Remember, Remember the 5th of November, The gunpowder treason and plot,
I see no reason why Gunpowder Treason should ever be forgot

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01 Martin Luther King
03-Saint Patricks' Day, Mar 17
04-Passover or Easter-Ishtar-Ashtoreth?
05 Israel's Birthday:  May 14th
05 Islam's Suicide Killers
05 Victoria Day:  EP Trek Handoff to US
05  Hyack Festival, New Westminster
05  Sara Carlin, RIP:  Anti-Depressant
06 Equal Parenting Trek - US
06 Manley, Perry, RIP:  Seattle
07 Canada Day:  Marching Time
08  Bailey, Russell- RIP
08  Fredrickson, Rick-RIP: Adoption Veto
08  Lohstroh, Rick, RIP: PAS Patricide
09 Equal Parenting Trek-CA
09 Yom Teruah / Trumpets
09 Yom Kippur / Day of Atonement
09 Sukkot / Feast of Tabernacles
10 Reformation Day, Oct 31
10 Renouf, Andy:  Judicial Kleptomania
11 Fawkes / Vendetta Nov 5
11 Remembrance Day, Nov 11
12 Santa March
McLachlin's Treasonous Judiciary
Equal Parenting Trek Calendar
EP Trek - 1998:  Special Joint Committiee
EP Trek - 2000:  Anne Cools:  DV Scam
EP Trek - 2001:  Jeff Unruh, Debtors Prison, Themis
EP Trek - 2004:  BURNABY BATMAN of F4J
EP Trek -  2005: Arnie Hein's Cross My Heart Trek
EP Trek - 2006, Rob Pedersen's EP Cycle Trek
EP Trek - 2007:  Rob McKenzie's EP Cycle Trek
EP Trek - 2008:  Ron Smith's EP Trek to DC Rally
EP Trek - 2009:  MP Vellacott,  EP Bill C-422
EP Trek - 2010: Dave Nash's EP Trek 2010
EP Trek - 2011:  ANGUS Vs FMEP aka Themis
EP Trek - 2012:  Lucien Khodeir, Kari Simpson
EP Trek - 2013:  Earl Silverman, RIP, Barbara Kay
EP Trek - 2014: MP Vellacott EP Bill, C-560

Senator Anne Cools, FTSOTC Chair on False Accusations & Lying Lawyers

Senator Anne Cools, formerly Liberal, now Conservative, on False Accusations & Law Societies' permitting Lawyers to Lie in Court

"'..  mothers and fathers should have equal rights in the raising of their children, regardless of marital break down"

Anne Cools - Google Search
Anne Cools - Google Video

Canadian Bill s-12, senator cools - Google Search

"Honorable senators know that I have studied a terrible and pernicious heart of darkness that has developed in our court system, being the use of FALSE ACCUSATIONS in civil justice.

"This is the mischief of litigating parties, usually mothers, suddenly within the context of divorce and within child custody proceedings falsely accusing the other party, usually fathers, of the sexual abuse of their own children.    ,,,    

"These FALSE ACCUSATIONS are often made with the overt or covert complicity of their lawyers. They are a lethal weapon in the business of parental alienation. They are a tool for achieving sole custody of children and creating fatherlessness."




2004-06-08  SENATOR ANNE COOLS LEAVES LIBERAL FOLD TO JOIN CONSERVATIVES  

Senator Anne Cools Runs Away With The Suns's 10 Top Women Poll, Kevin Connor, TO Sun

2004-06-08  Liberal senator < Anne Cools >  goes Conservative

1997-10-28 Child Custody and Access Reform, Special Joint Committee Established

Erin PizzeyMore:  Issues:  Cools, Senator Anne
Issues: False Accusations;
Isues Women's Shelters' Scam
News:  Liberal Hedy Fry / Status of Women (SOW):
News:  Cross, Pamela:Feminist Law:  Female Accusers must not be required to face those they accuse of Violence;
Issues:  Domestic Violence Scam & "Women's Studies" Propaganda
Issues:  Pizzey, Erin: Women's Shelter Scam;
Issues:  "Women's Shelter" Gulags:  Lesbian Brainwashing & Seduction Camps
Issues:  Cools, Senator Anne: Lying Lawyers;
News:  Liberal Hedy Fry / Status of Women (SOW):
Issuess:  False Accusations;
Issues:  Child Trafficking by Public Officers & Judges

Equal Parenting How To's

Equal Parenting is like a Three Layer Cake. 

"Without Cause or Consent, no Child shall be removed from a Natural Parent!!!

"Two Equal Parents may .. agree to unequal Parenting Time, but this does NOT impugn the Parental Authority of either Natural Parent relative to Third Party Interlopers.

1.  The Bottom Layer:  The Initial Equal Parenting Agreement

Initial Equal Parenting Agreement creating full time, all time equality of both natural parents, subordinate to no third parties (a Constitutional right ignored by most Family Courts); a series of tentative Parenting Timetables for each year and statement of intent, or  "Wishes"; the requirement that the tentative Parenting Timetable laid out there will be reviewed and finalized annually and incorporated into the Annual Parenting Supplement.  Parental authority and discretion is always equal and unaffected by inequalities of Parenting Time allocations.

2.  Middle Layer:  The Annual Supplement & its Parenting Timetable

At-A-Glance® Erasable Yearly Vertical Jumbo Wall Calendar, 48" x 32", 2005Yearly Annual Parenting Supplements for planning the school year and finalizing the Parenting Timetable for the upcoming  parenting year.  Parenting Timetable must meet the test for equality established in 1) the initial Equal Parenting Agreement.

3.  Top Layer:  Autonomy of Both Equal Parents on all matters not previously Constrained.

Parenting Timetable alternates all residual parenting questions between the two otherwise equal parents who are subordinate to no third parties.  Full autonomy of each parent during their Parenting Time as allotted in the agreed Parenting Timetable on all residual parenting questions not previously constrained by Covenants in the initial Equal Parenting Agreement, or the current Annual Parenting Supplement.  Full discretion on residual parenting with the Timetabled Parent, but flexibility encouraged and provided by Ad Hoc Agreements.

4.  Icing on the Cake.....

Forget about the Courts, and your Ex, and go have fun with your kids!!!







More:  About:  Equal Parenting How To's:  Three Layer Cake;
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting;
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;
About: EPT =  Equal Parenting Trek;
About:  EP Trek Generic Calendar:
Issues:  Kinship Families or Grandparents raising Children::

Beware of the "Parental Rights" IMPOSTER!!!!

"Natural Parent's Rights" Vs "Parent's Rights"

Be on the lookout for the "Parent's Rights" IMPOSTER.  Insist on "Natural Parents Only", please!

It comes as a big surprise to us that many groups that present themselves as "Parents Rights" groups  REFUSE to defend the  NATURAL PARENT, and  and to demand RESTORATION of Natural Parents Rights taken from Canadians in the Homosexual Marriage legislation.

Instead their position to promote the "rights" of  a "Parent" in the widest sense of the word, making NO distinction  between NATURAL PARENTS and wannaabe Legal Parents.  They have bowed to University of Victoria's  assertion that  the SCC's Trociuk Decision "endorses a Heterosexual View of the Family and must be ignored", legitimizing the ongoing Child Trafficking by the State which views Canadian children as State Property and merchandise for  sale in the lucrative Child Adoption Market  They refuse to be hampered by prior obligations to that pesky Natural Parent who thinks they can Veto an Adoption.


It appears that many "Fathers Rights" groups commonly fall in with the United Nations and Liberal Irwin Cotler's assertion that the Child's Right is to be protected, but the Natural Parent has "NO RIGHTS", making the State, not the Natural Parents the Protector of the Child..

Without Cause or Consent, no Child shall be removed from a Natural Parent!!!

More:  About:  Beware of the IMPOSTER!!!!  "Natural Parent's Rights" Vs "Parent's Rights";
News:  Lessard, Hester - Heterosexual view of Parenthood must be ignored
News:  Smith, Judge Daphne, BCSC, for Child Trafficking;
Issues:  Trociuk, Darrell;
Issues:  Child Trafficking, Canadian;
Testimonials:  Rick Fredrickson of Saskatoon

EPT = Equal Parenting Trek

EP Trek is an annual "Progressive Convention" of EP Roundups

equal parenting trek - Google Search;
equal parenting trek - Google Video;

First executed by Arnie Hein, the Equal Parenting Trek is our attempt to create a "Progressive Convention" of geographically sequenced Equal Parenting Roundups

US Roundup Speakers













Canadian Roundup Speakers



























Other Roundup Speakers



More:  About:  EPT =  Equal Parenting Trek;
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;
EP Trek Generic Calendar;
About:  Equal Parenting How To's:  Three Layer Cake;
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting;
EP Trek Generic Calendar:
Issues:  Kinship Families or Grandparents raising Children::
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting

Paul Forseth, former MP for New Westminster - Coquitlam, 
FTSOTC Panelist

Paul Forseth, MP - Google Search

1999-12-xx_FORSETH-Petition.pdf

"Conservatives are committed to Shared Parenting. The national party “Policy Declaration” that was passed by delegates at our March 2005 Montreal convention says clearly that: Shared Parenting: is an objective of the Conservative Party of Canada.

A Conservative Government will make the necessary changes to the Divorce Act to ensure that in the event of a marital breakdown, the Divorce Act will allow both parents and all grandparents to maintain a meaningful relationship with their children and grandchildren, unless it is clearly demonstrated not to be in the best interests of the children".

1997-10-28 Child Custody and Access Reform, Special Joint Committee Established

More:  Issues:  Forseth, MP Paul: FTSOTC Panelist;
Issues: Vellacott, Maurice, MP:  Equal Parenting Advocate, Bill C-422;
About:  Equal Parenting How-Tos, "Three Layer Cake";
Issues:  Kruk, Edward:  "Child Custody, Access & Parental Responsibility";
Issues:  Hill, Jay MP for presumptive joint custody on divorce, Bill C-245;
Issues:  Galloway, Roger MP: FTSOTC Panelist
Issues:  Toews, Vic:  Age of Consent;

 Issues:  Pizzey, Erin: Women's Shelter Scam;
Issues:  "Women's Shelter" Gulags:  Lesbian Brainwashing & Seduction


"Who IS your 'Mommy' and 'Daddy', little girl?.  UVic Law Profesor Hester Lessard. says, "What makes you think  your "Parents" are your NATURAL PARENTS? Don't you know that Heterosexist terms like 'Mommy" & "Daddy" is offensive to Homosexuals?  We The Correns. Image Source: The Vancouver Sunwill have to re-educate you with our friends at the BC Teachers Federation and the Human Rights Tribunal to rid you of your crude "biological  concepts of Parenthood" and your "heterosexual view of the family" on pain of harsh penalties.

  

<Paraphrased Synthesis follows.> 

With our buddies at the Human Rights Tribunal and the Courts we have with NO STATUTORY BASIS  established  that HOMOSEXUAL RIGHTS trump NATURAL PARENTS' RIGHTS By exercising the Courts in Homosexualist Doctrine, the outcome of any contest between a homosexual "Legal Parent" wannabe and the "Natural Parent" has been predetermined, because we have now established that "NATURAL PARENTS HAVE NO RIGHTS".  Our demands for Homosexual Marriage is now purging from Canadian Statute the term "Natural Parent", displacing it with the term "Legal Parent".

Resistance is Futile.  We Judges, Lawyers, Social Workers, and Teachers will decide who will be your LEGAL PARENTS are.  We have our lackeys in the federal Liberals (Irwin Cotler) announcing

 

"NATURAL PARENTS HAVE NO RIGHTS"

Liberal Irwin Cotler:  "Natural Parents have NO RIGHTS"

Irwin Cotler, former Liberal "Justice" Minister robbed Canadians of their NATURAL PARENTS' Rights

Irwin Cotler - Google Search;
Irwin Cotler - Google Video

"Natural Parents have NO RIGHTS....  ONLY RESPONSIBILITIES....

"Natural Parents' Rights now  gone with my Homosexual Marriage bill"

16.10 Maximum Contact & Friendly Parent Rule has to go to conform to Judicial Practice, or Judges may be held in criminal BREACH OF TRUST"

FYI, the ideas that the State assigns Rights & Responsibilities to it's Citizen is straight from pre-war Nazi Germany.   Under the British system rights are not State-given, but God Given.

Buying into the Court's position that what rights remain are Children's Rights, is buying into the same position that "<Natural> Parents have no rights", and Canadian Children are at birth the property of the Courts.

More:  News:  Cotler, Irwin:  "Natural Parents have NO RIGHTS...;
News:  European Union;
Issues:  Paul Watson:  Nazi Origins of European Union;;;
Issues: G. Edward  Griffin ;
Issues: Fabian Socialism;

Bill Graham, Liberal <Pedophile> Leader & Defense Minister



Bill Graham, mp - Google Search;
Bill Graham, mp - Google Video

Lawrence Metherel - Google Search

2007-06-19  Liberal MP Bill Graham announces resignation

"In spite of credible revelations dating back to April 2002 about Bill Graham, a sex addicted bi-sexual sodomizing a 15 year old male prostitute named Lawrence Metherel, Paul Martin allowed Graham to remain Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister - and eventually named him to the portfolio of Minister of Defense.

"On Sept. 28/2005 a vote was held in Parliament to raise the age of consent from 14 (one of the lowest age of consents in the world) to 16 (an age which many still consider too low).

