazines, curriculum, email—that focus on real-life issues at work, school, home, and the community.

Gee, then why might they NOT sponsor such a conference with the Governor on curriculum-based ways to strengthen marriages?

Communities & Character Councils

Character First works with government leaders and community organizations around the world who want to promote character on a local basis.

[[website says “Character First” began in 1992 at an Oil & Gas-servicing company called “Kimray”]]

To do this, many communities form a “Character Council” (often a non-profit, non-religious charitable organization) to promote character in all sectors of a community—including business, government, education, law enforcement, media, the faith community, and families.

The following communities have taken various steps toward promoting character, such as passing resolutions, forming character councils, implementing Character First, and organizing special events.

AND also at this address (3rd organization):
Strata Leadership, LLC is a small consulting firm located in Edmond, Oklahoma focused on helping individuals and organizations succeed.

Strata Leadership, LLC.

And here is where we see some Dispute Resolution background, familiar in the anti-divorce courtrooms around AFCC personnel as well:

hrough Strata’s partnerships with other organizations such as Character First!, our team consists of nearly 15 full-time employees.  Strata is led by our executive leadership team of Strata President, Dr. Nathan Mellor and Executive Vice-President, Wayne Whitesell.

[Photo of young-looking Caucasian guy]

Dr. Nathan Mellor is a co-owner and president of Strata.  He is a popular speaker who makes 125-175 presentations per year across America and around the globe.  He has spoken in over  states and in countries such as: Australia, Belize, Guyana, Jordan, Mexico, Russia and Rwanda.

Dr. Mellor holds the Bachelor of Arts (BA) and the Master of Science in Education (MSE) degrees fromHarding University. He earned the Master of Dispute Resolution (MDR) degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law – Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution and the Doctor of Education (EDD) in Organizational Leadership degree from Pepperdine University.

STrata’s Partners (at least 2 at the same address):

Strata is proud to partner with and promote the work of the following friends:

Copyright © 2009 Strata Leadership, L.L.C. All rights reserved.

Products — pricey!

The “other” sponsors of the Governor and First Lady’s year 2000 Conference are not mentioned, but I think we get the general idea…

Choice quote:

Even with a lack of comprehensive data about why the problem exists, the research information clearly demonstrates that something must be done. (: (:
OK -- just DO something -- and afterwards, maybe, look for actual cause & effect connections....  "Lack of Comprehensive Data"
* According to data provided by the CDC, Oklahoma has the 2nd highest
divorce rate in the nation, by state of residence.
   Only Arkansas has a worse divorce rate.
- Only 14% of white women who married in the early 1940's eventually
divorced, whereas almost half of white women who married in the late
1960's and early 1970's have already become divorced. For African-American
women, the figures are 18% and nearly 60%
Presumably some men, then, also divorced.  Any stats about them??  Go figures -- a NFI participatory event is going to
talk about the women! (behind their backs, too).

It’s Oklahoma!  Notice, the emphasis on divorce rate, by race.   …   Here, amazingly, is the 2002 Testimony of that Director of HHS for OK:

United State Senate Finance Committee Thursday, May 16, 2002 10:00 A.M.

Room 215 Dirksen Senate Office Building

Issues in TANF Reauthorization: Building Stronger Families

Testimony of Howard H. Hendrick Oklahoma Cabinet Secretary of Health and Human Services and Director, Oklahoma Deparment of Human Services

Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, thank you for the privilege of appearing today to share the genesis and status of Oklahoma’s strategy to strengthen marriages and reduce divorce. In Oklahoma, we are spending TANF funds for this purpose because the research clearly shows that child well-being is enhanced when children are reared in two parent families where the parents have a low conflict marriage. …

(Governor Keating):   He hosted the nation’’s first ““Governor and First Lady’’s Conference on Marriage”” in March, of 1999. Based on the information learned there, Oklahoma’’s Marriage Initiative was launched. The Governor took key steps to ensure that the goal of reducing divorce and strengthening marriage was more than simply a political statement. Specifically the governor:

␣ Took the bold step of setting a specific, measurable goal – to reduce divorce in Oklahoma by 1/3 by the year 2010.

Question:  What right does any Governor have to even TRY and do this?  (Notice, by this time both houses of US Congress had already voted National Resolutions to Support Fatherhood:  1998, 1999).  By 2002, they had already chosen a curriculum, “PREP(r).”  This curriculum, well — as 2002 testimony says:

We selected PREP® (the Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program) as the state’’s curriculum because of its research basis and its evaluation record. It is a curriculum that has been used in the military for many years. PREP can be tailored to a variety of constituencies and the long-term efficacy of the twelve hours of education has been validated in a variety of research settings.

We are presently in the training stage of implementing the service delivery system. These skills are beginning to be offered in workshops throughout Oklahoma. The training includes identifying substance abuse risks and presentations by the Oklahoma Coalition against Domestic Violence. . .

(Concluding statement):

Based on what we’’ve learned so far, we continue to support the use of TANF funds to fund activities that strengthen families by growing healthy marriages.

GROWING HEALTHY MARRIAGES?  Then, literally, they are farming their populace — which is objectionable!

The input of “Theodore Ooms” of “Family Impact Seminars” was noted.  Here is the “Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars (PINFIS).  “Surprisingly” it is funded by many of the responsible fatherhood grantees I have come to recognize over the years, such as the Annie E. Casey Foundation:

The Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars aims to strengthen family policy by connecting state policymakers with research knowledge and researchers with policy knowledge. The Institute provides nonpartisan, solution-oriented research and a family impact perspective on issues being debated in state legislatures. We provide technical assistance to and facilitate dialogue among professionals conducting Family Impact Seminars in 28 sites across the country. If you are a PINFIS Affiliate, please click here to login.

The Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars is currently funded by the W. K. Kellogg Foundation and the William T. Grant Foundation. Past supporters include the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Copyright © 1993-2011. Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy.

26 States + D.C. get seminars from this Wisconsin-based (presumably nonprofit) group based at UW-Madison/Extension.  “The Seminars target state policymakers, including legislators, legislative aides, governor’s office staff, legislative service agency staff, and agency representatives. The traditional format of the 2-hour seminars consists of three 20-minute presentations given by a panel of premier researchers, program directors, and policy analysts. For each seminar, discussion sessions are held and a background briefing report summarizes high-quality research on the issue in a succinct, easy-to-understand format.”

UMichigan reveals they’ve had 16 Family Impact Seminars since 2000— and that the Kellogg Foundation is helping them receive this also.  This 2000 report, on one page sites a survey of “9 barriers to employment that single mothers face” and doesn’t mention — domestic violence at all.  However, on page 17, in a page dedicated to Domestic Violence, the two authors note:

Background Data and Research

Families who experience domestic violence are often also victims of poverty. Studies examining the association between domestic violence and poverty have found:

 Of current welfare recipients in Michigan, 63% have experienced physical abuse and 51% have experienced severe physical abuse during their lifetimes[12].

• Physical abuse/being afraid of someone was cited as the primary cause of homelessness (in a survey of homeless adults in Michigan) [7].

• Half of homeless women and children report being victims of domestic violence [5,7].

AND,. . . . well, here is the rest of the page:

These barriers consist of:

• Psychological effects of domestic violence (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, depression, or anxiety)

• Sabotage by the abuser (destroying homework assignments, disabling cars and alarm clocks, interference with child care efforts, or harassment at work)

• Manipulation by the abuser (leaving marks and/or bruises that prevent the woman from attending work or an interview, or undermining self-confidence

These employment barriers can lead to tardiness, absenteeism and lack of productivity. Research shows that between 23% and 42% affected by domestic violence report that the abuse had an impact on their work performance [4,5,12].

A study conducted by the University of Michigan suggests that domestic violence by itself is not a barrier to employment,** but that the more barriers one has, the more difficult it is to leave welfare for work [2]. Further research is needed on multiple barriers to employment resulting from domestic violence.

