June 11th, 2015

Divorce Corp., Shared Parenting in Pennsylvania, Judicial Training Materials in Nebraska

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June 11, 2015

NPO Logo National Parents Organization improves the lives of children and strengthens society by protecting every child’s right to the love and care of both parents after separation or divorce. We seek better lives for children through family court reform that establishes equal rights and responsibilities for fathers and mothers.

An Important Message from the Divorce Corp. Team

Susan SettenbrinoSusan Settenbrino

Last November, Joe Sorge’s organization, Divorce Corp., sponsored an important conference in Washington, D.C. on the need for reform of family courts and family laws. The National Parents Organization was pleased and privileged to be a major player there. One of the many constructive plans to come out of the conference was the creation of a structure to allow everyday people to tell their stories about their treatment by family courts. Now that effort is underway. If you have a story about your experience with family courts, the following message from Divorce Corp. lets you know how to make it public. Most of these will be “horror stories,” but not all. It’s equally useful to let people, courts and lawmakers know what works as well as what doesn’t. Here’s Divorce Corp.’s message:

Divorce Corp. Followers:
We are writing to you with an update from Susan Settenbrino regarding her inquiry to all of you about the success and outcomes of any judicial misconduct complaints you may have filed.

Please see her message to all of you about her new website and plans for the project:

Ms. Settenbrino received overwhelming responses to her inquiry announced here, on DivorceCorp. She wants to thank you for all of your responses and to let you know that she will be addressing them accordingly. Ms.Settenbrino and Greg Roberts have created, to address unchecked power in the government and court system as a whole. Read more…

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NPO’s Stephen Meehan: Pennsylvania Should Consider Shared Parenting Post-Divorce Legislation
By Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

Here’s Meehan’s excellent op-ed in the Philadelphia Business Journal, June 8, 2015. Way to go Stephen!

More than one-third of our nation’s states are taking steps toward allowing more children to grow up with both parents in their lives when parents split, and now is the time for Pennsylvania to join this crucial movement.

At a time when nearly 20 states are considering shared parenting legislation, Pennsylvania leaders and parents have the opportunity to learn about the importance of the reform efforts during a showing of the documentary “Divorce Corp.” near the Pennsylvania Capitol on Tuesday, June 9.
Read more…

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Nebraska: Suit Filed to Gain Access to Judicial Training Materials
By Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
One of the most serious failures of state bar associations is the manner in which they train family court judges about the social science on parenting time as it affects children’s well-being. Family courts routinely cite the “best interests of children” in their rulings, but there’s little to indicate that they’re aware of the masses of social science demonstrating that, when both parents are fit, equal or nearly equal parenting serves children best.

So there’s a movement afoot to gain access to judicial training materials to see just what judges are being taught. Importantly, when Arizona State University professor William Fabricius began teaching judges in that state a few years ago, judicial parenting orders changed radically from mostly sole or primary maternal custody to mostly shared custody. One Arizona activist told me that the training he provided was the single most important factor in changing the culture of family courts regarding parenting time orders.

Now longtime Nebraska advocate for shared parenting, Dr. Les Veskrna, has filed a lawsuit against the Administrator of the state courts seeking those training materials. He requested them under the state’s Public Records Act, but was denied access. Now he’s filed suit. We’ll be following that suit carefully to see if the state’s judiciary will require itself to open its records to the public that pays their salaries.

Read more…

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About Us
National Parents Organization
PO BOX 270760
Boston, Massachusetts 02127-0760
(617) 542-9300


Information Resources

> Share Your Story:

Members share stories of their children and families.
> Advice:
Our most frequently asked questions are posted with answers from experts.
> Forms and Documents:
Many forms and documents are common to many cases in your state or even across the United States.

Establish an Affiliation in Your State

National Parents Organization is working to build a strong affiliate in every state. What will it take to bring National Parents Organization to your state? Leadership. It takes a team of volunteers to organize in your state and to reach out to legislators, media, and other groups who will work with us to make shared parenting the norm.

If you are ready, please contact Ned Holstein, National Interim Executive Director. Together we can build an affiliate in your state.


Michigan Family Courts Ban Cellphone Recordings
June 10, 2015 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

The more citizens and aggrieved parents seek information about family courts, the more those courts seem to want to act in secret. Recipients of this week’s National Parents Organization newsletter will be informed about the refusal of the Nebraska family courts to allow the public to know what training materials they use to educate judges about the best interests of children as it relates to time with their parents post-divorce. Now, you may well wonder what can be the need for secrecy about such a benign thing as judicial training materials, but it’s taken a lawsuit by a Nebraska father to pry the information out of them. And it hasn’t happened yet. So we hope to find out in the near future about what social science judges are being taught and how it’s affecting their parenting orders. Read more…

Braver and Ellman: Everyday People Disagree with Child Support Laws, Guidelines
June 8, 2015 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
In the United States and the United Kingdom, everyday people have significantly different views on child support from what is reflected in the laws governing its establishment and enforcement. That is one salient finding of a new study conducted by Arizona State University professors Sanford Braver (emeritus) and Ira Ellman. The views of everyday people are better informed, more child-centered and more realistic than are those of the laws. That is my view of Braver and Ellman’s findings. Read more…

Working Mothers ‘Punished’ by Stay-at-Home Dads
June 7, 2015 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
This article (New Zealand Herald, 6/4/15) is so bad that the same publication ran this piece one day later advising readers to “ignore” it (New Zealand Herald, 6/5/15). And that, my friends is a pretty bad article. Unsurprisingly, it’s based on one or two badly done studies. Read more…

Acceptance of the Concept of Parental Alienation Grows
June 5, 2015 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization
Yes, this article appeared in the Huffington Post (Huffington Post, 5/26/15). That’s remarkable because the article is a good, informative piece on parental alienation. The writer, Traci L. Slatton, actually knows something about PA and delivers the information to readers in an even-handed way. Yes, this is the Huffington Post. Read more…

Canadian Dad Told to Pay Foster Care Fees for Abducted Daughter
June 4, 2015 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

For six years, a Canadian child protective authority kept a girl in foster care despite knowing the identity and contact information for her father. Now it wants to charge him $7,800 for the cost of that foster care. Read about it here (CTV News, 6/1/15). Read more…


Volunteer to help NPO achieve our objectives in numerous legislative,legal and media campaigns by organizing at a local level, making change happen on the ground, in your State.
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Volunteer Testimonial

“I have been a step-parent for over 20 years and now am a doting grandmother to two beautiful granddaughters. By spending time with my step-children through the years, I have seen first-hand the wants and needs of children whose parents are divorced or separated. I believe children deserve the opportunity to love and to spend time with both of their parents equally through shared parenting.”

Paula Cuesy
Paula Cuesy, Member,
California Executive Committee
The opinions expressed herein are those of our guest authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Parents Organization or its Board of Directors.
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