"Bill Graham, Paul Martin, and Anne McLellan, on Sept. 28th, voted against raising the age of consent to 16

More:  News:  Graham, Bill:  Pedophile Parliamentarian, Defense Minister

Liberal Anne McLellan says "Joint Custody Perpetuates the domination of men over women"


Former Liberal Justice Minister, Deputy Prime Minister

Anne McLellan , MP - Google Search

In "Women and the Process of Constitutional Reform" McLellan warns that <Horrors!> "Provincial Legislatures may impose a presumption of Joint Custody... and perpetuate the domination of men over women"  

The Liberal Party and Child Sexual Abuse

More:  News:  McLellan , Liberal Anne "Joint Custody Perpetuates the domination of men over women"

Clyde Hertzman, MD:  World Bank Consultant,


"HELP" = Human Early Learning Partnerships:  School Based Family Surveillance Systems

Clyde Hertzman, World Bank - Google Search;
Clyde Hertzman - Google Video

"HELP invents ideological policy-based evidence to push for increasing institutional child care and decreasing the time children spend with parents"



Clyde Hertzman wants to know everything he can about about your family and children.  He and his Human Early Learning Partnerships program has been successful in subverting  our privacy laws to legalize his collection, analysis, and reporting of  your family's personal information to global policy makers.

Human Early Learning Partnerships - Google Search;
Human Early Learning Partnerships - Google Video


More:  News:  Hertzman, Clyde: World Bank Consultant;
Issues:  Universal Day Care Scam, OECD Displacment of NPs
News:  OECD = Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development, Global Prosperity Shared Globally

Universal Day Care Scam:  OECD Displacement of Natural Parents

The so called "sperm to worm" vision of Liberal Governments to regulate every activity of Canadians is pushing to get also into the Universal Daycare business. Pushing with them are private interests looking for new government contracts. 

We fully support Kids' First position that Governments should stay OUT of the Day Care business and instead restore the Direct Funding to Natural Parents lost during successive Liberal and Mulroney Governments.  We want to see further Direct Funding for the Nurture of Natural Parents of Canadian Children instead of creating another expansion of the typically abusive and  treacherous Public Service.

More:  Issues:  Universal Day Care Scam, OECD Displacment of NPs;
News:  Hertzman, Clyde: World Bank Consultant;
News:  OECD = Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development

News:  Drucker,Peter:  Globalization of National Socialism (Nazism),  Luciferianism;
News:  Strong, Maurice:  Global Socialism, Global Warming Fraud;
Issues:  Ward, Helen:  Universal Daycare, OECD Displacement of Natural Parents;
Issues:  Warren, Elizabeth : Collapse of the Middle Class;
Issues:  Phyllis Schlafly:  Judicial Globalism, Supremacy of Parliament, Global Government

Katherine Albrecht:  Radio Frequency ID (RFID) Chip Surveillance, "RFID Spychips"

RFID = Radio Frequency IDentification

Katherine Albrecht - Google Search;
RFID Spychips, Albrecht - Google Video


More:  Issues:  Albrecht, Katherine:  RFID Spychips;
Issues:  ACTA = Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement
News:  Verichip RFID
Issues:  Aaron Russo: Rockefellers;
Issues:  Big Brother Micro-Management

Verichip (CHIP) = Positive ID (CHIP), RFID  Surveillance




Verichip - Google Search
PositiveID Corporation - Google Search

More:  News:  Verichip (CHIP) = Positive ID (CHIP), RFID  Surveillance;
Issues:  Albrecht, Katherine:  RFID Spychips
Issues:  RFID Spychips;  
Issues:  Aaron Russo: Rockefellers;

ACTA = Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement

Full Time, All Time Surveillance & Search of your digital activity

"This treaty is being negotiated in secret. It will further erode privacy rights. The government will have access to private information without a warrant or probable cause."  

Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) - Google Search;
Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) - Google Videos 

A super-national global agency is being created to monitor all your digital information, purportedly to protect "Copyrights".  Minor offences will result in your loss of internet services.

obama, acta - Google Search

2003-03-26  Use a Firewall, Go to Jail

More:  Issues:  ACTA = Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement;
Issues:  Net Neutrality:  Keep Internet Free!!;
News:  RIAA =  Recording Industry Ass / Am

Paul Grignon:  "Money As Debt"

Producer’s Comments on the Movie, Money as Debt

council on foreign relations - Google Search

More:  Isssues:  Money as Debt / Money Masters;
Issues:  Grignon, Paul: "Money As Debt"
Issues: Griffin, G. Edward, Jeckle Island;
Issues:  North American Union, NAU

G. Edward Griffin, "The Creature From Jekyll Island A Second Look at the Federal Reserve"

G. Edward Griffin - Google Videos

More: Issues:  Griffin, G. Edward;
Issues:  Dodd, Norman:  Congressional Investigator & former Banker;
Issues:  Russo, Aaron;
Issues:  Quigley,  Carrol;

Bill Still: 
"Money Masters",
"The Secret of Oz"

Bill Still - Google Search;
Bill Still - Google Video

Money Masters - Google Search

More: Issues:  Still, Bill:  "Money Masters", "Secret of Oz";
Issues:  Grignon, Paul: "Money As Debt"
Issues: Griffin, G. Edward, Jeckle Island;
Issues:  North American Union, NAU

Kari Simpson,
RoadKill Radio


Archived shows

CALL IN  ( 604) 525-4167  .. 
WHERE www.roadkillradio.com
WHEN:    Tuesdays @ 7:30-9:30 pm

Kari Simpson, RoadKill Radio - Google Search

Kari Simpson, RoadKill Radio - Google Videos

EMAIL THE SHOW LIVE:
Roadkillradio@live.ca 
Kari Simpson is executive director of the Citizen's Research Institute in Langley, B.C.

More:  Issues:  Simpson, Kari

Common Law Perverted by Activist Judges and Legal Oligarchy

Chapter VII. The English Common Law. Section 57. The Norman Conquest

A beautiy of British  Common Law is that it is STATIC, and NOT DYNAMIC as these Activist Judges would have you think.

Ask a lawyer what "Common Law" is and they will likely tell you it is "Judge Made Law", and expand up this to say "Common Law is whatever the Judges are commonly saying these days"

This is completely FALSE.  The Judges are Agents of the Crown and they BY DEFINITION Judges are WITHOUT CAPACITY to make any law whatsoever.  Since 1649, only PARLIAMENT has the Capacity to make Law.

British Common law was NOT created by Judges, it was only observed and documented by individuals sent out by the newly Norman Crown after the Norman Conquest of 1066  to observe and codify the laws and customs of the various peoples of Britain..  This was done with a view to aggregate existing customs which may vary across the land,  into a unified body of Laws.  The Authority quoted by the Commoners in their administration of Common Law were frequently direct quotations from the Bible and principles of Danelaw

The process of documentation took only a couple of hundred years, and the product was a STATIC body of Law which was historical, popular, and has served in the intervening centuries as a Benchmark against which Statutory Law may be measured for "Fairness".  It does NOT change.

More:   Issues:  Common Law Perverted by Activist Judges and Legal Oligarchy;
Issues:  "Judicial Interpretation" to pervert Statutes of Parliament;
Issues:  Judicial Activism is Breach of Trust;
Issues:  Judicial Globalization is Treason

Ann Coulter:  Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Assembly

Ann coulter - Google Search;
Ann Coulter - Google Video 

2010-03-23  Ann Coulter's speech in Ottawa cancelled

2010-03-22_University of Ottawa's letter to Ann Coulter

2009-02-18  Joy Behar and Ann Coulter

More:  Issues:  Coulter, Ann:  Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Assembly;
Issues:  Levant, Ezra:  Freedom of Speech;
Issues:  Paul, Ron
Issues:  "Hate Crime" Thought Police, Tyranny of Human Rights Tribunals;
News:  Shaw, Duncan:  BC Judge for retailing Child Pornography;
News:  Robinson, Svend  NDP MP, Lawyer & Thief for "Hate Crimes" Legislation;
Issues:  "Special Prosecutors"  for Lawyers & Judges;

Arnie Hein's, "Cross My Heart" Equal Parenting Trek CA 2005

Arnie Hein "Cross My Heart" - Google Search;
Arnie Hein "Cross My Heart" - Google Video

Arnie Hein is embarking on a cross-Canada cycle to raise awareness regarding the Father being stripped of the family by the Family Court System. He is seeking fairness.

" I want my kids back, at least half the time. I want this law that removes children from their fathers - and fathers from their children -to change. I am cycling across Canada to raise awareness of this problem.

I need other fathers to know they are not alone. I want to unify the men and children abused by this Family Court System. It is important that the general public becomes aware of this problem. "


Arnie Hein

More:  Issues:  Hein, Arnie: "Cross My Heart" Equal Parenting Trek 2005;
Meetings:  Equal Parenting Trek 2005;
Issues:  Debtors's Prison Reinstituted;
Issues:  Passports Removed to Appease Femi-Nazis;
Issues:  Driver's Licenses removed to appease "Femi-Nazis";
Testimonials:  Jeffery, Hal & Danica;
Issues:  Imputed income;
Issues:  Child Support Fraud;

Barbara Kay, National Post

Barbara Kay - Google Search;
Barbara Kay - Google Video

"In Ontario alone, the names Cornwall, Prescott, and London became synonymous with "respectable" pedophile rings -- lawyers, doctors, police officers and Catholic clergymen -- that for decades preyed on society's most vulnerable boys."

2010-01-21 The Domestic Violence Industry’s War on Men

2007-09-26 Forgetting the male victims of child abuse, Barbara Kay

2006-06-14  Welcome to the matriarchy, Barbara Kay;




More.... Issues:  Barbara Kay,  National Post;
Testimonials:  Prior, Byron: Sexual Abuse;
News:  Mount Cashel Orphanage, St. John's NL;
Issues:  Boys Of St. Vincent <Mount Cashel, NL>
News: Southin, Mary: BC Judge backs Pedophilia, Solicitation of Children for Sexual Activities;
News:  Ramsay, Judge David BC Judge & Pedophile
News:  Orr, Judge David:  Protection of Pedophiles in Public Service;
News:  Hickman, T. Alex, NL Judge, alleged Pedophile & Town Tyrant
Testimonials:   Earle, Shane: Mount Cashel Orphange, NL;
Testimonials: Samson, Pierre:  Duplessis Orphans, QU
News:  Duplessis Orphans:  Nazi Experiments Orphange, NL
Issues: Child Trafficking by Public Officers & Judges;
Issues:  Judicial Freemasonry
Issues:  Judicial Interpretation;
News:  Crowley, Aleister:  Luciferian Freemasonry, Homosexual Pedophilia & Pederasty;

Warren Farrell:  Why Men Earn More, Myth of Male Power

Warren Farrell - Google Search
Warren Farrell - Google Videos

More:  Issues:  Warren Farrell:  Why Men Earn More, Myth of Male Power

Lord Christopher Monckton:  Gore's Global Warming Fraud

Lord Christopher Monckton - Google Search;
Lord Christopher Monckton - Google Videos

2006-11-05   Climate chaos? Don't believe it, Lord Christopher Monckton

More:  Monckton, Lord Christopher:  Gore's Global Warming Fraud;
News:  Obama's Fake Birth Certificate;
News:  Obama;s Muslim Faith;
Issues:  Paul Watson:  Nazi Origins of the European Union

Edward F Blick, Phd:  Global Warming Myth & Marxism

Edward F Blick, Phd - Google Search

2010-01-21_Blick-GlobalWarmingMyth.pdf;

2009-03-30  100 plus scientists rebuke Obama as ‘simply incorrect’ on global warming

2008-10-03 Blick:  UN Infects Science with Cancer of Global Warming.pdf

More:  Issues:   Blick, Edward:  Global Warming Myth & Marxism;

Antony C Sutton:  Wall Street & the Rise of Hitler

Anhony C Sutton - Google Search;
Anhony C Sutton - Google Videos

 

More:  Sutton, Anhony C: Wall Street & the Rise of Hitler

Maurice  Strong of Power Corp, PetroCan, UN


Global Warming Scam for Global Socialism

Maurice Strong - Google Search;
Maurice Strong - Image Search;

Strong has built his career acting as the Agent of various international money men.  He is not the driving force or decision-maker, apparently, and has since the age of seventeen been transferring ownership of Canadian Resources out of the country, making himself a Traitor.  He has fled to communist China.


Club of Rome, Maurice Strong - Google Search

 

More: News:  Strong, Maurice, Global Warming Scam;
 Issues:  Ventura, Jesse:  Conspiracy Theory;
News:  Obama's Fake Birth Certificate
Issues:  Quigley,  Carroll...  "Tragedy & Hope";
Issues:  Dodd, Norman:  Congressional Investigator & former Banker;
Issues:  Griffin, G. Edward:  Creature From Jekyll Island;
Issues:  Russo, Aaron:  "America, Freedom to Fascism";

Pierre Trudeau, BIH,
1919 – 2000


Pal of Gorbachev & Castro; Critic of Thatcher & Regan

Pierre Trudeau, Maurice Strong - Google Search

Pierre E Trudeau is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as being the Prime Minister with the longest time in office of any Commonwealth PMO, having a 23 year "reign of terror"..  He popularized open contempt for the Electorate with his "Fuddle Duddle" responses to questions and his "Trudeau Salute".  Strangely, many Canadians thought more of him for it.  That tells you something about Canadians!


By talking the Provinces into going to the Judiciary for "Binding Arbitration" on future Constitutional Amendments during the nefarious "Constitution Act, 1982", Trudeau gave the Judiciary it's first toe into the formerly closed door on Parliamentary Supremacy and Judicial subordination to Parliament.


Trudeau then invited Supreme Court Judges to make decisions he couldn't survive if he took them to the Electorate; and encouraged the Judiciary and PACs to expand their role in Governmental decision making.  Making Activist Judges in the SCC the norm, he successfully conned Canadians into thinking  Parliament is bound by SCC's decisions.  By this skillful lawyering.    Trudeau successfully sidestepped both Parliamentary Accountability to the Electorate, and to their Protector, the Queen.




 

Canadians  have been so slow in correcting Trudeau's displacement of Parliament with Judicial Oligarchy,  Judges are now openly and regularly striking down Parliamentary Statutes, and committing with impunity High Treason by incorporating Judgments of Foreign Judges and legislative bodies into Canadian Orders, and writing Legislative scripts for lackey parliamentarians like James Moore  Affirmative Action Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin as Judicial Whip for insists Canadian Judges be far more aggressive in asserting the power of Trudeaus' Judicial Oligarchy to speedily harmonize Canadian Statute with the Global Judiciary's specifications..