**personal.  True, it’s possible to work — at times, and as allowed by an abuser — with domestic violence.  I have done many things competently immediately after and immediately preceding devastating attacks, some physical, some threats, some involving threats to our children, and once even after they were removed illegally, overnight, and despite law enforcement having been alerted to the threat shortly (same season) before.  Yes it is possible, depending on the person and the relationship, to hold down a job or series of jobs and simply take the abuse at home going or coming.  But, over long-term, the violence does escalate, and a person has to take action on it.  And it DOES cut down on productivity.   It is also possible to work, and in a relationship, not be able to spend the proceeds from one’s own work on one’s kids’ welfare.  Also because work tends to empower women, with men threatened with that independence, it is sometimes a time of increased harm, as he’s torn between wanting the money from that work, but realizing that “his” woman is going to have some work relationships he may not be able to utterly control.

A recent study found that approximately 70% of domestic violence victims did not disclose the abuse to their TANF caseworkers [10]. The same study found that 75% of those that did reveal information about the violence did not receive the appropriate support or services. These results imply that without the proper services, many victims of domestic violence and their children are forced to return home to their abuser.

(from page “Domestic Violence and Poverty Deborah Satyanathan and Anna Pollack”)

In a climate (see Oklahoma Marriage Initiative) where the powers that be believe — or say they do — that it’s lack of marriage (and not really, violence in marriages or other forms of abuse impacting work & home life) causing poverty, the only alternative individuals have, who are caught up in that — is to request the state to honor its laws against such abuse.  If the state, based on ITS own decisions made with help from The National Fatherhood Initiative and others, based on their theories — chooses to overstep Executive Authority, as Governor Keating of OK specifically intended to, and did, do — then he just weakened the very state (as a member of states under the US Constitution — at least at some time in the past century or two, we were) in the name of “strengthening families.”

This Study quotes the “Center for Budget & Policy Priorities” I cite also for a TANF summary (above).  They cite 4 barriers to work, NONE of which applied to many of the women I knew in DV support groups in the 1990s and have known since (to this day) in custody battles for their children, in the 2000s, where judicial discretion wins the day, and judges sit on the boards of nonprofits taking business from access visitation and other TANF-funded activities!   This study from a group named in influencing the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative, relates:

Four of the major barriers identified by analysts at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities include [2]:

1. Little or no employment skills or education

2. Little or no prior work experience

3. Substandard housing conditions or lack of affordable housing

4. Having a child with special needs

I am sure these are relevant areas — but NOT for all families that are being driven ONTO (not helped OFF) TANF!  None of these applied to my case, nor many women I network with.  They are women (at least one, homeless), some have done jail time over failure to pay allotted child support (after being stay at home mothers, then forced to fight for custody), others have had to drop out of school; whatever it was they were doing in life — had to STOP to accommodate the machinery of the courts, and with activists and attorneys — neither of them — telling which end was up, until common sense said, those were poor answers (to the circumstances) and some began looking other places for rational explanations of the behavior of those making critical decisions about our lives and our kids.

It makes zero sense to at least acknowledge the role of DV in work sabotage, sometimes long-term, and not continue to insist that to receive help, someone absolutely needs coaching.  I had work experience AND degrees, and as it happens, many educated and/or professional women leaving abusive relationships, where part of this abuse was economic control under duress, did not need more “job skills.”  What we needed was quite different, namely a SAFETY ZONE with which to rebuild.   However, thanks to dynamics, and Governors like Governor Keating in OK, or any other Governor who is enabling some administrative or executive agency to undermine legal rights of the states’ citizens (regardless of race, gender but with regard to marital status), women like us, mothers innocent of child abuse or any criminal wrongdoing — have been literally destroyed and taken out of the work force, while the concept that somehow faith-based organizations give a damn, and deserve special-status red carpet in order to grab those grants and ram marriage & relationship education down peoples throats — and from a VERY narrow range of potential marketeers, several of who already receive federal funding to run demonstration studies on citizens in the military, in prison, on welfare, paying child support (or not, as case may be), in schools — and even in Head Start — to fine-tune how to produce THEIR desired result in society!

Public Strategies Inc. of Oklahoma continues to get its share — $2.5 million, this last round — of GRANTS (not just contracts) to do more of the same and expand it — as the situations in which TANF funds may be applied to form two-parent families continues to expand.  The OMI knew — from the start (Testimony in 2002 shows) that the curriculum of choice, PREP(r) was going to be used.

Notice who paid for that first “Governor and First Lady’s Conference.”

The phrase “low conflict” is typically an AFCC one.  Wonder what there input was here.

More — this is not a half-bad summary:

The amount states must spend is set at 80 percent of their 1994 contribution to AFDC-related programs. (In some cases this “maintenance of effort” (MOE) requirement can be reduced to 75 percent.) In 2009 states spent roughly $15 billion in state MOE funds. The amount states are required to spend (at the 80 percent level) in 2009 is about 45 percent below the amount they spent on AFDC-related programs in 1994, after adjusting for inflation.

* * *The Deficit Reduction Act also provided $100 million per year to support programs designed to promote healthy marriages.

When TANF was created in 1996, Congress provided $2 billion in a contingency fund; this fund was not used much until the current recession but a number of states have received contingency funds for one or more years between 2008 and 2011. The fund is now depleted and states only received partial allocations for 2010 and 2011. In the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act {{ARRA}} (sometimes referred to as the “stimulus” bill), Congress created a new and temporary Emergency Funddesigned to provide aid to states that see increases in assistance caseloads or certain program costs as they address the needs of families during the economic downturn. Congress appropriated $5 billion to this new Emergency Fund for 2009 and 2010 — by the time the fund expired in September 2010, the $5 billion had been fully used.

Another Summary, from CRS (Congressional Research Service), prepared in 2007 — this is an outline

However, money taken from the public, collected in the U.S. Treasury, and reallocated out from there, usually has strings attached.  The strings attached to the restructuring of the child support system (Title IV-D) were significant; i.e., states needed to centralize their child support distribution system, and they were blessed with access visitation grants from a $10 million/year pool, proportionate to some stipulations based on their population, by Congress somehow, and this could be maintained IF the states were GOOD boys and complied.

The states have NOT been complying, but they are still getting the money, so I am presuming that there is some mutual benefit involved between state and local government stakeholders.  By the way, the word “Stakeholder” never usually applies to the people most drastically affected by policies set by stakeholders — which is those not at the table when policies are set, and likely in need of the services being restructured, recirculated, reframed, and redirected.

We are in the new millennium, which kicked off (after surviving the Y2K scare) pretty much with a possibly stolen election, and a King in the form of a President.  Kings, as their manner is, like to rewrite laws, restrict civil liberties, protect their cronies, equate their causes with “godly” causes, and protect THEIR, not the People’s Interest.  Such was definitely true the moment G. W. Bush took office in 2001, being sworn in to office under the same oath as previous Presidents.

The way was paved before him with 1996 Welfare Reform, which granted to states, allegedly, some of the co-dependent power it took from them, by allowing them “flexibility” (Block grants to states for TANF / welfare) to better address the needs of their citizens and reduce the welfare caseload.  If you are not “up” on this then research it some.  Center on Budget & Policy Priorities gives a brief recap.  These are good basic readings if you are, say, living and working in the United States.  Even if you are not doing this as a legal resident, or permanently, it may potentially affect situations such as were found in Seal Beach, California, when the father of a little boy, having 56% custody (despite prior violence, threats, and significant issues that would otherwise alert a reasonable person to danger) — being an ex-Marine — walked into a beauty salon with guns (and a bulletproof vest) and “offed” 6 people in the room (starting with a man, then his wife, then everyone else in there — a 73 yr old mother I heard survived serious wounds — and, who knows why, another innocent man sitting in a parked vehicle outside.  The joint custody policy comes from a combination of groups such as AFCC/CRC AND policies such as set in welfare reform.   These are not isolated incidences; they are recurring incidents (with more or less victims depending on circumstances) and their occurrences has not modified either welfare reform, or AFCC/CRC policy and agenda one whit, that I can see.  So, as a US resident, you will at some level be both funding these policies — and paying for clean up.   This is what we get for not paying closer attention to our legislatures, and doing WHATEVER is necessary to make time to do so, where at all possible!

