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

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“Comment Submitted To:” (Supervised Visitation, Interlocking Nonprofits, in Minnesota)

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I submitted today to:
Carver County (MN) Corruption // AFCC chart page

COMMENTARY ON THE COMMENT:

Conceptual Thinking (understanding systems) is Essential to Freedom.
Networking for mutual self-support groups is wonderful, but failure by support groups to scout why one needed them to start with, is suicidal, in the long run. Support groups simply go form their silos of information and shun information which doesn’t fit with the status quo.

This is a great way to overspecialize and become an extinct species. We HAVE to be able to speak a language that incorporates understanding of the systems that structure our lives. We aren’t. There are crackups, domestic violence, gang violence, and various kinds of “roadkill,” to which people have conveniently (for those who DO understand systems, and own them) self-separated into their groups by label: Protective Mothers, Battered Mothers, Fathers’ Rights, Family Values vs. Pro Choice, etc.

Have you ever seen skilled sheepdogs in action? Consider what they do — they face off with the sheep; one dog can control a sizeable clump. Now — who does the sheepdog answer to and who feeds and trains him?

Now, who pays the man (or woman, I suppose) who trains, feeds, and runs the sheepdogs?

The real question is, who owns the ranch. And that’s what family court reform groups (male or female) simply forget to specialize in, and train each other to respond to signals from, that is, to respond as the owner of the ranch might — not as the sheep might.

I don’t know if you can get a visual on this — but picture sheepdog trials, and a batch is let out at time, and the canine “middle mangement” of this operation called a ranch, who do a lot of the running around, but appear to be innately designed for this — they LOVE running the sheep — are running one clumped together focused on the sheepdog (not the farm owners) and facing it, either face-off and freeze, or running. Eventually they ARE going to be run into the pen, where after a long (Or short) and domesticated life, during which they will be sheared and produce more lambs — eventually they will be possibly eaten. Such a life!

Divide, shepherd, shear, and eventually eat. Control reproduction. Sort for desired qualities.
That’s for sheep, but it’s been applied on people. And the sheepdogs bark and posture. The sheep don’t even have a language to talk back with that means anything other than what sounds they are making on the way back into the fold (pen).

As human beings, if we want freedom, we need to speak more than one language, and understand which language one is hearing at a given point of time. We also had better get a lid on understanding systems, AND becoming a better judge of character.

I read tax returns and look up corporations not because it’s profitable, or inherently more interesting than other things I could do with an immediate (though very transient, in my situation) profit. I read tax returns and look up corporations (and ask others to) because it tells me about who is doing what in the commercial landscape. I think the basics are clear, and a lot of the continued lookups I may (and am) still doing, are part for personal insight — but moreso for demonstrating to others.

This kind of data (even as poorly sourced as the free databases are, and as unwieldy as they are to produce any kind of report from) — givesi us a headsup on which way the economy has been going, is going and on WHY certain groups and talk like they do. It is one way of standing a little aprt from the clump of sheep to consider the patterns of frantic running around.

As a domestic violence survivor, I have also believed that the middle of pack of sheep frozen in certain language patterns and dashing around the internet to bond with their own kind, producing more of the same kind of (outdated though still valid in parts) information is producing inbreeding –and doesn’t increase the defensive or safety position one iota.

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Why Supervised Visitation (per se) Sucks. Federal Millions, that is (DOJ Grant 2004-WX-AT-K046) [Publ. June 6, 2013, Format Adjusted May 31, 2021].

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POST TITLE:

Why Supervised Visitation (per se) Sucks. Federal Millions, that is (DOJ Grant 2004-WX-AT-K046) [Publ. June 6, 2013, Format Adjusted May 31, 2021]. (short-link ends “-1Ln.” Post published June 6, 2013, about 8,300 wds)

[[This post is temporarily, “sticky” as this field — Supervised Visitation — is a BFD]].  DOJ Grant 2004-WX-AT-K046: (and a few others).

There are people who make a living in evaluating federally-funded grants programs, such as Safe Exchange and Supervised Visitation.

I have made a survey of the field. A quick check of one of the major international nonprofit associations of providers, Supervised Visitation Network, Inc.. Based on my sampling, plus field experiences, and supported by two DOJ/OIG audits of a certain grant promoting supervised visitation to both providers (regarding the fathers) and to Mothers, to indoctrinate them into accepting the situation, I have come to the essential evaluation (which no DOJ grant was used in producing):

Supervised Visitation, per se, Sucks

My Field Exhibits includes two DOJ audits of Grant 2004-WX-AT-K046 (and related), and how grantees responded to being caught defrauding customers, i.e., US taxpayers: They regrouped and did it again elsewhere.

You can sometimes spot these on the fly: Looks like another one:

Legal Resource Center for Violence Against Women (“LRCVAW” here, also that’s its url):

Working with Attorneys . .To provide Justice and Safety . . . for Domestic Violence Survivors . . in Interstate Custody Cases. “This project was supported by grant number 2004-WT-AX-K079 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, United States Department of Justice. Points of view expressed in this document are those of the author, and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Office on Violence Against Women, United States Department of Justice..

This is another T&TA site: sign up for trainings (aka webinars) and “resources” include the list of State Coalitions, some ABA commissions, and one of the groups I’m profiling below which got nailed for mis-use of federal grants (the same kind!) by the US DOJ/OIG, which is to say, the auditor’s office. LRCVAW apparently incorporated in Maryland on 6/27/2003,** changed the address once, and says it is a nonprofit. (I just looked grantee up under USASpending.gov and found a grant helping supervised visitation centers with interstate custody cases. Over $2 million in grants so far. 6 awards;, not bad for a small organization.