FYI, virtually everything Trudeau accomplished in 1982 can be undone via the  "Notwithstanding Clause"

More:  News:  Trudeau, Pierre:  Pals with Gorbachev & Castro, Critic of Thatcher & Regan;
News:  Strong, Maurice, Global Warming Scam;
News:  Fabian Society, Communitarian "Wolves in Sheep's' Clothing";
News:  John Dewey, Educating Americans for Hegelian Communitarianism, (AKA Marxism)

Obama's Muslim Faith


Obama's Muslim Faith - Google Video
Obama's global currency / reserve notes - Google Video

"Quran commands Muslims to TERRORIZE unbelievers".

"War is Deceit"

"Pretend you are your Enemy's Friend.... and then Kill him"

“Slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them, and confine them, and lie in wait for them at every place of ambush” (from Sura 9)

Fitna - Google Video

Revolution Muslim - Google Search;
Revolution Muslim - Google Video



More:  News:  Obama's Muslim Faith;
News:  Obama's Fake Birth Certificate & Presidential Ineligibility;
Testimonials:  Jessen, Gianna: Right to Life for Children surviving Abortions, Born Alive Truth
Issues:  William Wagener:  "On Second Thought";;
Funstuff:  Biltz, Mark:  Blood Moons over Isreal;
Issues:  Russo, Aaron:  "America, Freedom to Fascism"

Funstuff:  Life of Christ, ESV

bcrevolution.ca

BC Parents & Teachers for Life

EP-BC Calendar
forthesakeofthechildren.blog-city.com
HandsOnEqualParent.org.nz
Hugs to Heartbreak
HelpStopPAS.com
jointcustodymn.org, MN
Equal Parenting Tracts

Christian Legal Fellowship
feminist4fathers.blogspot.com
sharedparentingworks.org
queenofequality.blogspot.com
Fighting against False Allegations
Int'l Directory of Mens Rights groups

Fathers-4-Justice.org
HandsOnEqualParent TRUST
Can. Family Action Coalition
marriagecanada.ca

Maurice Vellacott, MP,   Equal Parenting Advocate introduces Bill 422

Bill 422, Divorce Act - Google Search

Maurice Vellacott, MP - Google Search

2009-06-16_Vellacout-Equal-Shared-Parenting-Bill.mp3

2009.08-xx_Analysis-Bill-422 -Amend-DivorceAct-National Association of Women.pdf

National Association of Women and the Law - Google Search  <probably another government funded organization to displace Natural Parents & promote State-Ownership of Children, lawyers and Femi-Nazism>

More:  Issues:  MP Maurice Vellacott;
About:  Equal Parenting How-Tos

No "Fitness Test" for Equal Parenting

We oppose the Fitness Test incorporated by the slogan  "Both Fit Parents"

External, existing legislation on Parental Fitness is sufficient on Fitness, and it is necessary that Equal Parenting legislation be SILENT on a Parental Fitness.

Edward Kruk:  Child Custody, Access & Parental Responsibility

edward kruk, ubc - Google Search edward kruk, ubc - Google Videos

Road Kill Radio Show #70 Download Part 1, Ed Kruk

2008-12-xx_Kruk-Child-Custody(full).pdf

Dr. Gordon Neufeld: "Preserving Attachment"


gordon neufeld - Google Search
gordon neufeld - Google Videos

More:  Issues:  Dr. Gordon Neufeld: "Preserving Attachment";
Issues:  Parental Alienation;
Issues:  John McManus:  Stopping the North American Union

Skeletons in the Closet, 2001

Skeletons in the Closet

Skeletons in the Closet, a film drawn from the dramatized lives of families living with a protected Pedophile and the mental illness it may create when a loving, faithful, Victim keeps the Secret.  This is shockingly common.  The Secret is their Power - BREAK IT!  (You would be well advised to stay away from the Public Servant.)

The Canadian Parliament MUST:

  1. Impress on the Canadian Courts  the Supremacy of Parliament, as  expressed in the legislation of the  Canadian Parliament.  Judges  are not  the "New Priests" of Canada, creating their own "Law" and ruling by "Divine Right". (Judges are New Priests) ; 2000-xx-xx  "The Charter Revolution & The Court Party" They may not hijack the legislative process in the execution of the PUBLIC TRUST placed in them to ADMINISTER our LEGISLATION created in Parliament.

  2. Put into Law and practice the major components of  48 Recommendations  such as the equality of male and female parents.  It seems the Charter, the trump law of Canadian legislation has been too easily ignored by those entrusted with the administration of our Canadian legislation.

  3. Purge the law and practice of  the "Child Support Guidelines" of feminarcissism and hyperbolic reasoning. and make mothers equally burdened by it.

The most outrageous example of Judges usurping the role of Parliament is, of course  these "New Priests"  making the false claim  that the Charter's  protection against discrimination based on "sex" means protection against discrimination based on "sexual orientation".  Does the Charter  protect sexual orientations such as  polygamists, pedophiles and bestiality?  Of course not! 

What the Charter DOES say is:

S.15. (1) Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, SEX, age or mental or physical disability.

S.28. Notwithstanding anything in this Charter, the rights and freedoms referred to in it are guaranteed equally to MALE and FEMALE persons.

The Charter makes absolutely NO REFERENCE to SEXUAL ORIENTATION.  This is simply a wish of the Judiciary they have read into the Charter, while  ignoring the clear wishes of the Electorate.  On this point they have simply been taking care of their own.  See: Egan v. Canada

Similarly the Family Law Judges, in BC especially, typically ignore the Statutes of Parliament in the Divorce Act, which require Judges to remove custodial rights of a Parent who will not use those rights to maintain the relationship with the other parent, usually the mother, and assign those rights to the other parent, usually the father.

The Charter's usage of the word "sex" is as the common usage of "gender".  The Charter's clear intent is that there to be no discrimination between male and female, even in such questions as Parenting.   The Courts are driven inexorably towards Equal Parenting by the Charter, the "Supreme Law of Canada".  And yet they do not comply with our instructions to them in the Statutes of a duly elected Parliament.   

More... Issues:  Parliament Must;     "Friendly Parent Rule" 16.10 , AKA "Maximum Contact" ignored, almost eliminated by Liberal Party of Canada;      Custody Orders not Enforced when Moms are in Breach;      Parental Alienation & "PAS";      Fabian Socialism, AKA Stealth Communism

Norman Dodd:  Congressional Investigator, former Banker

Norman Dodd, Griffin - Google Videos

Norman Dodd was a Banker and an eye-witness to the Crash of 1929.  Later he was a Congressional Investigator of Tax Exempt Foundations during the Reese Committee, 1959.

This interview outlines his discovery that some of the largest Tax Exempt Foundations are Fabian Socialists having among their objectives the re-education of the US, conditioning it to be  "comfortably merged with the Soviet Union".

In preparation for this assimilation, these same Tax Exempt Foundations, including the Rockefeller Foundation  are indoctrinating our youngsters with their tyrannical Socialist perspectives.

More:  Issues:  Quigley,  Carroll...  "Tragedy & Hope";
Issues:  Dodd, Norman:  Congressional Investigator & former Banker;
Issues:  Griffin, G. Edward:  Creature From Jekyll Island A Second Look at the Federal Reserve;
Issues:  Russo, Aaron:  "America, Freedom to Fascism"

Mark Biltz, Blood Moons over Israel 2008-2015

Mark Biltz - Google Search ;
Mark Biltz, - Google Video

More:  Funstuff:  Mark Biltz, Blood Moons over Israel 2008-2015;
Funstuff:  Life of Christ, ESV;
Issues:  Riplinger, Gail:  Westcott & Hort's New Age Bibles

Scott Lively,
"Pink Swastika", Homosexuality and the Nazi Party

Scott Lively - Google Search
Scott Lively - Google Videos



More:  Issues:  Lively, Scott:  "Pink Swastika", Homosexuality and the Nazi Party;
Issues:  Lynette Burrows, Psychologist warns on Pedophiles
Issues:  Homosexual Activism;
Issues:  Judicial Activism;
Issues:  Poofy Judges





















































www.   fact.on.ca
fathersforlife.org-AB
fathers4justice.ca news
canadacourtwatch.com
Million Dads March
MESA, Alberta
fathers.bc.ca
F4J.ca

Report An Injustice; Report News

Defend    Marriage.ca
His Side with Glenn Sacks
Equal Parenting How To's
Family Facts: Legislation
Family Facts: MP Info
bcrevolution.ca
fathers.ca
pcac


Male Survivors,  Sexual Assault
australianpaternityfraud.org
REAL Women of Canada
hiddenfromhistory.org
nojustice.info
antichildporn.org
PAFE

KRights Radio!

Canadian  EPC.com
australianpaternityfraud.org
CFAC: familyaction.org, BC
MPs' Postion on Marriage
How'd They Vote?
Email Your MP
Dads Now
ancpr.org








90% of Australians support equal custody after separation,  Fathers4Equality, AU
"A rebuttable presumption of equal parenting time is about children, and it's about time!"

Ash Patil, President, fathers4equality-australia
Equal Parenting Petition, AU

Equal Parenting Trek - 2014:  MP Maurice Vellacott Equal Shared Parenting Bill, C-560


MP Maurice Vellacott urges support for equal shared parenting bill, C-560

Please forward above petition link & document to all Equal Parenting friends, family, and all ask to set up appointment with your local Federal MP’s to offer to volunteer help their 2015 Fall campaign if they vote May 5th for bill C-560: http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=E&Mode=1&DocId=6375891

Maurice Vellacott, MP  Saskatoon-Wanuskewin

Bill C-560 Divorce Law reform Equal Parenting

PETITION:  Bill C-560 Divorce Law reform Equal Parenting on CCS ADVOCACY CANADA

"I am writing to you to make a case for a private member’s bill, C-560 the Bill was tabled December 6th."

Social science research shows that having both parents in the lives of children reduces a wide array of children’s educational, health and social disadvantages by about half. We suggest that these reforms could reduce Canada’s poverty and social costs by more than that percentage, as well as alleviating large amounts of human suffering.

Keeping both parents in the lives of their children (equal parenting) is the right thing to do, morally and economically.

The current family law system creates large amounts of family poverty, homelessness, jailing of parents simply for being poor and bitterness against the legal system. Frankly, many parents believe from their experience that family law, the legal profession and judges are self-serving, biased and corrupt.

More: Equal Parenting Trek - 2014:  MP Maurice Vellacott Equal Shared Parenting Bill, C-560 ;
Issues: Vellacott, Maurice, MP:  Equal Parenting Advocate, Bill C-422
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;;

Today in Parliamentary debate, Vellacott urges support for equal shared parenting bill, C-560

For Immediate Release March 25, 2014

OTTAWA – MP Maurice Vellacott leads off debate this evening on his Private Member’s Bill. C-560 amends the Divorce Act to make equal shared parenting a rebuttable presumption in cases of marital breakup involving children, except in cases of proven abuse or neglect.

 Aside from proven abuse or neglect, over three quarters of Canadians want equal shared parenting to be the presumption in our courts when marriages unfortunately break down.

 Polling has shown that 78% of Canadians support equal shared parenting, with a high of 86% support in Quebec. More women than men support equal shared parenting, at 78%. Among supporters of major political parties, about 78% of Conservatives support equal shared parenting, 76% of the NDP and 80% of Liberals.

 “This bill is very important in bringing Canadian legislation in line with what the best research says about the best interests of children,” said Vellacott. Over the past 15 years, the best research has continued to demonstrate far superior outcomes for children, with limited exceptions, when both parents – mom and dad – are actively involved in their children's lives, even if the parents divorce or separate.

 Reportedly, 50% of family violence occurs AFTER separation. Studies show conflict goes down with equal shared parenting. An equal shared parenting framework has been shown to provide a greater incentive to couples to use mediation in place of adversarial judicial options.

 Equal shared parenting has come to be viewed as a range of generally 35-50% residential parenting by each parent. It does not impose a strict 50-50 residential arrangement on parents.

 Bill C-560 also reflects the spirit of recommendations made over 14 years ago in a Joint House-Senate committee report presented to Parliament entitled “For the Sake of the Children.”

 “Equal shared parenting is an important component of a modern definition of the best interests of the child, a definition rooted in the best social science research available today,” said Vellacott. “I urge all Parties and Members to vote in support of this bill at 2nd Reading, bringing it before the Justice Committee for further diligent study. We cannot do less for Canada’s children.”

More: Equal Parenting Trek - 2014:  MP Maurice Vellacott Equal Shared Parenting Bill, C-560 ;
Issues: Vellacott, Maurice, MP:  Equal Parenting Advocate, Bill C-422
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;;

Sponsor

Maurice Vellacott  Conservative

Introduced as a private member’s bill. (These don’t often become law.)

Status

Defeated, as of May 28, 2014

Subscribe to a feed of speeches and votes in the House related to Bill C-560.

Summary

This is from the published bill. The Library of Parliament often publishes better independent summaries.

This enactment amends the Divorce Act to replace the concept of “custody orders” with that of “parenting orders”. It instructs judges, when making a parenting order, to apply the principle of equal parenting unless it is established that the best interests of the child would be substantially enhanced by allocating parental responsibility other than equally.

Elsewhere

All sorts of information on this bill is available at LEGISinfo, provided by the Library of Parliament. You can also read the full text of the bill.

Votes

  • May 28, 2014 Failed That the Bill be now read a second time and referred to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.
Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

May 27th, 2014 / 6:30 p.m.
See context

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, I thank the House for the opportunity to speak to Bill C-560, an act to amend the Divorce Act in relation to equal parenting and to make consequential amendments to other acts.

My heart goes out to all those struggling through the breakup of a marriage, divorce, court cases for custody, and wanting more time with their children.