From the “Center on Budget & Policy Priorities” whose board includes a person from the Brookings Institute, the Urban Institute (and Marian Wright Edelman of Children’s Defense Fund).  This nonprofit was founded in 1981, it says, and focuses on policies regarding low-income families, among other things.  I may not agree with all the viewpoints, but this outlines some of the facts:

They are going to detail some points about 1996 PRWORA, 2005 DRA, 2009 ARRA, and (let’s not forget the most recent, although I don’t know if this details), 2010 Claims Resolution Act

Sooner or later, (I hope), the public is going to wake up and ask just WHAT is its Congress authorizing when it comes to promoting marriage and fatherhood, and taking away from the original purpose of “AFDC” (Aid to Families with Dependent Children), or even the original purpose of TANF (aid to needy families), let alone the original purpose of the Child SUpport Enforcement (which was, child support enforcement).  Whatever the original purposes were — it’s clear which direction things are heading — which expansion of purposes, programs, and applications, and undermining of the ORIGINAL concept to a more circuitous, theory-based concept of how to help feed hungry children, and adult caretakers (including, like, parents?!)  in the households where they live, in America.

Policy Basics — an Introduction to TANF

What Is TANF?

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is a block grant created by the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, as part of a federal effort to “end welfare as we know it.” The TANF block grant replaced the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program, which had provided cash welfare to poor families with children since 1935.

Under the TANF structure, the federal government provides a block grant to the states, which use these funds to operate their own programs. States can use TANF dollars in ways designed to meet any of the four purposes set out in federal law, which are to: “(1) provide assistance to needy families so that children may be cared for in their own homes or in the homes of relatives; (2) end the dependence of needy parents on government benefits by promoting job preparation, work, and marriage; (3) prevent and reduce the incidence of out-of-wedlock pregnancies and establish annual numerical goals for preventing and reducing the incidence of these pregnancies; and (4) encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families.” . . .

The law that created the TANF block grant initially authorized funding through the end of federal fiscal year 2002. After several short-term extensions, Congress reauthorized TANF in the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 and made some modifications to the program;**TANF is now authorized through the end of federal fiscal year 2011 (September 30, 2011).

Who Is Eligible for TANF-Funded Benefits?

States have broad discretion to determine who is eligible for various TANF and MOE-funded benefits and services. In general, states must use the funds to serve families with children, with the only exceptions related to efforts to reduce non-marital childbearing and promote marriage . .

. . .

What Level of Funding Does TANF Provide to the States?

The basic TANF block grant has been set at $16.6 billion since it was established in 1996. As a result, the real value of the block grant has already fallen by about 28 percent.

The 1996 law also created supplemental grants for 17 states with high population growth or low block grant allocations relative to their needy population, as well as a contingency fund to help states weather a recession.** Congress regularly extended these supplemental grants, but the most recent extension covered only three of the four quarters of federal fiscal year 2011, and these grants expired July 1, 2011. This year represents the first time since 1996 that Congress has not fully funded the supplemental grants.

As noted above, states must spend state funds on programs for needy families as a condition of receiving the federal TANF block grant.

(Notice the #1 goal.  However, in Oklahoma, Ohio, other states, the emphasis was on goals 4, 3, 2 & 1, in approximate order, as shown by their policies.  I have blogged on the “OMI” before.

Apparently the DRA (2005) allowed states to categorize “MOE” expenses to NON-needy families (this is a footnote to a 2007 CRS [Congressional Research Service — you see their bill summaries also at Thomas.loc.gov) report by the same person, Mr. Gene Falk, Social Policy Specialist):

 FN 15 Prior to the enactment of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (DRA, P.L. 109-171) MOE funds used to achieve TANF’s family formation goals were restricted to expenditures on “needy” families with children. The DRA had a provision that allows a state’s total expenditure on activities to achieve these goals to be counted without regard to a family’s need. However, HHS regulations issued on February 5, 2008, limit MOE expenditures related to the family formation goals except for activities related to promoting healthy marriage and responsible fatherhood. (See Appendix, “Families Considered “Engaged in Work” (the Numerator of the Participation Rate)” later in this report for a listing of these activities. For a discussion of this regulatory provision, see Federal Register, vol. 73, no. 24, p. 6517-6318.

THIS, friends, is how one can encounter divorce or custody cases in which one side is a millionaire, but still benefitting from the priorities these programs set up in the courtroom, i.e. promoting more noncustodial (meaning father) parenting time by means of — supervised visitation, counseling, mediation, parent education, etc.  Court-referrals..

Using Federal TANF Grants

Federal TANF grants may be used for a wide range of benefits and services for families with children. Grants may be used within a state TANF program or transferred to either the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF, the “child care block grant”) or the Social Services Block Grant (SSBG). Unused TANF funds can also be reserved (saved), without fiscal year limit.12

FN12 Before the enactment of the ARRA, reserved funds could only be used for the purpose of providing “assistance” (often, cash welfare). The ARRA eliminated this restriction to the use of reserve funds, so that reserve funds can be used to provide any allowed TANF benefit or service.

**what Oklahoma did with its contingency fund, and other states (or certain appointees in other states) seem to like this model.  The ACF/HHS site mentions Oklahoma Marriage Initiative  as a model of how to use MOE funds, after first asserting that:

Healthy marriages are vitally important to the long term well-being of children. Beyond the economic advantages important for supporting children, the experiences and examples shown to children being raised by parents who enjoy a loving and long-term commitment yields tremendous developmental benefits for children. Forming and sustaining a happy and healthy marriage requires, in part, good fortune and, in larger part, parents possessing the knowledge and commitment to exercise healthy relationship skills that form the basis of healthy marriages.

(From the Director of HHS’s Office of Family Assistance, year, 2004.)

Certainly inherited wealth, circumstances of birth including where and to whom — have little to do with this; really, it’s about skills moreso.  Therefore, forget those other factors, let’s focus on the “healthy relationship skills” Well said, from an organization that distributes, but apparently doesn’t track too well, the funds!

Since the inception of PRWORA, Oklahoma has capitalized on the flexibility of TANF funds by investing $10 million in the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative (OMI). OMI was established under the third and fourth statutory purposes of TANF. OMI currently delivers marriage and relationship training statewide through social service systems, educational systems and volunteer organizations. Participants access training in diverse settings such as workforce development classes, high schools, military bases, prisons, first time offender programs, churches, universities and many more. In 2003, Oklahoma reported{{who checked??}}  that 938 workshops were conducted, serving 1,250 participants and training 1,200 individuals to provide future workshops. For additional information on Oklahoma’s Marriage Initiative please visit:http://www.okmarriage.org/services/healthyrelationships.asp

As I blogged before, the Governor of Oklahoma pushed this one from the top, with help from “expert speakers” and the head of his HHS, who pointed out there was TANF money sitting around.

The economic researchers found some social indicators that were hurting Oklahoma’s economy. They mentioned the high divorce rate, high rates of out-of-wedlock births and high rates of child deaths because of child abuse. One OSU economist wrote in an editorial, “Oklahoma’s high divorce rate and low per-capita income are interrelated. They hold hands. They push and pull each other. There’s no faster way [in Oklahoma!] for a married woman with children to become poor than to suddenly become a single mom.”

(Child abuse, of course doesn’t happen within marriages, and abuse of one’s kids is not a cause of divorce.) Then “Governor and First Lady’s (day-long) Conference on Marriage” with speaker..