(**Broken link (search again @ (look up “Maryland Business Entities Search”) but the LRCVAW.org link above still active and still not posting its EIN# or any financials. Or see http://apps.irs.gov/app/eos/ to search by name for  EIN# //LGH 31May2021).

USDOJ Audit Reports are grouped into “By Component” and “External.” Notice the the OVW is “External” See next link to view the OVW audits, of which I randomly (really! in general, I was interested in Pennsylvania’s DV groups) chose to audit a certain one, and found material for this post….

Office on Violence Against Women External ReportsThe Audit Division reports on the expenditure of federal funds by certain recipients of grants from the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW).

2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 1998
2012
October 12, 2012
~ Audit of the Office on Violence Against Women Safe Havens Grant Awarded to the Michigan Department of Human Services, Lansing, Michigan, Audit Report GR-50-13-002

September 27, 2012
~ Audit of the Office on Violence Against Women and Office of Justice Programs Grants Awarded to the Idaho Supreme Court, Boise, Idaho, Audit Report GR-60-12-021

~>~>~>~>September 5, 2012
~ Audit of the Office on Violence Against Women Technical Assistance Cooperative Agreements Administered by the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape, Enola, Pennsylvania, Audit Report GR-70-12-009

Page “3” footnote of this one, referencing $4 million (4 Technical Assistance Grantss) to PCAR fround $336K of questionable costs.

The other (April 2010) audit was not to PCAR, but to the nonprofit NDAA, covering $16 million (16 grants) of which $4million of questionable costs came up. Some of these questionable costs covered the grant mentioned in this title, to “APRI” (American Prosecutors Research Institute), which I happen to know some battered women love to quote as it talks about PAS. However, they don’t look at the financial angle enough to understand they just quoted an organization engaged in questionable financial practices!). That Grant 30-10-0001 is linked to & mentioned again below.


My evaluation approach differs radically from approaches by, say, Dr. Daniel G. Saunders, Professor of Social Work a UMichigan, that Barry Goldstein keeps quoting and holding out as “new light” on how to protect children. While he and his colleagues publish – and do not perish– about these matters, we mothers (and fathers) (and taxpayers) ARE perishing surrounding the topic. I think I might blog that separately, but just FYI, he is on the same TYPE of grants streams as these other technical training and service providers.

You wouldn’t believe how networked these groups are! Take a look, it’s evident.

The thing is, most of us do NOT take a look, and go unconsciously about our business without considering the money forked over for redistribution as actually ours: once it’s out of sight, out of mind. This gets, in the long run, to be like any other project left ignored for years — it tends to expand in scope and trouble to clean up or clear out!

Some projects involve an excess of inanimate objects (like junk in a garage, leaves on a lawn, dishes in a sink, or dust in the house, for a few examples). However this project involves millions (actually, over time, billions) of dollars and live human beings receiving paychecks, sometimes pensions, filing tax returns.   In short, it is a process in which filing for corporation creates a status that attracts grants, which then go do SOMETHING, allegedly some function.  Even when that “social service” or “justice” function isn’t actually formed done,* the money still keeps pouring out until something is done about it — and streams, rivers of water is a good analogy (in many respects) for the flow of funding.

(* 2021 copyedit for clarity, at least as I think I meant 8 years ago…//LGH)

FYI (just in case you think this is a “disgruntled parent” speaking: No,…), we (my ex-batterer/stalker/deadbeat Dad etc. ex-husband and I) were on the bottom of the two-tier custody track. Had anyone offered me supervised visitation (I even at one point asked), I’d have taken the bait. Contact with my daughters was eliminated ON an “unsupervised visitation” exchange. Like most Moms, at the time I had no clue that federal funds for access visitation to improve [sic] noncustodial outcomes* existed.

But because the courts didn’t label us as a wealthy couple [no real estate involved], we entirely missed the referral to supervised visitation for his battering and stalking or my “alienation” (which wasn’t occurring: all visitations ordered, while they lived with me, were made available. When he got custody, that standard was eliminated immediately, overnight, and never raised its ‘ugly’ head again.

To get to this point of total eradication of the sense of “court order” meaning anything at all, we were sent repeatedly (periodically) through through the revolving door of “wham, bam, thank you ma’am” mandatory mediation, in California. We even “mediated” a felony crime called child-stealing. Mandatory Mediation is indeed Miraculous (California Courts Review, Spring 2006: See p. 16, written by a Judge**) — I see it can even undo restraining orders and undermine criminal law. No wonder the therapeutic jurisprudence community loves it! The DV industry gets its DOJ grants, and the family law professionals get their HHS access/visitation grants, and the kids get a lifetime of wondering which end is up, minus a lot of child support, and stable households.

[**with dual NCJFCJ-AFCC membership.  LGH comment 2021, although I probably knew it in 2013 also].

However, readers should know this is from observation, not personal experience with having been subject to supervised visitation in my own custody case. In our case, they simply switched the kids overnight, end of story (or at least of mother/daughter contact, basically, til they aged out), no factual or legal basis ever given, though I definitely formally requested it of the court.

No, I am against this field: because it sucks as a practice; because the trainers are known to be associated with AFCC, and in conflicts-of-interest positions administering their own grants that help fund it; and because, like AFCC itself, the nonprofits associated have to skip state when caught unincorporated, which they simply do … Perhaps this is why conferences of a Florida-domicile nonprofit have to be held in Ontario, Canada?

“Supervised Visitation” cannot be justified logically, financially, or in any common-sense theater, which is I guess why it has to be promoted under public health & welfare and written up by social service and domestic violence career professionals.


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