While I appreciate the terrible anguish of parents who want to spend more time with their children and the mover of the bill's intent—namely, to have two caring, engaged, and loving parents in children's lives—I believe the bill is fundamentally flawed in putting parental rights before the rights of children, the most precious and vulnerable among us.

The former Conservative minister of justice and Attorney General of Canada, in speaking to the Canadian Bar Association's annual conference in 2009 about equal parenting and the predecessor to this legislation, namely Bill C-422, stated that the best interests of the child are always paramount, and should be.

Bill C-560 was introduced by the member of Parliament for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin on December 12, 2013. This is not the first time the hon. member has introduced a bill regarding this matter.

The most significant changes that the bill would bring to the Divorce Act include the following: removing the current definition of custody from the Divorce Act and replacing it with parenting, defined as “the act of assuming the role of a parent to a child, including custody and all of the rights and responsibilities commonly and historically associated with the role of a parent”; creating a presumption that “allocating parenting time equally between the spouses is in the best interests of a child” and that “equal parental responsibility is in the best interests of a child”; adding factors that courts must consider in making custody orders; and altering the law on parental mobility.

The bill would represent a disservice both to children and to families by taking the focus away from children in favour of parental rights, detracting from the individual justice required by the Divorce Act, and promoting further and more fractious litigation.

The Divorce Act currently establishes that the best interests of the child are the paramount consideration in child custody cases. In other words, the rights of the parent are subordinate to the interests of the child. Bill C-560 seeks to weaken this in favour of the rights of the parents.

The best-interests-of-the-child test has been a fundamental part of most legislation relating to children for many years. It is used in federal legislation under the following acts: the Citizenship Act, the Divorce Act, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, and the Youth Criminal Justice Act. It is also used in some provincial legislation dealing with matters such as adoption legislation; child protection legislation; and custody, access, and child support for unmarried couples.

Equal parenting as defined in the bill appears to have received support from some observers, particularly certain parents' groups, but so far it has not received much support from the legal community.

The Canadian Bar Association, or CBA, represents some 37,000 lawyers, judges, notaries, law teachers, and law students from across Canada. The CBA's mandate includes improvement in the law and the administration of justice. The CBA family law section includes family lawyers from every part of the country. They are collaborative arbitrators, litigators, mediators, parenting coordinators, and practitioners. Their clients include children, fathers, mothers, grandparents, step-parents, surrogates, and so on.

The CBA family section believes that any discussion of “parental rights” is misguided when resolving arrangements for children and that the sole focus must be what is best for children. The CBA therefore opposes Bill C-560, as it would shift the way custody is determined under the Divorce Act to parents' rights and away from what is in the best interests of children.

Lawyers assist all family members during what are often impossibly difficult times in restructuring their responsibilities and arrangements following separation and divorce. As a result, the CBA family section sees the issue from all sides. The CBA firmly believes that the only perspective to foster outcomes that are best for children is to require that the courts and parents focus solely on the children's interests in making decisions.

While the bill refers to equal parenting, it would not actually advance equality. Rather, it would change the primary focus in custody and access matters from what is best for children to equal parental rights.

“Parenting is not about adults claiming rights”, says Patricia Hebert of Edmonton, vice-chair of CBA's national family law section. “It is about the desire and ability to put children's interests first”.

She continues:

"The bill is based on the faulty assumption that equal parenting time will work for all families, regardless of abilities, circumstances, needs, history, challenges or attitudes of all those involved. In reality, the proposed change is clearly about promoting parents' views of equality at the expense of the interests of children, who are affected by their parents' separation."

The CBA agrees that shared parenting is a good outcome for many families. Where equal time and responsibility can be shown to be in the best interests of children, judges can and do make that order under the current law, but the CBA understands that one size does not fit all.

The CBA objects to the proposed legislation, which says equal parenting time and responsibility must be ordered in every case. This would require judges to justify any other outcome by ruling that the best interests of the child would be “substantially enhanced” by a non-equal regime. This clearly makes children's interests a very low priority, which is contradictory to the stated goals of Canadian family laws as well as Canada's obligations under the Hague convention on the rights of the child.

Finally, I would like to bring forth questions asked by my friend and colleague, the hon. member for Charlottetown, of the current Minister of Justice regarding Bill C-560 at the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights. My colleague asked:

A private member's bill is coming before the House, C-560, dealing with the Divorce Act. Back in 2009, your predecessor...indicated that the best interests of the child are always paramount. Given that this question is about to come before the House, what are your views on that, sir?

The Minister of Justice answered:

I can tell you, having practised some family law—as you have in Prince Edward Island—that the long-held legal maxim and the jurisprudence definitely supports that the best interests of the child will remain the primary concern. I see no change in that regard.

In closing, children must always be our primary concern. This legislation seeks to weaken that. This is not acceptable to the Liberal Party of Canada. This is not acceptable to the Canadian Bar Association. This is not acceptable to the present Minister of Justice or to the former Minister of Justice. This is why we will oppose the bill.

Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

May 27th, 2014 / 6:40 p.m.
See context

Mississauga—Erindale
Ontario

Conservative

Bob Dechert Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to have the opportunity today to speak on Bill C-560, an act to amend the Divorce Act with regard to equal parenting and to make consequential amendments to other acts.

The preamble to the bill states a number of objectives, including that of encouraging divorcing parents to take more responsibility for their disputes with less reliance on the adversarial processes.

I would like to focus my remarks on the stated objective of the bill in order to demonstrate how this concept is consistent with our government's current approach to divorce and matrimonial settlements.

We all know that divorce is often a messy and drawn-out process in which both sides have deeply rooted resentments toward one another.

Unfortunately, at times divorce is unavoidable and happens quite frequently in our society. However, rather than turning to the courts and other adversarial processes to find a neat and tidy solution to an otherwise complex and messy situation, our government has taken the approach of encouraging and supporting both sides to find a mutually agreed upon resolution themselves.

In the context of separation and divorce, when parents are able to work together and put their children's needs and interests first, they provide a supportive environment for their children during an often challenging time. This is an important step in allowing these kids to achieve their full potential.

Working together and minimizing conflict are important and necessary goals for the approximately 70,000 married couples who divorce in Canada each year.

While the government cannot support Bill C-560, as it moves away from a strong focus on the best interests of the child, I thought it would be helpful to outline for my colleagues some of the ways in which this government is already promoting the goal of encouraging parents to take more responsibility for the resolution of their disputes.

First, this government contributes funding to a wide range of family justice services that have been shown to support co-operation and minimize conflict.

Second, this government has developed various publications to help families deal with divorce, including a booklet for children to help them understand and cope with their parents' divorce as well as a parenting guide and tools that encourage parents to co-operate with each other and that help them prepare a parenting plan that would best suit the needs of their children.

The phrase “family justice services” refers to all programs and services that meaningfully contribute to the resolution of family law issues. Those to which this government contributes funding include information and resource centres, alternative dispute resolution services, parent and child education programs, and services directed at high-conflict situations.

Here is a brief description of each type.

Information and resource centres offer free information on family law and court procedures. As a general rule, these centres do not give legal advice. However, they give out necessary information and documents, such as court forms, and provide some guidance on the steps in legal proceedings. They also refer families to legal and community resources to help meet their needs.

An alternative dispute resolution process that is widely funded by governments is mediation. A mediator is a neutral third party who helps the parents discuss issues on which they disagree. The mediator does not take sides, but may make suggestions to help the parents communicate better and reach an agreement. The mediator does not replace a lawyer.

Parent education and information programs are usually run by lawyers and social workers. They often work together to help parents understand and cope with the emotional effects of separation and divorce on themselves and their children, deal with some of the challenges of parenting after separation, and learn techniques for communicating better with each other, resolving disputes, and co-parenting. Some of these programs are also available on government websites and in other formats. This helps to make them more accessible to those living in remote areas.

Some provinces and territories have developed special education and counselling programs for children that help them cope emotionally with the breakdown of their family and understand that their parents' divorce is not their fault.

Finally, there are family justice services designed to help in situations in which there are concerns about the safety of children and the other parent. As a key example, service providers, generally with social work experience, supervise visits between a parent and a child, or they may supervise the transfer of a child from one parent to another when there is a high degree of conflict between the parents.

I would like to emphasize that these programs and services are developed and administered by the provinces and territories. As many members are aware, the federal, provincial, and territorial governments share constitutional responsibility for family law, and the administration of justice is a provincial/territorial responsibility. The federal government is responsible for divorce, including custody and support when dealt with as part of the divorce. In all other situations, the provincial and territorial governments are responsible for custody and support.

Since 1985, the federal government has provided funds to provinces and territories to develop and improve services and programs that assist separating and divorcing families. The current funding program entitled the “supporting families fund” has two objectives: one, to contribute to the continued improvement to access to the family justice system; and two, to encourage greater parental compliance with family obligations, notably support and parenting arrangements.

To fulfill these objectives, the fund was recently renewed for three years, until 2017, to provide $15.5 million per year to the provinces and territories for the delivery of family justice services to help parents resolve their issues and comply with their family obligations for the benefit of their children. The fund also provides $500,000 per year to non-governmental organizations to develop targeted family justice information and training resources. By helping to reduce conflict and increase co-operation between parents, these family justice services promote better outcomes for children.

The second way in which this government supports the goals of co-operation and minimizing conflict is to make available on the government website information and other tools that can help children cope with divorce and help parents develop parenting arrangements that respond to the needs of their children.

The government recognizes that children need information as well as adults and has developed What happens next?, a booklet for children between the ages of nine and twelve whose parents are separating or divorcing. It gives them basic explanations of key legal terms and also discusses the emotions they may be feeling. The children's calendar helps children keep track of their schedule and important dates as they move between houses.

The guide entitled Making plans gives parents information about issues they need to address when developing parenting arrangements, including a schedule for the time children will be under the care of each parent. It also suggests processes parents can use to agree on a plan, such as mediation, negotiation, and collaborative law, and provides tips on how to include their child's perspective. This guide promotes agreement between parents by emphasizing the importance of communicating, reducing conflict, and building a co-parenting relationship that focuses on the best interests of the child.

The parenting plan tool is a companion to Making plans. It is a practical guide with sample clauses to help parents develop a written parenting plan setting out their parenting arrangement.

Finally, the federal government worked with our colleagues in the provinces and territories to develop a parenting plan checklist to help parents identify issues to consider when developing a parenting plan.

The need for public legal education and information materials such as these, as well as for family justice services, is widely recognized. Recently, the Action Committee on Access to Justice in Civil and Family Matters, a group broadly representative of leaders across Canada in the field of civil and family justice, and chaired by Supreme Court of Canada Justice Thomas Cromwell, emphasized the value of front-end services, such as those family justice services funded by this government, especially those that include “live” help. It noted that:

It is widely recognized that the provision of services early in a dispute helps to minimize both the cost and duration of the dispute and thus to mitigate the possibility of protracted conflict and the corresponding harm to family relationships.

The committee was equally adamant that:

The more that families can effectively take responsibility for the resolution of their own disputes, the better.... This push towards family autonomy...[must be] balanced by a corresponding public obligation to ensure that these families are given appropriate help in doing so.

I want to reassure the House that we take that public obligation seriously. That is why I have taken the time to explain today some of the ways in which we are contributing to high-quality front-end services that support the many Canadian families experiencing family breakdown.

I have highlighted the supporting families fund and the development of public legal education and information materials. Further, the government will review the custody and access provisions of the Divorce Act and, in so doing, will consider how it can further encourage parents to rely less on adversarial processes and focus on the needs of their children.

 
Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

May 27th, 2014 / 7 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Leon Benoit Vegreville—Wainwright, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to speak this evening on Bill C-560, although I must admit it is not a fun topic to deal with. Certainly, there have been all too many, usually young fathers, come to me in states of depression and desperation because they had been denied access or given very limited access to their child because of a divorce and a bad decision made by the courts and our justice system.

Bill C-560 would amend the Divorce Act to direct the courts to make equal shared parenting the presumptive arrangement for children following the divorce of their parents, except in proven cases of abuse or neglect. The key point of this legislation is that when parents divorce each other, they do not divorce their children. These amendments would keep both parents in the lives of more children in those cases where marriages break down. Bill C-560 would require parents to co-operate in establishing equal shared parenting unless they can make a credible compelling case that this would not be in the best interest of the child.

I have heard tonight many, mostly lawyers but not all, who have said that they favour a system where decisions are made based in the best interest of a child. Well, the simple truth is that a child having both parents is what is in the best interest of a child in most cases.

Far too often, cases are being decided by our courts that do not make decisions that are in the best interest of the child. I believe that the law is an ass, so to speak, in far too many cases.

I have seen the fallout of that, and it is not fun. There is nothing that wrenches at one's gut and strikes at the heart in a negative way more so than a parent, again, usually a young father, who is being denied access to his child for no good reason. It is not because they are any threat to the child, but it is because of a bad court decision. I believe that this legislation would make the outcome positive in far more cases.

Just over half of the number of divorcing couples today make their own arrangements for seeing their children without needing court intervention. For those who do need to use family courts, an equal shared parenting presumption would eliminate a key incentive for acrimonious conflict.

It is this conflict that breaks the heart, and breaks the will in many cases, and also makes lawyers rich. Of course, I would not be surprised if many lawyers did not support this legislation. I am not suggesting that all lawyers would oppose this just because they would be denied legal fees, I am not that crass, but certainly I believe that kind of thinking does come into things far too often.

Bill C-560 would foster settlements and reduce litigation due to the requirement that a parent seeking primary parent status must establish the best interest of the children, which means the focus under Bill C-560 is substantially enhanced by the disproportionate parenting time.

Studies have consistently shown that it is the very existence of custody litigation itself that causes the most harm to children. Bill C-560 focuses on the right of the child to know and to love two primary parents in accordance with the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

A marked drop in the use of litigation has been seen in Australia following recent equal parenting reforms in that country. This outcome was expected by advocates of equal parenting and runs counter to the scaremongering from opponents who falsely claim that equal shared parenting would produce great conflict among divorced parents and their children. That is simply not what has happened.