(See, as recounted on a “smartmarriages.com” list-serv in 1999, how Gary Smalley & Wade Horn of the NFI were there…”Marriages must be strengthened for the sake of America’s children”

Theodora Ooms with the Family Impact Seminar in Washington
D.C. called the marriage conference historic. "You are pioneers here in
Oklahoma. I have been trying for ten years in Washington D.C. to get this
on the agenda and get some money to work on this issue and no one in
Washington will talk about it.
The Conference also included breakout sessions with attendees discussing
how the various sectors can work together and how government policy can
also impact the success of marriages. Among the items discussed: 

Public education- emphasize the positive aspects of marriage to young
people
Covenant marriages
Emphasis on premarital counseling, possibly even legally requiring it
Making laws more "family friendly"
Tax laws-possibly eliminating marriage penalty
Possible repeal of no fault divorce laws 

The Governor and First Lady¼s Conference on Marriage was facilitated by
Jerry Regier, the Governor¼s Cabinet Secretary for Health and Human
Services. It was privately funded by several groups and individuals,
including the Burbridge Foundation and the Baptist General Convention.

Good grief.   the Baptist General Convention got with the Governor and helped propose taking welfare funds to promote marriage,

since their own Sunday Sermons weren’t persuasive enough?  That’s “ripe.”

BURBRIDGE INFO (random, from Internet) — PART 1:

Burbridge Foundation, I’m going to look up, obviously.  From “TheLostOgle.com” (apparently some Oklahomans having some fund poking fun at their state, although I note, “*.com”)  This foundation was #93 on the top 100 most embarrassing things about Oklahoma (from 2007, its centenary?):

Top 100 Oklahoma Embarrassments: 100-91

Posted on Monday, July 16th, 2007 under Best of OKCDean BlevinsOKC Music,Oklahoma City AlumniOklahoma City MediaOklahoma City RadioThe Sports Animal,Top 100 Oklahoma Embarrassments by Tony

For the eight of you out there who didn’t realize it, 2007 marks the 100th anniversary of the state of Oklahoma. To mark this, various publications around the state have been featuring all sorts of Top 100 lists that have provoked virtually no controversy and have not been talked about at the water cooler. In fact, we’ve heard so little discussion about these lists that we wonder if anyone is actually reading them. We sure don’t.

It does seem, though, that the focus has been on the more positive elements of Oklahoma. While we celebrate those things just like the rest of the world, it seems wrong to ignore the more humiliating aspects of the state of Oklahoma. Naturally, we’re here to fill that void, in this ten-part series that will run every Monday. Today, numbers 91 through 100 of Oklahoma’s Biggest Embarrassments..

. . .

93. Bobbie Burbridge Lane

Those commercials for the Burbridge foundation are possibly the most annoying thing on local radio, which is saying something. When listening to Burbridge Lane lecture us about pornography or religion being taken out of public schools or whatever the pet issue of the day is, we’re convinced that Burbridge Lane wants to return the United States to the 1950′s, which probably sucked really bad. 

There’s usually some truth on the heels of humor, and this one rings true:

BURBRIDGE INFO (random, from Internet) — PART 2:  Could THIS be why The Burbridge Foundation is so big on Marriage (dates to 1974).

(read for comic relief): (from “law.justia.com”)

496 F.2d 326: The Burbridge Foundation, Inc., Appellant,

v. Reinholdt & Gardner et al., Appellees

Robert E. Hornberger, Fort Smith, Ark., for appellant.

G. Alan Wooten, Harper, Young & Smith, Fort Smith, Ark., for appellees.

Before VAN OOSTERHOUT, Senior Circuit Judge, and LAY and ROSS, Circuit judges.

PER CURIAM.

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit. – 496 F.2d 326

Submitted March 14, 1974.Decided May 15, 1974

. . .(The present suit is basically an action in rem seeking relinquishment of certain stocks held by the stakeholders, Reinholdt & Gardner. The Foundation’s memorandum in the trial court stated that ‘the relief specifically sought is the return and delivery to The Burbridge Foundation of its stock deposited with that defendant (Reinholdt & Gardner). …Upon registry of a personal judgment arising from a divorce decree, Velma Jean Holloway, formerly Velma Jean Burbridge, obtained a writ of garnishment from the Chancery Court of Sebastian County, Arkansas, against Reinholdt & Gardner, a stock brokerage firm, to attach any stocks belonging to her former husband, R. O. Burbridge. The brokerage firm denied holding any stock in Burbridge’s name, but admitted it had an account in the name of The Burbridge Foundation. The Burbridge Foundation intervened in the state court proceedings. Shortly thereafter, The Foundation brought suit in the federal district court against Reinholdt & Gardner, seeking recovery of the stocks. In its complaint, The Foundation made the same allegations it raised as intervenor in state court, i.e., that the stocks belonged to it and not R. O. Burbridge personally. In addition The Foundation for the first time asserted that the Arkansas garnishment statute was unconstitutional in that it sought to deprive The Foundation of its property without due process of law.1 Reinholdt & Gardner answered that it could not relinquish the stocks until ordered to do so by a court of competent jurisdiction. The Holloways2 intervened in the federal action and moved to dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The district court sustained the motion to dismiss. The Burbridge Foundation appeal[ed].

(and apparently lost).

(SMILE): [2]”Russell B. Holloway was the divorce attorney for Velma Jean Burbridge (now Holloway) and was awarded $12,000 in attorney’s fees. He was also a party to the state garnishment suit”
So, Velma Jean divorced Mr. Burbridge, eventually married her divorce attorney, and seems to have gotten some of his stock, too.  This being 1974; so in 2000, here is this Burbridge Foundation sponsoring a let’s support marriage (and potentially institute covenant marriage / eliminate no-fault divorce, etc.) in Oklahoma.  Moral:  There is usually a back story to most public policy, somewhere . ..   and more than not, based in someone’s personal issues, but wealth & power tends to think large (how do we think they got wealthy & powerful in the first place?), and the rest of the world should conform to their  theories…
(Is this the same Burbridge Foundation as in Oklahoma, or that sponsored that Governor’s Leadership Conference?  Possibly.  I’m not going to stress over this today.)

BURBRIDGE INFO (Random, from internet) PART 3:   Self-description on website:

The Burbridge Foundation is a Christian foundation dedicated to working solutions to problems impacting our families and our culture. We do this by bringing public awareness to these problems, by working alongside other faiths {{REALLY?  I’d like to see that — because the  “SALT & LIGHT LEADERSHIP TRAINING” below indicates non-Christians need not apply, and the carefully balanced photo on there  (with middle-aged Caucasian an at the front of the pyramid) doesn’t even contain a single African-American woman — does Oklahoma not have any?  There is an African-American male, at the back of the triangle, too….}} and concerned citizens interested in strengthening the fabric of our community character, and by providing leadership support to organizations of like vision.

We continue to work across the country with individuals and organizations combating the scourge of pornography – a deadly and often underestimated cancer assaulting the family. For information on the “WRAP Campaign” and other information on fighting porn go to www.moralityinmedia.org.

Our current effort focuses on Christian leadership development. In 2007, we reached out to several Oklahoma City Christian lay leaders with a vision for the creation of “salt and light leadership training” to leaders of this and other cities. This has now become the “SALLT Fellowship” which can be found at www.saltandlightleadership.com.

Soli Deo Gloria  (Latin: to God only be Glory; JS Bach used to sign his manuscripts with this, hear tell)

“We are not a direct grant-giving organization.”
Also at the same street address is “Character First”

Our Approach

Character First is a professional development and character education program that is delivered many ways—training seminars, books, magazines, curriculum, email—that focus on real-life issues at work, school, home, and the community.

Gee, then why might they NOT sponsor such a conference with the Governor on curriculum-based ways to strengthen marriages?

Communities & Character Councils

Character First works with government leaders and community organizations around the world who want to promote character on a local basis.

[[website says “Character First” began in 1992 at an Oil & Gas-servicing company called “Kimray”]]

To do this, many communities form a “Character Council” (often a non-profit, non-religious charitable organization) to promote character in all sectors of a community—including business, government, education, law enforcement, media, the faith community, and families.