Another myth surrounding this bill is that it would impose a cookie-cutter, once-size-fits-all outcome on all divorcing families.

It would not do that. In fact, the opposite is true. The status quo is the cookie-cutter approach, with more than 75% of family court custody decisions being in favour of sole custody for the mother. That is a cookie-cutter approach. It is not a healthy one and it is not one that should be continued in this country.

We clearly see the de facto presumption in operation in today's family courts. Amending the Divorce Act to include a presumption of equal shared parenting, therefore, would not be a radical change to the current law. More importantly, it would be a change that replaces a parental rights framework for one that prioritizes the best interest of the child or children.

The current adversarial litigation system of settling child-related disputes is focused on parental rights. Parents are the ones represented by counsel and are the parties in the dispute. Each parent asserts that they are the better parent and are better able to meet the child's needs, and each parent defends against unfair or mistaken attacks on their parenting from the other parent. As a result, the courts are clogged with bitter, divisive, and financially devastating custody litigation between parents fighting over children like they are property.

I would also like to clarify that Bill C-560 would not impose the one-size-fits-all requirement of an exact 50-50 residential arrangement for the children of divorced parents at both parents' new homes. It would establish equal shared parenting as a starting point for parents and courts to use as they work toward a solution, typically in the range of 35% to 50% in residential access of the child to each parent, according to the unique circumstances of each family.

The international organization Leading Women for Shared Parenting reports that:

Research also proves that, although children want a relationship with both their parents regardless of marital status, healthy bonding with a...parent is impossible without a substantial amount of time spent in that parent’s physical presence.

That means very close to equal, again, in a 35% to 50% range for each parent.

Bill C-560 aims to implement selected best practices from other jurisdictions to encourage parents to make consensual decisions, to reduce conflict and costly legal battles, and to ensure that both parents have the option of equal time with their children, unless they are proven unfit. Equal time as a starting point in the divorce process means that both parents need not fear the arbitrary loss of their children.

I have got so much more that I want to say, but I see that my time is almost up. I will close by saying that we know, from the best social science research, a body of research that is growing every day, that ordinary children thrive most and produce the best outcomes when raised by both of their biological parents. This is what this bill is about. It could play a very important role indeed in helping to ensure that this is what happens, that the best rights of the child are considered and that it means, in most cases, near equal access to each of their parents. It is a result that is clearly, as I have said before, in the best interest of the child.

Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

May 27th, 2014 / 7:05 p.m.
See context

NDP

Anne-Marie Day Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles, QC

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak to a subject I feel strongly about, children’s rights. The bill currently being considered by the House poses a serious risk to the rights of Canadian children, which is why I would like to voice my opposition the current iteration of Bill C-560.

Bill C-560, as introduced by my colleague, the member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, amends the Divorce Act by replacing the concept of custody orders with that of parenting orders. The legislation instructs judges, when making a parenting order, to apply the principle of equal parenting unless it is established that the best interests of the child would be substantially enhanced by allocating parental responsibility other than equally.

This change to the legislation, which may, at first glance, appear innocuous, has significant consequences for thousands of Canadian families that have to navigate the already difficult experience of divorce.

The main effect of the bill is that it gives priority to the best interests of parents, rather than of the child, when a parenting order is issued. However, in my opinion, it is absolutely essential that the criteria of the best interests of the child remain the primary consideration in decisions made by judges regarding custody.

In this regard, I stand squarely behind the opinion issued by the Quebec Bar Association, which publicly announced its opposition to Bill C-560. Allow me to read a couple of excerpts from the letter that the Bar Association sent to the member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin. I completely agree with the opinion of Bar Association and, at the same time, remain hopeful that the member will bear in mind the expert opinion and jurisprudence on the issue.

In his letter, the president of the Quebec Bar Association expressed the following opinion:

The bill being studied was preceded by two other bills, introduced in 2009 and 2002, that also included the concepts of “parenting orders” and “parental responsibility”. The 2002 bill was the result of a Canada-wide reflection that lasted more than a decade.

In 2001, at the invitation of the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Family Law Committee, the Barreau du Québec participated in this reflection and attended a conference on the subject.

A brief was prepared. The Canadian government's final report on custody and access and child support payments, entitled “Putting Children's Interest First”, along with Bill C-22, were the culmination of that extensive consultation. One of the most important conclusions that came out of the consultation concerned the rejection of all assumptions about child custody and the importance of maintaining the flexible criterion of the interest of the child along with the “friendly parent” and “maximum contact” principles. This conclusion was endorsed by the vast majority of those who participated in the consultation, which targeted numerous social and legal groups across Canada.

Bill C-560 proposes amendments that are contrary to the conclusions that came out of that 2001 consultation, particularly in relation to child custody. One of the legislator's objectives is to have the Divorce Act include, under the expression “equal parenting responsibility”, a presumption of joint parental authority and a presumption of shared custody.

Why does the bill disregard a decade of consultation? Why does it fail to take into account the opinion of experts?

The difficult experience of divorce and the issue of custody already place huge pressure on families and especially on children. However, the current bill would force judges to put the interests of the child second, behind the right of parents to equal custody.

This shift has serious consequences and may have an adverse effect on the healthy development of the child. Judges already consider the option of equal shared custody as the optimal solution for a divorced couple with a child, if indeed this option is in the best interests of the child.

What, therefore, is the point of this bill when the legislative tools at our disposal already provide us with the option of equal shared custody?

Canadian judges are competent and know what to do. In the face of ongoing family conflict, it is quite simply not in the interests of the child to be in a situation where the parents share equal custody. Moreover, where in this bill is the opinion of the child taken into account? Does it come second to the custody rights of parents?

Of course, the NDP will always stand up for gender equality, and the rights of fathers are just as important as the rights of mothers.

However, this bill misses the mark, since it in no way moves us in the direction of equality. Rather, it diminishes the rights of the child, and it is high time that the debate refocused on the real issue at hand: the best interests of the child.

It is also important to avoid relinquishing any legislative space to parents who, in the throes of divorce, often lack perspective and judgment. This vulnerability may cause one parent to use custody of the child to attack the other parent. Sometimes parents’ claims come from a selfish place rather than from a place of genuine concern for the best interests of the child. This must be avoided at all costs.

I will say it again: I share the opinion of the Barreau du Québec, which is that the best interests of the child must take precedence over any other consideration when it comes to custody rights.

I would also like to inform my colleagues that the opinion of the national family law section of the Canadian Bar Association is that Bill C-560 puts the rights of parents before the best interests of the child. The association further argues that:

Parenting is not about adults claiming rights…It is about the desire and ability to put children’s interests first.

The association goes on to say:

The bill is based on the faulty assumption that equal parenting time will work for all families, regardless of abilities, circumstances, needs, history, challenges or attitudes of all those involved...

In reality, the proposed change is clearly about promoting parents’ views of equality at the expense of the interests of children, who are affected by their parents’ separation.

I hope that my colleagues will also consider this expertise when it comes time to vote.

In closing, I would like to express my concern about two other aspects of the bill. First, this bill allows custody orders that have already been made by a judge to be changed. From what I understand, an application for judicial review can be submitted for any sole-custody orders, and the courts will now have to apply the presumption of shared custody. This gives a certain amount of retroactive power to change decisions that were already made in an appropriate manner in light of the facts presented to the judge.

Finally, there also seems to be a desire to rank a number of criteria that the judge must consider when rendering a decision. How can the child's opinion and family violence be ranked lower than maximum parental contact? That does not make any sense, and it represents a major setback in terms of child and family law when compared to the laws in most other western countries.

I would like to close by saying that when parents are more concerned about their children than themselves, they are more likely to forget their differences and their own interests and find a solution that works well for their family. The existing laws already offer the possibility of equal shared custody, if that solution is in the best interest of the child.

Rather than restricting the rights of children, I urge all my colleagues to think about more constructive solutions that will enable us to develop tools and provide families with the resources they need to deal with the painful transition of divorce. Parents who are better equipped will be able to minimize the negative effects of divorce on their children's development and well-being.

Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

May 27th, 2014 / 7:15 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Jim Hillyer Lethbridge, AB

Mr. Speaker, I am speaking in support of Bill C-560, which is the bill to amend the Divorce Act to make equal shared parenting arrangements for children following the divorce of their parents, except in proven cases of abuse or neglect.

I must admit that when this bill was first tabled and started to get some public attention and I started to pay attention to it, I was a bit surprised to see how controversial it became. I expected that most people would be in favour of it. That is part of the reason we have debate. It is because sometimes assumptions are challenged. I will say that the arguments against the bill seem as sincere as the arguments in favour of it.

I do not want to say anything about the intent of people who disagree with me on this bill. However, I will say that at home, when I have the occasional constituent come to talk to me about divorce law and family law problems, without exception, the problems have been fathers feeling that they are not getting fair representation through the courts and that the whole system is stacked against fathers having access to their children.

I want to make very clear that my support for this bill is not about preserving fathers' rights. It is not about mothers' rights. It is about the children's rights. It is not just about their rights but about the good of the children. When we talk about the good of the children, sometimes I wonder why we always say, “it is for the good of the children”. Why do children get this emphasis that other human beings do not get? It is not that children are more important. It is that children have not done anything to cause the grief they receive because of the mistakes adults make. Also, children just happen to be the people who will turn into adults who run the world, and if we have the children's best interests at heart and in mind, and we actually look after the children's best interests, by extension, we cannot fail in looking after the best interests of society as a whole.

Beyond children in and of themselves, when we have the best interests of families at heart and the best interests of families in our minds, we look after the interests of society, because family is the fundamental unit of society. When we do harm to the family, we cannot avoid doing harm to society. Decisions we make in this place, or any other place where we make decisions for all of society, must focus on children, and not just on children as individuals but on children as parts of families.

We live in a time when most men and boys are essentially fatherless. If men and boys are fatherless, so are the daughters. We live in a time when we lament violence against women, when we lament irresponsibility. Without fathers, we cannot teach our boys to treat women properly, and it is more difficult for daughters without their fathers to have a sense of who they are as well. Whatever the circumstances, when children do not have a father in the home, they find themselves on their own to figure out life, and they find out that it is a lonely place to be. They will often be ruled by their fears and anger and boredom, when lots of times all they seek is the affection of a father. There are many addictions that come from this fatherless place within them, a fundamental uncertainty in the core of their being.

In our art, our literature, our poems, our movies, our novels, there are so many written about children seeking out their parents, and in particular, their fathers. Lots of real life stories are about adopted children who at a certain age have an inner angst in their soul to find out who their parents are. They love their adopted parents and see them as their parents, but there is something inside of our souls that seeks to be connected with our fathers and our mothers.

The bill is in response to the fact that in today's current divorce law, it is fathers who are usually left out of the children's lives, and by extension, the children are left out of the fathers' lives.

What does fatherhood do? What does it teach people in general, kids in general? It is the new-found position as a requirement of the good life. It shows people how to fulfill duty. It binds us to other people in general. It binds us for real to a woman or to another adult. It is the only thing that still can do this.

Nowadays, marriage is instantly reversible and a negotiable contract, but fatherhood is not. Through this law, we will bring fathers closer to the hearts of the children and the children to the fathers.

The bill may not be perfect yet, but it is on the right track. We need to bring it to committee so we can examine it more closely. The concerns people have brought up about the bill can be addressed at committee. We cannot let it die at this point. We need to bring it to the next level. I encourage everyone in the House to vote in favour of the bill to bring it to committee.

 
Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

May 27th, 2014 / 7:25 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Maurice Vellacott Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, SK

Mr. Speaker, I have some concluding comments for this second reading stage of debate on Bill C-560. I look forward to this, and I look forward to speaking again, hopefully, if the bill gets to committee and passes at that stage, amended or intact, and then back to the House. However, it has been an interesting process.

Over the past several months, I have heard from Canadians from coast to coast, from every province, from la belle province all the way across to western Canada and British Columbia. Over the course of the past years, I have heard from thousands of people.

I will confess from the get-go that the bill is not from my creative imagination per se. Certainly, I have carried the banner over the years, but there are some significant groups in the country that are involved in this.

I want to credit and thank Lawyers for Shared Parenting, a very distinguished group of lawyers that works in collaborative law and sees that all of these different things we have tried in the past, such as mediation and various other things, really have not got to the heart of the problems that of the flawed family law system.

I also want to thank the National Parents Organization, Preserving the Bond Between Parents and Children.

I want to thank Leading Women for Shared Parenting for the very considerable job it has done, and the number of its distinguished women across our country and the world grows every day.

Most of all, I want to thank the Canadian Equal Parenting Council, a very broad umbrella group comprised of 35 to 40 groups across the country that all have their own individual chapters. There is a sizeable number of people represented within these groups.

As well, I want to thank the many researchers with whom I have had the privilege to be in touch. They have weighed in on this, provided input and so on. Certainly, they will be prepared to come to committee. They are from Canada and abroad. A large consensus paper was recently written by a bunch of these individuals who have the intellectual heft on the social science kind of research that is being done.

This is coming at us in an avalanche. We are now beginning to better understand what the best interests of children are, adding already to those different criteria and parameters in the courts across the provinces.

Particularly, children want to love and be loved by both parents. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child talks about that very necessary thing.

Long-time supporters of the New Democratic Party, Liberals, Conservatives, Bloc Québécois and the Green Party, from every region across the country, have been calling their elected representatives to stand up for the best interest of Canada's children in a divorce by voting in favour of Bill C-560.

I want to make the point that, resoundingly, across party lines, across the entire country, a number of polls over the last years show support at 80% and upwards, or just hovering at about 79%, in all provinces by all parties represented in the House and by both genders. In fact, it is about 80% in support from men and about 1% or 2% more for women.

Members may ask why women even more than men are supportive of this equal shared parenting bill or this concept. It is because those men and women may marry again or have another partner. The issue of children having access to them consumes them and creates different dynamics in those relationships as well.

In fact, the current adversarial litigation system of settling child-related disputes is focused on parental rights. It is about winning the boat, the car, the house and the battle over the children. The present system is focused on the rights of the parents, whereas this bill is focused on the rights of the children. It would actually foster settlements, reduce the litigation and so on in the best interest of children.

We have had the discussion about the myth of the fifty-fifty. It is actually in the 35% to 50% range. We have talked about how this is not a cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all solution. There are variations and arrangements that could be made. This is to drive it to the best interest of children so they have access to both mom and dad, aside from abuse or neglect.

I would encourage my colleagues to read some of the good material that has been sent to them. Read the bill itself, and not what the Canadian Bar Association is saying about the bill. Read the myths and fact document that has been circulated to members.

Please help me to get this to committee where it can be looked at for further amendments or adjustments, so we do the right thing in the best interests of children in the days ahead by way of passing the bill.

Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

March 25th, 2014 / 5:30 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Maurice Vellacott Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, SK

moved that Bill C-560, An Act to amend the Divorce Act (equal parenting) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to speak to this private member's bill, a very non-partisan one, whose time has come in this country for the sake of families and for the benefit of children.

Throughout my time as a member of Parliament, next year my 19th year, I have fought for legislation and public policy that recognizes and protects the role of the family as the foundational unit of society. That is pretty important, and we pay a price when we do not support it, and try to deal with some of the fallout that happens occasionally and try to mitigate that as well in respect to family.

With Bill C-560 I am continuing my commitment to stand up for the Canadian family by seeking an amendment to our Divorce Act. These amendments would keep both parents in the lives of more children in those cases where marriage breaks down.

The amendments in Bill C-560 would direct the courts in regard to divorce to make equal shared parenting, and I will talk later of the range being 35% to 50% roughly, but making it the presumptive arrangement in the best interests of the child, except in proven cases of abuse or neglect.

I introduced a similar bill, Bill C-422, in June 2009, but it was never debated due to an election call.

Previous to that, in 2008, I introduced Motion No. 483, expressing support for the principle of equal shared parenting. At that time, the Government of the Northwest Territories expressed its solidarity with that position by way of a motion that it passed in its legislature.

Seventeen long years ago, in 1997, just prior to my having stepped onto the federal scene here, a joint House-Senate committee presented to Parliament a report entitled “For the Sake of the Children”. That report urged Parliament to amend the Divorce Act to make equal shared parenting the normative determination by courts dealing with situations of divorce involving children. The non-partisan recommendation from that joint House-Senate report was based on some pretty compelling research. Members can read that extensive testimony. It was made available to all committee members of the different parties.

Bill C-560 is a modest attempt to address some of the concerns and recommendations made in that report and, in particular, the rebuttable presumption, which takes children out of the equation as pawns in the battle for gain by adversarial parents. Some marriage breakdowns are more adversarial than others, but removing children from that equation would be good. Parents could fight over the house, the boat, the land, and whatever other kinds of assets of that marriage, but not the children. We will set some guidelines. We will have some restrictions. It will not be about the children.

Bill C-560 would require parents to co-operate toward equal shared parenting unless they can make a credible compelling case that this would not be in the best interests of their children.

In this respect, Bill C-560 is catching up to the best social science research, which demonstrates the importance of a child's continued access to both parents, a father and a mother, for the best personal and social outcomes.

There are exceptions to this ordinary reality, which is why the presumption is rebuttable, and lawyers in the House would understand what that means, and why there are exceptions for proven neglect and abuse. This is not just allegations of abuse or allegations of this, that, or the other, but evidentiary proven neglect and abuse.

Bill C-560 would also replace the language of custody and access with the language of parents and it uses terms such as “parenting order” and “equal parenting”.

Recommendation 5 from the “For the Sake of the Children” report reads as follows:

This Committee recommends that the terms “custody and access” no longer be used in the Divorce Act and instead that the meaning of both terms be incorporated and received in the new term “shared parenting”, which shall be taken to include all the meanings, rights, obligations, and common-law and statutory interpretations embodied previously in the terms “custody and access”.

The international organization Leading Women for Shared Parenting reports that:

Research also proves that, although children want a relationship with both their parents regardless of marital status, healthy bonding with a non-residential parent is impossible without a substantial amount of time spent in that parent’s physical presence.

That means very close to equal.

This legislation would not establish a firm figure for what that equal time would be. In jurisdictions across the world, from more socialist countries, like Sweden, Belgium, and so on, to more-to-the-right countries, such as I suppose Australia and some U.S. states, the range has been determined to be 35% to 50% of residential time with each parent. That is considered to be consistent with the notion as it is in the courts thus far.

Lawyers for Shared Parenting notes that Bill C-560 conforms with the principles of children's rights as advanced by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, which has been ratified by Canada. We are a signatory to that convention.

Article 9 of that UN Convention on the Rights of the Child argues for a child's prior right of access to both parents, thereby establishing a presumption for equal shared parenting in cases of divorce and separation.

Some people have objected to establishing a presumption in law regarding child custody cases, but the reality is that a presumption already exists, de facto, in the system. Upwards of 80% of custody cases are decided for sole custody. In effect, we do have a presumption in favour of sole custody as things presently stand.

What Bill C-560 would do is bring Canadian law into the 21st century by bringing it up to date with the best social science research, which indicates that a child's continued access to both parents following divorce or separation is in the typical child's best interest.

I think it is important to define what this best interest is. So often across the country we use the term, the amorphous, vague term, “the best interests of the child”. Members might have even heard it said in speeches today around the House. Certainly people will say that they do not know if they want this bill to come into place, because they are for the best interests of the child, which is amorphous, vague, and moldable as putty in the hands of lawmakers, social workers, and so on, and it does not really get at what that really is in a factual way.

We now know from social science research that the best interests of children is to have continued access to both parents following divorce or separation. That is in their best interests. That is the understanding from a social science basis of what that term actually should mean.

Others have represented this bill by claiming that it eliminates judicial discretion. I am not a lawyer and of course I would not want to offend my legal colleagues, so we are not eliminating all judicial discretion on these custodial matters. This bill would not eliminate all judicial discretion. There could still be a consideration of the situation of each family that comes before the courts.

What the bill does is tighten up the language surrounding judicial discretion, so that it becomes more difficult to use an antiquated interpretation of the best interests of the child as an excuse to rationalize a disproportionate percentage of sole custody decisions in today's family courts.

Suggestions that a rebuttable presumption is too onerous a standard are also brought forward by some people. That particular accusation is really inconsistent with multiple constitutional rulings in many countries, including Canada, where those rulings have made judgments that parents are presumed to act in the best interests of their children unless shown otherwise.

If one wants to say that rebuttable presumption is too onerous, then really one is almost arguing for the revocation of the basic legal doctrine that one is presumably innocent unless proven otherwise. That is a basic tenet of our judicial system, that one is innocent until proven otherwise, presumptively innocent. In respect to parents, it is same thing. Unless one can prove that a person is not a fit parent, we are not wise to make those kinds of assumptions.

Some have argued that a presumption of equal shared parenting would increase conflict in already acrimonious family situations. In fact it is the adversarial family court system that fuels such conflict and disenfranchisement of parents that is really the most harmful to children, pitting parents against each another in bitter court battles that frequently result in a winning and a losing parent. Do we really desire that kind of a system where we litigate over children? Do we desire a system where the courts remove fit parents from their own children's lives?

The negative impact of this current system on children, mostly and foremost, as well as on their parents and extended family is really quite unconscionable and immoral.

Bill C-560 should reduce conflict because it takes children out of the equation as objects of possession to be fought over by parents. With a presumption of equal shared parenting, access to the children cannot continue to be a part of divorce negotiations and treated like a portion of the winnings or losses of divorce agreements.

Parents would know that, barring cases of proven abuse or neglect, the courts would enforce an equitable access arrangement between both parents. Parents would be free to surrender some access, if that works better for their personal circumstances and their children, but the presumption would create a disincentive for hostile parents to try to keep access to the children from the other parent.

For example, if a father were a long-haul trucker, he might say he has the presumption of equal shared parenting but, for him, it only works to have the kids about 30% of the time and the mother to have them 70% of the time. The mother might say that she is a physician with a busy and pressured life, and she can only handle the children 35% of the time at her location. In those cases, that kind of arrangement would be made. It would not impose upon people to say that access has to be 50%. It could be arranged, and it could be anywhere from 35% to 50%.

The presumption of equal parenting would also be expected to reduce divorce rates. This is proven to be the case. As far back as 1998, researchers postulated that. When people go into a situation without the presumption that they are going to get it all, sometimes they back away a bit and they begin to work at those marriage difficulties.

People like Margaret F. Brinig, Frank Buckley, and Dr. Sanford Braver and various publications, such as International Review of Law and Economics and American Law and Economics Review, have found that there is a pre-emptive and preventive factor in this whole concept of equal shared parenting.

I think colleagues in the House are well aware of the social costs surrounding deviant behaviour among youth, whether it is in terms of the justice system or the welfare system. An important way to reduce those costs and the logistical challenges related to policing, the courts, social welfare program delivery, social worker caseloads, and more is to strengthen the families in our communities, including children's access to both their father and their mother, even in cases of separation and divorce.

Children in sole custody settings are reported as having a notably higher likelihood—three times higher, in fact—of suffering from low self-esteem, insecurity, and rejection, being underachievers, including school dropout, substance abuse, depression, suicide, teen pregnancy, and even crime. It is kind of jarring, but I am just stating the facts here. Approximately 80% of criminals are from single parent homes.

I need to quickly qualify that my hat is off to the single parents I have known, and who we all know, from the House, our ridings, and elsewhere, who do a 24-7 job and who do a remarkable job. However, it is not an easy job. The reality is, and the statistics are, that 80% of individuals in trouble with the law are from single parent home situations.

In most cases of sole custody, it is granted maybe more typically to the mother and the father is shut out. Fatherlessness in particular has been isolated as a serious indicator for poor outcomes among children. We have Big Brothers Big Sisters and other substitutes for that very reason.

I can list a host of problems. There is anxiety, learning disabilities, truancy, runaways, drug abuse, teenage pregnancies, mental illness, and suicide. They are some of the things that can occur on a long list or litany, when fathers are removed from homes unnecessarily. Equal shared parenting is an important way to combat these risks among the growing segment of children who live in homes that have experienced divorce.

There is a lot of good research. I will just drop a few names at this point. There is Dr. Edward Kruk, a professor at the University of British Columbia. There is a new study by Richard A. Warshak at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. D.A. Smith and G.R. Jarjoura have an article on social structure and criminal victimization. We have a long list of many others who have done extensive research on the benefits of equal shared parenting. People can contact me later about them, and they are on my website for people to look at.

We have countries in Europe, including France, Sweden, the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, and Luxembourg, that have adopted shared parenting. A number of U.S. states have as well.

We find, as well, across our country, that about 80% of those who claim to be NDP supporters and 80% of Liberal supporters support this concept of equal shared parenting; also 80% of Conservative supporters. More women than men, above 80% again, support equal shared parenting. All across the country, the highest levels of support are in Quebec and the Atlantic provinces, where it is again above 80%.

I would close by thanking my colleague from the Liberal Party, Raymonde Folco, who was the seconder on my bill, Bill C-422. She is an avowed, staunch feminist, who stood with me as we launched that first bill.

The bill is one that all colleagues in the House, irrespective of gender or part of the country, would support for the benefit of children.

Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

March 25th, 2014 / 5:45 p.m.
See context

NDP

Françoise Boivin Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the member opposite for his praiseworthy dedication to this cause and his persistence.

However, I would like to ask him how the existing legislation prevents equal parenting, since everything he said over the past 15 minutes gave me the impression that if that were how the courts made decisions, there would be no need for Bill C-560.

I also wanted to mention that I am really concerned about clause 10 of his bill, the retroactivity clause. I would like him to comment on that because it means that cases that have already been ruled on could go back to court. That could result in considerable uncertainty around custody across Canada.

Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

March 25th, 2014 / 5:50 p.m.
See context

NDP

Françoise Boivin Gatineau, QC

Mr. Speaker, as I was saying to the hon. member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, I appreciate the work he has done and his persistence, because this is not the first incarnation of Bill C-560. It came up as Bill C-422 in the previous Parliament.

Clearly, it is a hot topic. I must say that, since my election in May 2011, it has probably been one of the bills on which I have received the most correspondence and heard the most opinions, all of them varied. I received even more for some other bills.

First of all, I would like to thank all those who have written to me, especially those in my riding with an interest in the matter. I think that everyone is interested in it. Everyone in the House shares the concern about providing our children with the best environment possible. There is no doubt about that. I have felt that from both sides, both from those who supported Bill C-560 and from those who expressed major reservations.

I have also had the privilege of listening to many groups on both sides. I had an absolutely fascinating conversation with Brian Ludmer, one of the people who worked on this bill, one of its architects, one might say, in terms of its terminology.

What fascinates me about the debate on Bill C-560 is that, for the most part, everyone is saying much the same thing. Views begin to diverge when it comes to the solution or to what has to be done. That is not so clear.

I have analyzed Bill C-560. I would never claim to be an expert in matrimonial law. That is why, before making any recommendations to the NDP caucus, I spent a lot of time talking with people with much more expertise than I have. I met with people from the Canadian Bar Association and the Barreau du Québec, among others.

Make no mistake, I have already heard the arguments of those who support Bill C-560. They will say that lawyers just want to protect their turf, but that is not so. I have also spoken with lawyers who have dealt with complex cases that were not always resolved the way they would have hoped. My impression is that those dramatic cases are the reason behind Bill C-560, and Bill C-422 before it. There are a number of them in Canada, including in Quebec. Sometimes, we wonder which legal planet we are living on.

That being said, just because some judges apply a law a certain way does not necessarily mean that we should shred up that law, throw it out and completely change the system. Whether the Conservative member introducing Bill C-560 likes it or not, this represents an immense change. It is not as easy as he would have us believe. What we do here, the thing that is at the heart of everything referred to as “child care” in Canada, is serving the best interests of the child. That is the basic principle. What this bill does is create a presumption.