The following communities have taken various steps toward promoting character, such as passing resolutions, forming character councils, implementing Character First, and organizing special events.

AND also at this address (3rd organization):
Strata Leadership, LLC is a small consulting firm located in Edmond, Oklahoma focused on helping individuals and organizations succeed.

Strata Leadership, LLC.

And here is where we see some Dispute Resolution background, familiar in the anti-divorce courtrooms around AFCC personnel as well:

hrough Strata’s partnerships with other organizations such as Character First!, our team consists of nearly 15 full-time employees.  Strata is led by our executive leadership team of Strata President, Dr. Nathan Mellor and Executive Vice-President, Wayne Whitesell.

[Photo of young-looking Caucasian guy]

Dr. Nathan Mellor is a co-owner and president of Strata.  He is a popular speaker who makes 125-175 presentations per year across America and around the globe.  He has spoken in over  states and in countries such as: Australia, Belize, Guyana, Jordan, Mexico, Russia and Rwanda.

Dr. Mellor holds the Bachelor of Arts (BA) and the Master of Science in Education (MSE) degrees fromHarding University. He earned the Master of Dispute Resolution (MDR) degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law – Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution and the Doctor of Education (EDD) in Organizational Leadership degree from Pepperdine University.

STrata’s Partners (at least 2 at the same address):

Strata is proud to partner with and promote the work of the following friends:

Copyright © 2009 Strata Leadership, L.L.C. All rights reserved.

Products — pricey!

The “other” sponsors of the Governor and First Lady’s year 2000 Conference are not mentioned, but I think we get the general idea…

Choice quote:

Even with a lack of comprehensive data about why the problem exists, the research information clearly demonstrates that something must be done. (: (:
OK -- just DO something -- and afterwards, maybe, look for actual cause & effect connections....  "Lack of Comprehensive Data"
* According to data provided by the CDC, Oklahoma has the 2nd highest
divorce rate in the nation, by state of residence.
   Only Arkansas has a worse divorce rate.
- Only 14% of white women who married in the early 1940's eventually
divorced, whereas almost half of white women who married in the late
1960's and early 1970's have already become divorced. For African-American
women, the figures are 18% and nearly 60%
Presumably some men, then, also divorced.  Any stats about them??  Go figures -- a NFI participatory event is going to
talk about the women! (behind their backs, too).

It’s Oklahoma!  Notice, the emphasis on divorce rate, by race.   …   Here, amazingly, is the 2002 Testimony of that Director of HHS for OK:

United State Senate Finance Committee Thursday, May 16, 2002 10:00 A.M.

Room 215 Dirksen Senate Office Building

Issues in TANF Reauthorization: Building Stronger Families

Testimony of Howard H. Hendrick Oklahoma Cabinet Secretary of Health and Human Services and Director, Oklahoma Deparment of Human Services

Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, thank you for the privilege of appearing today to share the genesis and status of Oklahoma’s strategy to strengthen marriages and reduce divorce. In Oklahoma, we are spending TANF funds for this purpose because the research clearly shows that child well-being is enhanced when children are reared in two parent families where the parents have a low conflict marriage. …

(Governor Keating):   He hosted the nation’’s first ““Governor and First Lady’’s Conference on Marriage”” in March, of 1999. Based on the information learned there, Oklahoma’’s Marriage Initiative was launched. The Governor took key steps to ensure that the goal of reducing divorce and strengthening marriage was more than simply a political statement. Specifically the governor:

␣ Took the bold step of setting a specific, measurable goal – to reduce divorce in Oklahoma by 1/3 by the year 2010.

Question:  What right does any Governor have to even TRY and do this?  (Notice, by this time both houses of US Congress had already voted National Resolutions to Support Fatherhood:  1998, 1999).  By 2002, they had already chosen a curriculum, “PREP(r).”  This curriculum, well — as 2002 testimony says:

We selected PREP® (the Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program) as the state’’s curriculum because of its research basis and its evaluation record. It is a curriculum that has been used in the military for many years. PREP can be tailored to a variety of constituencies and the long-term efficacy of the twelve hours of education has been validated in a variety of research settings.

We are presently in the training stage of implementing the service delivery system. These skills are beginning to be offered in workshops throughout Oklahoma. The training includes identifying substance abuse risks and presentations by the Oklahoma Coalition against Domestic Violence. . .

(Concluding statement):

Based on what we’’ve learned so far, we continue to support the use of TANF funds to fund activities that strengthen families by growing healthy marriages.

GROWING HEALTHY MARRIAGES?  Then, literally, they are farming their populace — which is objectionable!

The input of “Theodore Ooms” of “Family Impact Seminars” was noted.  Here is the “Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars (PINFIS).  “Surprisingly” it is funded by many of the responsible fatherhood grantees I have come to recognize over the years, such as the Annie E. Casey Foundation:

The Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars aims to strengthen family policy by connecting state policymakers with research knowledge and researchers with policy knowledge. The Institute provides nonpartisan, solution-oriented research and a family impact perspective on issues being debated in state legislatures. We provide technical assistance to and facilitate dialogue among professionals conducting Family Impact Seminars in 28 sites across the country. If you are a PINFIS Affiliate, please click here to login.

The Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars is currently funded by the W. K. Kellogg Foundation and the William T. Grant Foundation. Past supporters include the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Copyright © 1993-2011. Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy.

26 States + D.C. get seminars from this Wisconsin-based (presumably nonprofit) group based at UW-Madison/Extension.  “The Seminars target state policymakers, including legislators, legislative aides, governor’s office staff, legislative service agency staff, and agency representatives. The traditional format of the 2-hour seminars consists of three 20-minute presentations given by a panel of premier researchers, program directors, and policy analysts. For each seminar, discussion sessions are held and a background briefing report summarizes high-quality research on the issue in a succinct, easy-to-understand format.”

UMichigan reveals they’ve had 16 Family Impact Seminars since 2000— and that the Kellogg Foundation is helping them receive this also.  This 2000 report, on one page sites a survey of “9 barriers to employment that single mothers face” and doesn’t mention — domestic violence at all.  However, on page 17, in a page dedicated to Domestic Violence, the two authors note:

Background Data and Research

Families who experience domestic violence are often also victims of poverty. Studies examining the association between domestic violence and poverty have found:

 Of current welfare recipients in Michigan, 63% have experienced physical abuse and 51% have experienced severe physical abuse during their lifetimes[12].

• Physical abuse/being afraid of someone was cited as the primary cause of homelessness (in a survey of homeless adults in Michigan) [7].

• Half of homeless women and children report being victims of domestic violence [5,7].

AND,. . . . well, here is the rest of the page:

These barriers consist of:

• Psychological effects of domestic violence (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, depression, or anxiety)

• Sabotage by the abuser (destroying homework assignments, disabling cars and alarm clocks, interference with child care efforts, or harassment at work)

• Manipulation by the abuser (leaving marks and/or bruises that prevent the woman from attending work or an interview, or undermining self-confidence

These employment barriers can lead to tardiness, absenteeism and lack of productivity. Research shows that between 23% and 42% affected by domestic violence report that the abuse had an impact on their work performance [4,5,12].

A study conducted by the University of Michigan suggests that domestic violence by itself is not a barrier to employment,** but that the more barriers one has, the more difficult it is to leave welfare for work [2]. Further research is needed on multiple barriers to employment resulting from domestic violence.

**personal.  True, it’s possible to work — at times, and as allowed by an abuser — with domestic violence.  I have done many things competently immediately after and immediately preceding devastating attacks, some physical, some threats, some involving threats to our children, and once even after they were removed illegally, overnight, and despite law enforcement having been alerted to the threat shortly (same season) before.  Yes it is possible, depending on the person and the relationship, to hold down a job or series of jobs and simply take the abuse at home going or coming.  But, over long-term, the violence does escalate, and a person has to take action on it.  And it DOES cut down on productivity.   It is also possible to work, and in a relationship, not be able to spend the proceeds from one’s own work on one’s kids’ welfare.  Also because work tends to empower women, with men threatened with that independence, it is sometimes a time of increased harm, as he’s torn between wanting the money from that work, but realizing that “his” woman is going to have some work relationships he may not be able to utterly control.