When we create a presumption, even if it is refutable, in other words if we can counter or set aside this presumption by introducing evidence, this is still very different than starting with the basic premise, namely the best interests of the child.

In this bill, it is fascinating to see the text that speaks to presumption. I will read the exact text:

The presumptions referred to in subsection (4) [equal parenting] are rebutted if it is established that the best interests of the child would be substantially enhanced by allocating parenting time or parental responsibility other than equally.

Not only does this preclude the essential nature of the best interests of the child, but it demands a considerable interest. There is a major problem with that. Imposing this presumption is the major problem with this bill.

I asked my colleague a question about retroactivity. He could very well have introduced his bill without undoing everything that has previously been done. Not only is this situation tragic, but tons of cases could end up back in court, cases that people have learned to live with. Perhaps those were not good solutions at the time, but this is what could happen now. Retroactivity provisions in legislation are rather dangerous. The Conservative government was able to see it last week with the Whaling decision. That is a red flag for me.

The NDP caucus has often supported bills at second reading to be able to conduct an in-depth analysis in committee. The major amendment that needs to be made in this case is to withdraw the presumption of equal parenting. My colleague is right that major problems need to be addressed. However, we should not do this by way of a private member's bill; we should have a government bill instead. In so doing, we would be able to better regulate the right of judges to grant custody with a view to equal parenting. Everyone agrees with that principle. I come from Quebec, where civil law stipulates that both parents have parental authority. That is something we are still hoping to achieve.

Under the circumstances, it is not even possible to amend the bill. I will therefore not waste my time. I would rather ask the government why it does not consult with experts in the field in order to draft a piece of legislation that is true to what the member is trying to do. In fact, several reports have been signed in the House for Bill C-422. That would be done legally and without undermining the fundamental principle in family law with respect to custody and the best interests of the child.

The problem is that, once custody is granted to the mother, for example, it takes a lot of convincing to get a judge to change the custody terms. Things can change over the years. Sometimes, a person is not ready for joint custody when the child is one, two or three, but is ready when the child is five or seven years old. We should make equal parenting more flexible over the years.

It would have been much better to throw the baby, meaning the system, out with the bathwater, and say that the child's interest is no longer our concern. Although that is not what I heard my colleague say, because I will not put words in his mouth, that is what his bill says.

I am prepared to accept his speech as it stands, but I must deal with the terminology in the bill. It removes the principle of the interest of the child and creates a presumption of equal parenting and a heavier than necessary burden to make the interest of the child the priority again. That is a major problem that adds to the problem with retroactivity.

With all due respect for the drafters of this bill, it is fundamentally so different from what it should be that I would rather we focus our energy on agreeing that we need to make changes to the custody system in consideration of the best interests of the child and equal custody so that both parents have access to the child. That way, we would be doing a service to society. The bill currently has major problems that we cannot remedy or amend.

It is unfortunate, but this bill should not even proceed to second reading. However, we could sit down with the people who are having problems and who have had a difficult time and listen to what they have to say.

Sometimes judges have simply not caught up with the times and need a few gentle nudges to remind them that having two parents—a father and a mother—is important for the child.

Divorce Act
Private Members' Business

March 25th, 2014 / 6 p.m.
See context

Liberal

Sean Casey Charlottetown, PE

Mr. Speaker, may I begin by first congratulating the member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin for his long service in this place. We differ in philosophy. We differ in political stripe. In fact, we differ on this bill. However, for anyone who has served his constituents and Canadians for 19 years, that is indeed something to be commended. I know the member has indicated that he does not intend to re-offer in the upcoming election. We have several months before the next election, I think, but it is not too early to acknowledge the significant contribution of this parliamentarian.

The bill placed before the House in his name, Bill C-560, is an effort to change the standard applied by the courts when dealing with divorce cases. Specifically, the summary contained in the bill reads as follows:

This enactment amends the Divorce Act to replace the concept of “custody orders” with that of “parenting orders”. It instructs judges, when making a parenting order, to apply the principle of equal parenting unless it is established that the best interests of the child would be substantially enhanced by allocating parental responsibility other than equally.

This is not the first time that the member has introduced a bill on this matter. The most significant changes that the bill would bring to the Divorce Act are, first, the removal of the current definition of “custody” from the Divorce Act, replacing it with “parenting”. That is defined as “the act of assuming the role of a parent to a child, including custody and all of the rights and responsibilities commonly and historically associated with the role of a parent”. Second is the creation of a presumption that allocating parenting time equally between the spouses and equal parental responsibility are in the best interests of the child. Third is the addition of factors that courts must consider in making custody orders.

The current law mandates the application of the best interests of the child test. The best interests of the child test has been a fundamental part of most legislation relating to children for years. This doctrine is not unique to family law proceedings. It is also used in federal legislation under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, the Citizenship Act, and the Youth Criminal Justice Act. It is also used in some provincial legislation dealing with matters, such as custody, access, and child support for unmarried couples; child protection legislation, and by that I mean legislation dealing with the apprehension and supervision of children by child protective services; adoption legislation; and in some provinces, change of name legislation.

None of the federal acts defines best interests of the child, as was pointed out by the member. However, many provincial family law and child protection acts include extensive definitions of the concept. Some provincial acts even include different best interests of the child tests for different contexts. For example, the Ontario Child and Family Services Act defines the test differently for child protection than it does for adoption.

As it stands now, courts must apply the best interests of the child from the perspective of the child, not the parents, and they must consider the long-term interests of the child as well as the child's day-to-day needs.

Three primary considerations under the best interests of the child test that the courts often consider are preserving the status quo in the interests of maintaining some stability for the child, whether one parent acted as the primary caregiver during the relationship, and the importance of keeping siblings together when considering future housing arrangements.

The best interests of the child is a critical component of the Divorce Act, and it appears in sections relating to custody. Under the current act, the best interests of the child, as it relates to condition, means that needs and other circumstances of the child are the overriding factor that the courts may consider when making a custody order. Further, when making a custody order, courts must give effect to the principle that a child should have as much contact with each spouse as is consistent with the best interests of the child. For that purpose, it should take into consideration the willingness of the person for whom custody is sought to facilitate such contact.

We all know that divorce is often a painful experience for couples, particularly when children are involved. In an ideal world, parents would see past their differences and would apply what the courts currently apply, which is to say, the best interests of the child standard. However, since divorce is sometimes acrimonious, painful, and filled with emotion, the best interests of the child are sometimes lost or confused with the subjective interests of a parent, and often those competing interests are to the detriment of the child or children.

It is for that reason, in part, that a judge must have the ability to apply his discretion to ascertain the facts and eventually make a determination of what is in the best interests of the child. I fear that what the hon. member is proposing would seriously alter that standard and would remove the discretion of the judge to assess the case through the best interests of the child and not the father or mother.

I am not alone in my concern about this bill. The Canadian Bar Association has very serious concerns about this bill. This is what the CBA had to say about the bill when it was introduced in a previous Parliament as Bill C-422, now Bill C-560. I will quote the Canadian Bar Association, which stated:

As lawyers, we assist all family members in restructuring their responsibilities and arrangements following separation and divorce. As a result, the CBA Section sees this issue from all sides. We firmly believe that the only perspective to foster outcomes that are best for children is to require that the courts and parents focus solely on the children’s interests in making decisions.

Bill C-422 [now Bill C-560] does not accomplish what it proposes. It does not give parties tools to resolve differences, nor does it assist them in making plans to share decision-making and physical care of children to minimize conflict and maximize children’s benefits. It would move from considering the individual child to preferring parents’ rights. It would encourage contentious litigation in future cases of family breakdown, and equally important, would cause thousands of children to be re-exposed to litigation and conflict as many settled cases would be reopened.

Those are the words of Canadian Bar Association. They are not mine.

It further stated:

Under current law, the legal playing field is even; there is no gender bias in law requiring judges to consider “the best interests of the child” as paramount. Instead, the Bill proposes an overly simplistic idea of equality: rather than considering a fair result best for the children involved in the case at hand, children must be split right down the middle. The Bill does not advance equality for either fathers or mothers. Its proposals would come at the sacrifice of the appropriate focus, solely on what is best for children.

There is more in the way of opposition to this bill, and it comes from the member's own party. Senior ministers have come out against this effort. In 2009, speaking at the Canadian Bar Association's annual conference, the then minister of justice and attorney general, now defence minister, was asked his position on equal parenting and the bill we are now debating. He stated, “the best interests of the child are always paramount...and should be”.

The member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin will know that just two weeks ago, his colleague and friend, the current Minister of Justice, appeared at the justice committee to account for his supplementary estimates request. During the meeting, the minister was very willing to answer questions, and I felt he was reasonable and fair in some of his responses, including the response to a question about whether the government intends to invoke the notwithstanding clause of the charter on matters where it disagrees with the Supreme Court.

I posed a direct question to the minister about Bill C-560, which is before the House today. This is what I asked the minister at committee:

A private member's bill is coming before the House, C-560, dealing with the Divorce Act. Back in 2009, your predecessor, [the Minister of National Defence], indicated that the best interests of the child are always paramount. Given that this question is about to come before the House, what are your views on that, sir?

He answered:

This particular private member's bill will receive, I'm sure, the rigorous examination that all private members' bills receive. I am familiar with the one you're referencing. I can tell you, having practised some family law—as you have in Prince Edward Island—that the long-held legal maxim and the jurisprudence definitely supports that the best interests of the child will remain the primary concern. I see no change in that regard.

I asked a supplementary:

The bill proposes to weaken that in favour of parental rights. Do you realize that?

The minister's response was “Yes, I do realize that”.

The Divorce Act currently establishes the best interests of the child as the paramount consideration in custody cases. In other words, the rights of the parent are subordinate to the interests of the child.

This legislation seeks to weaken that. It is not acceptable to the Liberal Party of Canada. It is not acceptable to the Canadian Bar Association. It is not acceptable to the present Minister of Justice or to the former minister of justice. That is why we will oppose the bill.

March 25th, 2014 / 6:10 p.m.
See context

Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe
New Brunswick

Conservative

Robert Goguen Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House of Commons today to speak to Bill C-560, An Act to amend the Divorce Act (equal parenting) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

The provisions of the Divorce Act regarding custody and access have not changed since they came into effect in 1986. According to section 16 of the Divorce Act, when making an order respecting custody or access, the court must be guided by only one principle, the best interests of the child.

Provincial and territorial family laws are also guided by the principle of the best interests of the child. This principle is also recognized by many instruments of international law, such as the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The principle of the best interests of the child recognizes that each child is unique and that his or her best interests must be determined on a case-by-case basis. When applying the principle of the best interests of the child in cases of custody or the role of the parent, the courts take into account a number of factors. The main factors pertain to the child, such as age, stage of development, presence of special needs, and the wishes of the child, if any. There are also factors related to the role of the parents, such as the parenting abilities of each parent and how they plan to take care of the child. Finally, there are a number of other factors such as the child's relationships with brothers and sisters, grandparents or any other relative.

Subsection 16(10) of the Divorce Act also refers to the principles of maximum contact and co-operative parenting, which the courts must also take into account when considering all the pertinent factors in order to determine the best interests of the child.

These principles are as follows: the courts apply the principle whereby the child of the marriage must have as much contact with each spouse as is consistent with the best interests of the child; and for the purposes of applying the principle of maximum contact, the court shall take into consideration the willingness of the person requesting custody to facilitate such contact. This is known as the friendly parent rule.

Courts do not consider a person's past conduct unless the conduct is relevant to the ability of that person to act as a parent. When a custody order is issued, the court can amend it if the court is convinced that the child's situation has significantly changed since a judge issued the most recent order.

If the court determines that there has been a significant change, it issues an order that meets the best interests of the child. When it issues a variation, the court applies the principles of the best interests of the child, of maximum contact and of cooperative parenting. It also applies the rule on past conduct, if needed. Basically, the court has the discretionary power to establish any arrangement that it deems to be in the best interests of the child.

Bill C-560 would amend the provisions on custody and access in the Divorce Act. It would add an approach based on an equal sharing of the parental role and will replace the terms “custody” and “access” with “parenting orders”, “parental responsibility” and “parenting time”.

The bill would add two presumptions about the role of the parents. These are the presumption that parenting time should be shared equally between the spouses and the presumption that parental responsibility should be equal or joint. In Bill C-560, parental responsibility essentially comes down to the power to make decisions on behalf of the child.

The presumptions would not apply if it is established that the interests of the child would be better served by the unequal division of parenting time or parental responsibility. When the presumptions do not apply, the court would still give effect to the principle that a child of the marriage should have as much contact with each parent as is consistent with that child's best interests.

The bill proposes to add several criteria that the court would have to consider when determining the best interests of the child. It also proposes to add rules about changing the child's residence. It also contains provisions encouraging the spouses to settle their differences without going to court and to use other dispute resolution mechanisms such as mediation.

Family law is a very important area of law.

Canadians are much more likely to have problems related to family law than problems related to other aspects of the justice system.

As is the case for many areas of jurisdiction set out in our Constitution, responsibility for family law is shared by the federal government and the provinces and territories. The provinces and territories have authority to legislate on issues related to couples that are not married and separate, as well as married couples that separate but do not divorce. The provinces and territories are also primarily responsible for administering this justice. This means they are responsible for the operation of the courts and family justice services, such as education programs for children and mediation. The federal government has jurisdiction over divorce and any related matters, such as custody.

Given that this is a shared jurisdiction, both levels of government, that is the federal as well as the provincial and territorial, have been working together for some time to improve the legislation on family law and the family justice system. For instance, as part of the supporting families experiencing separation and divorce initiative, the federal government provided the provinces and territories with funding to support family justice services, especially innovative projects such as specialized services for families experiencing major conflicts and using mediation services from a distance.