A recent study found that approximately 70% of domestic violence victims did not disclose the abuse to their TANF caseworkers [10]. The same study found that 75% of those that did reveal information about the violence did not receive the appropriate support or services. These results imply that without the proper services, many victims of domestic violence and their children are forced to return home to their abuser.

(from page “Domestic Violence and Poverty Deborah Satyanathan and Anna Pollack”)

In a climate (see Oklahoma Marriage Initiative) where the powers that be believe — or say they do — that it’s lack of marriage (and not really, violence in marriages or other forms of abuse impacting work & home life) causing poverty, the only alternative individuals have, who are caught up in that — is to request the state to honor its laws against such abuse.  If the state, based on ITS own decisions made with help from The National Fatherhood Initiative and others, based on their theories — chooses to overstep Executive Authority, as Governor Keating of OK specifically intended to, and did, do — then he just weakened the very state (as a member of states under the US Constitution — at least at some time in the past century or two, we were) in the name of “strengthening families.”

This Study quotes the “Center for Budget & Policy Priorities” I cite also for a TANF summary (above).  They cite 4 barriers to work, NONE of which applied to many of the women I knew in DV support groups in the 1990s and have known since (to this day) in custody battles for their children, in the 2000s, where judicial discretion wins the day, and judges sit on the boards of nonprofits taking business from access visitation and other TANF-funded activities!   This study from a group named in influencing the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative, relates:

Four of the major barriers identified by analysts at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities include [2]:

1. Little or no employment skills or education

2. Little or no prior work experience

3. Substandard housing conditions or lack of affordable housing

4. Having a child with special needs

I am sure these are relevant areas — but NOT for all families that are being driven ONTO (not helped OFF) TANF!  None of these applied to my case, nor many women I network with.  They are women (at least one, homeless), some have done jail time over failure to pay allotted child support (after being stay at home mothers, then forced to fight for custody), others have had to drop out of school; whatever it was they were doing in life — had to STOP to accommodate the machinery of the courts, and with activists and attorneys — neither of them — telling which end was up, until common sense said, those were poor answers (to the circumstances) and some began looking other places for rational explanations of the behavior of those making critical decisions about our lives and our kids.

It makes zero sense to at least acknowledge the role of DV in work sabotage, sometimes long-term, and not continue to insist that to receive help, someone absolutely needs coaching.  I had work experience AND degrees, and as it happens, many educated and/or professional women leaving abusive relationships, where part of this abuse was economic control under duress, did not need more “job skills.”  What we needed was quite different, namely a SAFETY ZONE with which to rebuild.   However, thanks to dynamics, and Governors like Governor Keating in OK, or any other Governor who is enabling some administrative or executive agency to undermine legal rights of the states’ citizens (regardless of race, gender but with regard to marital status), women like us, mothers innocent of child abuse or any criminal wrongdoing — have been literally destroyed and taken out of the work force, while the concept that somehow faith-based organizations give a damn, and deserve special-status red carpet in order to grab those grants and ram marriage & relationship education down peoples throats — and from a VERY narrow range of potential marketeers, several of who already receive federal funding to run demonstration studies on citizens in the military, in prison, on welfare, paying child support (or not, as case may be), in schools — and even in Head Start — to fine-tune how to produce THEIR desired result in society!

Public Strategies Inc. of Oklahoma continues to get its share — $2.5 million, this last round — of GRANTS (not just contracts) to do more of the same and expand it — as the situations in which TANF funds may be applied to form two-parent families continues to expand.  The OMI knew — from the start (Testimony in 2002 shows) that the curriculum of choice, PREP(r) was going to be used.

Notice who paid for that first “Governor and First Lady’s Conference.”

The phrase “low conflict” is typically an AFCC one.  Wonder what there input was here.

More — this is not a half-bad summary:

The amount states must spend is set at 80 percent of their 1994 contribution to AFDC-related programs. (In some cases this “maintenance of effort” (MOE) requirement can be reduced to 75 percent.) In 2009 states spent roughly $15 billion in state MOE funds. The amount states are required to spend (at the 80 percent level) in 2009 is about 45 percent below the amount they spent on AFDC-related programs in 1994, after adjusting for inflation.

* * *The Deficit Reduction Act also provided $100 million per year to support programs designed to promote healthy marriages.

When TANF was created in 1996, Congress provided $2 billion in a contingency fund; this fund was not used much until the current recession but a number of states have received contingency funds for one or more years between 2008 and 2011. The fund is now depleted and states only received partial allocations for 2010 and 2011. In the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act {{ARRA}} (sometimes referred to as the “stimulus” bill), Congress created a new and temporary Emergency Funddesigned to provide aid to states that see increases in assistance caseloads or certain program costs as they address the needs of families during the economic downturn. Congress appropriated $5 billion to this new Emergency Fund for 2009 and 2010 — by the time the fund expired in September 2010, the $5 billion had been fully used.

Another Summary, from CRS (Congressional Research Service), prepared in 2007 — this is an outline

However, money taken from the public, collected in the U.S. Treasury, and reallocated out from there, usually has strings attached.  The strings attached to the restructuring of the child support system (Title IV-D) were significant; i.e., states needed to centralize their child support distribution system, and they were blessed with access visitation grants from a $10 million/year pool, proportionate to some stipulations based on their population, by Congress somehow, and this could be maintained IF the states were GOOD boys and complied.

The states have NOT been complying, but they are still getting the money, so I am presuming that there is some mutual benefit involved between state and local government stakeholders.  By the way, the word “Stakeholder” never usually applies to the people most drastically affected by policies set by stakeholders — which is those not at the table when policies are set, and likely in need of the services being restructured, recirculated, reframed, and redirected.

Here’s a 2010 (June 24, 2010, to be specific) Heritage Foundation article complaining about increasing entitlements Obama’s escalation of welfare roles (true) and how the “success” of TANF should be applied to other federal programs.

Confronting the Unsustainable Growth of Welfare Entitlements:

Principles of Reform and the Next Steps

June 24, 2010

  • Do you know who the Heritage Foundation is?
  • Do you know who funds them? or where to find out?
  • Do you know who they fund, or where to find out?
  • Could you participate pro or con in this argument, supporting it with any facts?
  • Do you agree or not?
  • Can you put those arguments in a different context than they do?

They proclaimed:

Abstract: The growth of welfare spending is unsustainable and will drive the United States into bankruptcy if allowed to continue. President Barack Obama’s fiscal year 2011 budget request would increase total welfare spending to $953 billion—a 42 percent increase over welfare spending in FY 2008, the last full year of the Bush Administration. To bring welfare spending under control, Congress should reduce welfare spending to pre-recession levels after the recession ends and then limit future growth to the rate of inflation. Congress should also restore work requirements in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program and apply them to other federal welfare programs.

They also said of TANF that it was a success.  Yet — in reality — it is the means by which expansion of the welfare state — particularly after faith-based organizations were invited in — was assured.   The track record is that MANY of these are not just incompetent — but chronically dishonest, and when caught (as I tend to stay) in one state, simply hop over to another.  I can name names and organizations and dates, sometimes States, of the “hops.”   They obtain web resources through HHS “compassion capital” or other grants, and this last season, our government just gave over $1 million GRANT to ICF International, LLC (or whatever it’s proper current name is) a group currently doing $1 BILLION business with the Feds, and with an agenda to transform communities through (basically, media domination).

Listen to this:

Reform should be based on five principles:

  1. Slowing the growth of the welfare state. Unending government deficits are pushing the United States toward bankruptcy. The U.S. simply cannot afford the massive increases in welfare spending planned by President Barack Obama. Welfare spending is projected to cost taxpayers $10.3 trillion over the next 10 years.[1] Congress needs to establish reasonable fiscal constraints within the welfare system. Once the current recession ends, aggregate welfare spending should be rolled back to pre-recession levels. After this rollback has been completed, the growth of welfare spending should be capped at the rate of inflation.
  2. Promoting personal responsibility and work. Able-bodied welfare recipients should be required to work or to prepare for work as a condition of receiving aid. Food stamps and housing assistance, two of the largest programs for the needy, should be aligned with the TANF program to require able-bodied adults to work or to prepare for work for a minimum of 30 hours per week.  (see ## my footnote)
  3. Providing a portion of welfare assistance as loans rather than as grants. Welfare to able-bodied adults creates a potential moral hazard because providing assistance to those in need can lead to an increase in the behaviors that generate the need for aid in the first place. If welfare assistance rewards behaviors that lead to future dependence, costs can spiral out of control. A reformed welfare policy can provide temporary assistance to those in need while reducing the moral hazard associated with welfare by treating a portion of welfare aid as a loan to be repaid by able-bodied recipients rather than as an outright grant from the taxpayer.
  4. Ending the welfare marriage penalty and encouraging marriage in low-income communities. The collapse of marriage is the major cause of child poverty in the U.S. today. When the War on Poverty began, 7 percent of children in the U.S. were born out of wedlock; today, the figure is over 40 percent.[2] Most alarmingly, the out-of-wedlock birthrate among African–Americans is 72 percent. The outcomes for children raised in single, never-married homes are greatly diminished.Current means-tested welfare programs penalize low-income recipients who get married; these anti-marriage penalties should be reduced or eliminated. In addition, government should provide information on the importance of marriage to individuals in poor communities who have a high risk of having children out of wedlock. Particular emphasis should be placed on the benefits to children of a married two-parent family.***
  5. Limit low-skill immigration. Around 15 percent ($100 billion per year) of total means-tested welfare spending goes to households headed by immigrants with high school degrees or less.[3] One-third of all immigrants lack a high school degree.[4] Over the next 10 years, America will spend $1.5 trillion on welfare benefits for lower-skill immigrants. Government policy should limit future immigration to those who will be net fiscal contributors, paying more in taxes than they receive in benefits. The legal immigration system should not encourage immigration of low-skill immigrants who would increase poverty in the nation and impose vast new costs on already overburdened taxpayers.

**Never mind that this has been done now — for years — and at statewide level.  Can we reasonably assume that no one at the Heritage Foundation knows this?

##FN2 — how about requiring recipients of diversionary programs from child support and TANF to document that THEY worked at least 30 hours a week?  And have incorporated, and that their incorporations have actually been proper, are current, and if required to, filed a 990?  I’ve seen dropped loose ends of $50K a pop (SolidSource in Van Wert, OH comes to mind) or others have found dropped loose ends of $227,000.  MOreover, we have child support privatized to outside organizations, such as MAXIMUS — themselves caught in fraud and overbilling — and THEY continue to receive government benefits from the US in the form of renewed contracts, even after paying, for example $30 million in settlement fees over these matters.

So I say, let’s put the focus on the MACRO-ECONOMIC trends — namely allowing corporations and HHS / DOJ /DOE to get in bed with them to determine whether future employees of these corporations eat, have safe drinking water, and have access to decent educations (not just skills training for globally noncompetitive jobs in the same corporations!)

POINT 4, above:

. . .encouraging marriage in low-income families.   The Collapse of Marriage is the Major Factor in Child Poverty Today.

No it’s not.  That’s a single-source, single-interpretation of the causes of poverty.

Now, I could debate that at least logically, following the words “Sez who?” and “Who Sez those are the only experts?” and then poke some holes in the rhetoric.

Could You? Should You?  Or don’t you care about the use of taxes and public policy any more?

Go to the actual laws:

THE LAWS IN QUESTION:

PRWORA link:

The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA,Pub.L. 104-193, 110 Stat. 2105, enacted August 22, 1996) is a United States federal law considered to be a fundamental shift in both the method and goal of federal cash assistance to the poor. The bill added a workforce development component to welfare legislation, encouraging employment among the poor. The bill was a cornerstone of the Republican Contract With Americaand was introduced by Rep. E. Clay Shaw, Jr. (R-FL-22) who believed welfare was partly responsible for bringing immigrants to the United States.[1] Bill Clinton signed PRWORA into law on August 22, 1996, fulfilling his 1992 campaign promise to “end welfare as we have come to know it”.[2]

(Wikipedia note — TANF Reauthorization was contained in this);  
 The reauthorization of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program was also contained in the bill, as was the provision for the Digital Transition and Public Safety Act of 2005. Part of the TANF reauthorization reduces the threshold for passport denial for child support arrearages under 42 USC 652(k)to $2,500.
 
 

Senate bill S. 1932 passed the Senate, with a tie-breaking vote cast by Vice PresidentDick Cheney, and House bill H.R. 4241 passed the House 217-215. The Senate bill was signed by PresidentGeorge W. Bush on February 8, 2006.[2]

[Dispute over legal status

A dispute arose over whether both houses of Congress had approved the same bill. Those contending that the bill is not a law argue there were different versions of the same bill, neither of which was approved by both the House and the Senate. They argue that the document signed by the President would not have the force of law, on the ground that the enacting process bypassed the Bicameral Clause of the U.S. Constitution.  (For what wikipedia is worth, find this interesting….)

 

P.L. 109–171, Approved February 8, 2006 (120 Stat. 4)

Deficit Reduction Act of 2005

*    *    *    *    *    *    *

SECTION 1. [42 U.S.C. 1305 note]  SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the “Deficit Reduction Act of 2005”.

Has sections on TANF & Child Support.

SEC. 7101. TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY FAMILIES AND RELATED PROGRAMS FUNDING THROUGH SEPTEMBER 30, 2010.

(a) [None Assigned]  In General.—Activities authorized by part A of title IV and section 1108(b) of the Social Security Act (adjusted, as applicable, by or under this subtitle, the amendments made by this subtitle, and the TANF Emergency Response and Recovery Act of 2005[275]) shall continue through September 30, 2010, in the manner authorized for fiscal year 2004, and out of any money in the Treasury of the United States not otherwise appropriated, there are hereby appropriated such sums as may be necessary for such purpose. Grants and payments may be made pursuant to this authority on a quarterly basis through fiscal year 2010 at the level provided for such activities for the corresponding quarter of fiscal year 2004 (or, as applicable, at such greater level as may result from the application of this subtitle, the amendments made by this subtitle, and the TANF Emergency Response and Recovery Act of 2005), except that in the case of section 403(a)(3) of the Social Security Act, grants and payments may be made pursuant to this authority only through fiscal year 2010[276] and in the case of section 403(a)(4) of the Social Security Act, no grants shall be made for any fiscal year occurring after fiscal year 2005.

*    *    *    *    *    *    *

SEC. 7301. ASSIGNMENT AND DISTRIBUTION OF CHILD SUPPORT.

 (etc.)

The Deficit Reduction Act also reauthorizes welfare reform for another 5 years. Welfare reform has proved a tremendous success over the past decade. By insisting on programs that require work and self-sufficiency in return for Federal aid, we’ve helped cut welfare cases by more than half since 1996. Now we’re building on that progress by renewing welfare reform with a billion-dollar increase in child care funding and new grants to support healthy marriage and responsible fatherhood programs.

One of the reasons for the success of welfare reform is a policy called charitable choice which allows faith-based groups that provide social services to receive Federal funding without changing the way they hire. Ten years ago, Congress made welfare the first Federal program to include charitable choice. The bill I sign today will extend charitable choice for another 5 years and expand it to the new healthy marriage and responsible fatherhood programs. Appreciate the hard work of all who supported the extension

of charitable choice—including the good- hearted men and women of the faith-based community who are here today. By reauthor- izing welfare reform with charitable choice, we will help millions more Americans move from welfare to work and find independence and dignity and hope.

The message of the bill I sign today is straightforward: By setting priorities and making sure tax dollars are spent wisely, America can be compassionate and respon- sible at the same time. Spending restraint de- mands difficult choices, yet making those choices is what the American people sent us to Washington to do. One of our most impor- tant responsibilities is to keep this economy strong and vibrant and secure for our chil- dren and our grandchildren. We can be proud that we’re helping to meet that respon- sibility today.

Now I ask the Members of the Congress to join me as I sign the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005.

NOTE: The President spoke at 3:31 p.m. in the East Room at the White House. S. 1932, approved February 8, was assigned Public Law No. 109– 171.

{{He also began by distinguishing between DISCRETIONARY and MANDATORY spending:

At the same time, my budget tightens the belt on Government spending. Every American family has to set priorities and live within a budget, and the American people expect us to do the same right here in Washington, DC.

The Federal budget has two types of spending, discretionary spending and manda- tory spending. Discretionary spending is the kind of spending Congress votes on every year. Last year, Congress met my request and passed bills that cut discretionary spending not related to defense or homeland security. And this year, my budget again proposes to cut this spending. My budget also proposes again to keep the growth in overall discre- tionary spending below the rate of inflation

AND ARRA:
Wikipedia:

 (Pub.L. 111-5) and commonly referred to as the Stimulus or The Recovery Act, is an economic stimulus package enacted by the 111th United States Congress in February 2009 and signed into law on February 17, 2009, by President Barack Obama.

To respond to the late-2000s recession, the primary objective for ARRA was to save and create jobs almost immediately. Secondary objectives were to provide temporary relief programs for those most impacted by the recession and invest in infrastructure, education, health, and ‘green’ energy. The approximate cost of the economic stimulus package was estimated to be $787 billion at the time of passage. The Act included direct spending in infrastructure, education, health, and energy, federal tax incentives, and expansion ofunemployment benefits and other social welfare provisions. The Act also included many items not directly related to economic recovery such as long-term spending projects (e.g., a study of the effectiveness of medical treatments) and other items specifically included by Congress (e.g., a limitation on executive compensation in federally aided banks added by Senator Dodd and Rep. Frank).

The rationale for ARRA was from Keynesian macroeconomic theory which argues that, during recessions, the government should offset the decrease in private spending with an increase in public spending in order to save jobs and stop further economic deterioration.

TEXT of the LAW:

(thomas.gov)

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 – (Sec. 5) Designates each amount in this Act as: (1) an emergency requirement, necessary to meet certain emergency needs in accordance with the FY2008-FY2009 congressional budget resolutions; and (2) an emergency for Pay-As-You-Go (PAYGO) principles.

TITLE II (Commerce, Justice, ….)

Makes supplemental appropriations for FY2009 to the Department of Justice (DOJ) for: (1) the Office of Inspector General; (2) state and local law enforcement activities; (2) the Office on Violence Against Women; (3) the Office of Justice Programs; (4) state and local law enforcement assistance; and (5) community oriented policing services (COPS).

. . .

Subtitle B: Assistance for Vulnerable Individuals – (Sec. 2101) Amends part A of title IV (Temporary Assistance to Needy Families) (TANF) of the Social Security Act (SSA) to establish in the Treasury an Emergency Contingency Fund for State Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Programs (Emergency Fund). Makes appropriations to such Fund.

Directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to make a grant from the Emergency Fund to each requesting state for any quarter of FY2009-FY2010 if the state’s average monthly assistance caseload for the quarter exceeds its average monthly assistance caseload for the corresponding quarter in the state’s emergency fund base year. Requires the amount of any such grant to be 80% of the excess of total state expenditures for basic assistance over total state expenditures for such assistance for the corresponding quarter in the state’s emergency fund base year.

. . . .

(Sec. 2102) Extends TANF supplemental grants through FY2010.

(Sec. 2103) Makes technical amendments to the authority of a state or Indian tribe to use a block grant for TANF for any fiscal year to provide, without fiscal year limitation, (carry over) any benefit or service that may be provided under the program funded under the block grant, including future contingencies.

(Sec. 2104) Amends SSA title IV part D (Child Support and Establishment of Paternity) to suspend for FY2008-FY2010 the prohibition against payments to states with respect to their plans for child and spousal support collection on account of amounts expended by a state from support collection performance incentive payments received from the Secretary of HHS (thus allowing such additional payments during such period).

(just pointing out, from the CRS summary, that certain parts affect TANF & Child Support, I.e., TITLE IV-A, IV-D of Social Security Act. 
 
CLAIMS RESOLUTION ACT OF 2010 (passed one year ago — 11/19/2010!)(you may need to re/search from Thomas.loc.gov)  111th Congress, H.R. 4783
Title VIII: General Provisions (AND YOU”LL SEE WHY FATHERHOOD ORGANIZATIONS, PLUS MARRIAGE EDUCATORS, WERE REJOICING OVER THIS ONE):

Sec. 802) Amends part D (Child Support and Establishment of Paternity) of title IV of the Social Security Act to require an employer to report to the state Directory of New Hires, in addition to other information, the date services for remuneration were first performed by a newly hired employee.

Subtitle B: TANF – (Sec. 811) Amends part A (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families [TANF]) of title IV of the Social Security Act to continue grants to states for temporary assistance for needy families programs through September 30, 2011.

(WONDER WHERE WE’RE AT ON THIS NOW …..)

Requires preference for healthy marriage promotion and responsible fatherhood grants to be given to entities that have previously: (1) been awarded funds; and (2) demonstrated the ability to carry out specified programs successfully.

WHAT ARE THE CHANCES, DO YOU THINK, THAT (2) WILL BE MONITORED?

Directs an entity seeking funding for both healthy marriage and responsible fatherhood promotion to submit a combined application assuring that it will carry out such activities: (1) under separate programs; and (2) without combining funds awarded to carry out either such activities.

Revises the definition of “healthy marriage promotion activities” to include marriage education and other specified programs for individuals in addition to nonmarried pregnant women and nonmarried expectant fathers.

THE DISTINCTION BETWEEN MARRIAGE AND FATHERHOOD ACTIVITIES DOES NOT REALLY EXIST.  FOR EXAMPLE, HEALTHY MARRIAGE GRANTEE (I THINK IT WAS ORIGINALLY “SACRAMENTO HEALTHY MARRIAGE COALITION” (Carolyn Curtis, Ph.D.) was characterized in a recent AZFFC.org publication as the “Sacramento affiliate” of this fathers and families coalition — although the title then said “Healthy Marriage” and recently reads something like (last I heard) “Relationship Education Institute” or such.

Appropriates (out of money not otherwise appropriated) for FY2011: (1) $75 million for healthy marriage promotion activities; and (2) $75 million for promotion of responsible fatherhood activities. (Current law authorized $150 million, combined, for both programs in specified fiscal years.) Limits appropriated funds awarded to states, territories, Indian tribes and tribal organizations, and public and nonprofit community entities, including religious organizations, for activities promoting responsible fatherhood to $75 million (current law has a $50 million limit). Requires amounts awarded to fund demonstration projects testing the effectiveness of tribal governments in coordinating the provision to tribal families at risk of child abuse or neglect of child welfare services, and other tribal programs, to be taken in equal proportion from such separate appropriations for healthy marriage and responsible fatherhood activities.

Appropriates (out of money not otherwise appropriated) to the Contingency Fund for State Welfare Programs such sums as necessary for payment to the Fund in a total not to exceed: (1) for FY2011, such sums as are necessary for amounts obligated on or after October 1, 2010, and before enactment of the this Act; and (2) for FY2012, $612 million. (Current law reduces such appropriations by specified amounts.)

Well, I may regret hitting “PUBLISH” on this one, but here goes. . . . .
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