During these many years of collaboration, the family law system has gone through many changes. For instance, authorities now focus more on appropriate mechanisms for dispute resolution. In order to minimize the negative impact of divorce on children and other family members, families need a system that will maintain good relationships as much as possible.

Collaborative family law, alternative dispute resolution and mediation are examples of different approaches that help parents come up with solutions themselves. Another example of the ever-changing system of family law has to do with the results of custody cases.

The Divorce Act itself has not changed, but the kinds of orders handed down have changed considerably since new provisions regarding custody and access came into effect in 1986.

In 1986, the majority of orders gave so-called “traditional” custody to mothers, and only 1% of orders resulted in joint legal custody.

The data coming out of certain Canadian courts between 2010 and 2012 paint a very different picture. The data are compiled according to who is living with the child. It is sometimes known as physical custody, which is similar to the concept of parenting time in Bill C-560. The data also show that legal custody of children refers to making important decisions about them. Legal custody is similar to the idea of parental responsibility found in the bill.

The proportion of orders made under the Divorce Act that require parents to make important decisions together has increased from 1% to 75% in recent years.

Statistics show considerable changes in physical custody or parenting time. In 1998, barely 5% of divorce orders set out a shared custody arrangement, under which the children had to spend at least 40% of their time with each parent. However, if we look at the numbers between 2010 and 2012, approximately 21% of cases involved shared custody. That is a significant increase.

Between 2010 and 2012, only 5% of the cases involved sole custody arrangements. That is a lot of numbers, but that is how family law has evolved.

In more than one-third of the orders made under the Divorce Act, judges order that children spend at least 40% of their time with the father. That is a significant, positive shift from what was happening in 1998.

Bill C-560 raises important issues, and I am looking forward to hearing the other members' thoughts on it.

 

March 25th, 2014 / 6:20 p.m.
See context

NDP

Pierre Jacob Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, over the past few decades, society has gone through some serious economic and social upheaval. We are seeing the emergence of new types of families. There is a growing number of single parent and blended families.

According to the most recent census of 2006, there were 1,267,000 families in Quebec. Of that number, one-third were single parent families. They now represent a little more than a quarter of all families. That is the highest percentage ever recorded. We must take this new reality into account.

That is why I am speaking to Bill C-560, which amends the Divorce Act to replace the concept of custody orders with that of parenting orders. This bill instructs judges to apply the principle of equal parenting when making a parenting order.

This is not the first time that this bill has come before the House. It is similar to Bill C-422 from the last Parliament, in 2010. As with its predecessor, I have some reservations about Bill C-560.

When it comes to divorce, we must focus the debate on the real issue and that is the best interests of the child. I fear that is not the case with Bill C-560. It shifts the emphasis from the children to the rights of the parents.

In June 2010, in the context of its submission on the issue, the Canadian Bar Association said:

...any discussion of “parental rights” is misguided when resolving arrangements for children. The sole focus must be what is best for children.

When a parent before the law must put the interests of the child first, he or she is more inclined to put aside personal interests and make compromises. What is more, under the existing legislation, there is already the option of shared custody, if that is in the best interests of the child.

By amending the existing law, as Bill C-560 proposes, I wonder if we are not encouraging families to engage in lengthy and costly legal battles that will have an adverse affect on the child and the parents.

I would like my esteemed colleagues across the way to tell me whether this bill will give rise to an increased number of more aggressive litigation cases.

I fear that the consequences of Bill C-560 will put more emotional and financial pressure on parents and children who are already vulnerable. Combine that with the fact that some jurisdictions provide very little legal or financial aid for family matters, and we see the limits of this bill. The Canadian Bar Association shares these same concerns.

Parents make decisions before going to court, and those decisions will be better informed if they have their community's support. Parental equality would be more appropriate if those communities had more funding for parental education and had better legal services.

The current legislation always takes these variables into consideration, while keeping the best interests of the child in mind. The child must remain the primary principle in family law in Canada.

Here is how Bill C-560 changes this principle. It tries to create a presumption of equal shared parenting by ignoring the best interests of the child. However, shared custody would not be suitable for all family situations. In fact, many factors need to be taken into account to determine how the child's interests would be best served.

In other words, one size does not fit all. Each child's situation is unique, with different variables. Children grow up in different communities with dynamics that are not always the same. Judges must assess each case separately.

The NDP supports the principles in certain provisions of Bill C-560 concerning the importance of consultation, mediation and arbitration, provided that all this is done in the best interests of the child.

However this bill does not take that into account. I therefore find that this bill is inadequate and, unfortunately, I cannot support it.

Shared Parenting
Statements By Members

January 31st, 2014 / 11:05 a.m.
See context

Conservative

Maurice Vellacott Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, SK

Mr. Speaker, I have had a difficult decision to make. I have four items on the order paper, and all of them are of great importance.

One is a democratic reform initiative, two are explicitly pro-life measures, and the one bill I have on the order paper is for the sake of the children. They all deserve to proceed in this place, but regrettably I can only choose one at this time.

I have selected Bill C-560 to move forward to second reading debate in this chamber. It is my bill to amend the Divorce Act to make equal shared parenting a rebuttable presumption in cases of marital breakup involving children.

Aside from proven abuse or neglect, over three-quarters of Canadians want equal shared parenting to be the presumption in our courts when marriages unfortunately break down. Research clearly demonstrates that equal shared parenting is in the best interests of children.

Also, based on conversations I have been a part of, I have good reason to believe that the other three items I have on the order paper will be picked up in due course by other good MPs who have spine and foresight. For that I am also truly grateful.

 
Divorce Act
Routine Proceedings

December 6th, 2013 / 12:10 p.m.
See context

Conservative

Maurice Vellacott Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, SK

moved for leave to introduce Bill C-560, An Act to amend the Divorce Act (equal parenting) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

Mr. Speaker, I am quite honoured in these few moments to be introducing a private member's bill that would direct the courts in regard to divorce to make equal shared parenting the presumptive arrangement in the best interest of the child, except in proven cases of abuse or neglect.

Fifteen years ago, a joint House-Senate committee presented to Parliament a report entitled “For the Sake of the Children”. That report urged Parliament to amend the Divorce Act to make equal shared parenting the normative determination by courts dealing with situations of divorce involving children. This non-partisan recommendation from that joint House-Senate report was based on compelling research made available to the committee members.

Over the past 15 years, the best research has continued to demonstrate far superior outcomes for children in general when both parents, mom and dad, are actively involved in their children's lives, even if the parents divorce or separate.

Polling from the past several years demonstrates overwhelming support from Canadians for this equal shared parenting. There is in fact slightly more support among women than men for equal parenting. This strong support from almost 80% of Canadians exists across the country, with the strongest regional support coming from Quebec and Atlantic Canada.

Canadians claiming to be Liberal and Bloc supporters expressed the strongest endorsement for equal shared parenting, at 80.6% among Liberals and 82.9% among Bloc Québécois supporters, with the NDP and Conservatives just slightly under 80%.

A variety of countries, such as Belgium, Denmark, Norway, and Australia, and various U.S. states have implemented equal parenting, joint custody, or shared parenting presumptive legislation, which has resulted in lower court costs, less conflict, and improved social outcomes for the children of divorce.

This bill is one of the most apolitical, non-partisan pieces of legislation introduced in this current Parliament.

I look forward to strong support for this important piece of legislation from all members of Parliament who are committed to the best interests of our children.

(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

 

Transcript of the C-560 debate yesterday evening in the House of Commons

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: <maurice.vellacott.a1@parl.gc.ca>
Date: 26 March 2014 17:39
Subject: Transcript of the C-560 debate yesterday evening in the House of Commons
To:

The 2nd hour of 2nd reading debate is scheduled for May 5. After that, the bill will be voted on. If it passes, it will be sent to the Justice Committee for study and possible amendment.

~ ~ ~

House of Commons Hansard – March 25, 2014

Private Members' Business

Divorce Act

Mr. Maurice Vellacott (Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, CPC)

moved that Bill C-560, An Act to amend the Divorce Act (equal parenting) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, be read the second time and referred to a committee.

He said: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to speak to this private member's bill, a very non-partisan one, whose time has come in this country for the sake of families and for the benefit of children.

Throughout my time as a member of Parliament, next year my 19th year, I have fought for legislation and public policy that recognizes and protects the role of the family as the foundational unit of society. That is pretty important, and we pay a price when we do not support it, and try to deal with some of the fallout that happens occasionally and try to mitigate that as well in respect to family.

With Bill C-560 I am continuing my commitment to stand up for the Canadian family by seeking an amendment to our Divorce Act. These amendments would keep both parents in the lives of more children in those cases where marriage breaks down.

The amendments in Bill C-560 would direct the courts in regard to divorce to make equal shared parenting, and I will talk later of the range being 35% to 50% roughly, but making it the presumptive arrangement in the best interests of the child, except in proven cases of abuse or neglect.

I introduced a similar bill, Bill C-422, in June 2009, but it was never debated due to an election call.

Previous to that, in 2008, I introduced Motion No. 483, expressing support for the principle of equal shared parenting. At that time, the Government of the Northwest Territories expressed its solidarity with that position by way of a motion that it passed in its legislature.

Seventeen long years ago, in 1997, just prior to my having stepped onto the federal scene here, a joint House-Senate committee presented to Parliament a report entitled “For the Sake of the Children”. That report urged Parliament to amend the Divorce Act to make equal shared parenting the normative determination by courts dealing with situations of divorce involving children. The non-partisan recommendation from that joint House-Senate report was based on some pretty compelling research. Members can read that extensive testimony. It was made available to all committee members of the different parties.

Bill C-560 is a modest attempt to address some of the concerns and recommendations made in that report and, in particular, the rebuttable presumption, which takes children out of the equation as pawns in the battle for gain by adversarial parents. Some marriage breakdowns are more adversarial than others, but removing children from that equation would be good. Parents could fight over the house, the boat, the land, and whatever other kinds of assets of that marriage, but not the children. We will set some guidelines. We will have some restrictions. It will not be about the children.

Bill C-560 would require parents to co-operate toward equal shared parenting unless they can make a credible compelling case that this would not be in the best interests of their children.

In this respect, Bill C-560 is catching up to the best social science research, which demonstrates the importance of a child's continued access to both parents, a father and a mother, for the best personal and social outcomes.

There are exceptions to this ordinary reality, which is why the presumption is rebuttable, and lawyers in the House would understand what that means, and why there are exceptions for proven neglect and abuse. This is not just allegations of abuse or allegations of this, that, or the other, but evidentiary proven neglect and abuse.

Bill C-560 would also replace the language of custody and access with the language of parents and it uses terms such as “parenting order” and “equal parenting”.

Recommendation 5 from the “For the Sake of the Children” report reads as follows:

  This Committee recommends that the terms “custody and access” no longer be used in the Divorce Act and instead that the meaning of both terms be incorporated and received in the new term “shared parenting”, which shall be taken to include all the meanings, rights, obligations, and common-law and statutory interpretations embodied previously in the terms “custody and access”.

The international organization Leading Women for Shared Parenting reports that:

  Research also proves that, although children want a relationship with both their parents regardless of marital status, healthy bonding with a non-residential parent is impossible without a substantial amount of time spent in that parent’s physical presence.

That means very close to equal.

This legislation would not establish a firm figure for what that equal time would be. In jurisdictions across the world, from more socialist countries, like Sweden, Belgium, and so on, to more-to-the-right countries, such as I suppose Australia and some U.S. states, the range has been determined to be 35% to 50% of residential time with each parent. That is considered to be consistent with the notion as it is in the courts thus far.

Lawyers for Shared Parenting notes that Bill C-560 conforms with the principles of children's rights as advanced by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, which has been ratified by Canada. We are a signatory to that convention.

Article 9 of that UN Convention on the Rights of the Child argues for a child's prior right of access to both parents, thereby establishing a presumption for equal shared parenting in cases of divorce and separation.

Some people have objected to establishing a presumption in law regarding child custody cases, but the reality is that a presumption already exists, de facto, in the system. Upwards of 80% of custody cases are decided for sole custody. In effect, we do have a presumption in favour of sole custody as things presently stand.

What Bill C-560 would do is bring Canadian law into the 21st century by bringing it up to date with the best social science research, which indicates that a child's continued access to both parents following divorce or separation is in the typical child's best interest.

I think it is important to define what this best interest is. So often across the country we use the term, the amorphous, vague term, “the best interests of the child”. Members might have even heard it said in speeches today around the House. Certainly people will say that they do not know if they want this bill to come into place, because they are for the best interests of the child, which is amorphous, vague, and moldable as putty in the hands of lawmakers, social workers, and so on, and it does not really get at what that really is in a factual way.

We now know from social science research that the best interests of children is to have continued access to both parents following divorce or separation. That is in their best interests. That is the understanding from a social science basis of what that term actually should mean.

Others have represented this bill by claiming that it eliminates judicial discretion. I am not a lawyer and of course I would not want to offend my legal colleagues, so we are not eliminating all judicial discretion on these custodial matters. This bill would not eliminate all judicial discretion. There could still be a consideration of the situation of each family that comes before the courts.

What the bill does is tighten up the language surrounding judicial discretion, so that it becomes more difficult to use an antiquated interpretation of the best interests of the child as an excuse to rationalize a disproportionate percentage of sole custody decisions in today's family courts.

Suggestions that a rebuttable presumption is too onerous a standard are also brought forward by some people. That particular accusation is really inconsistent with multiple constitutional rulings in many countries, including Canada, where those rulings have made judgments that parents are presumed to act in the best interests of their children unless shown otherwise.

If one wants to say that rebuttable presumption is too onerous, then really one is almost arguing for the revocation of the basic legal doctrine that one is presumably innocent unless proven otherwise. That is a basic tenet of our judicial system, that one is innocent until proven otherwise, presumptively innocent. In respect to parents, it is same thing. Unless one can prove that a person is not a fit parent, we are not wise to make those kinds of assumptions.

Some have argued that a presumption of equal shared parenting would increase conflict in already acrimonious family situations. In fact it is the adversarial family court system that fuels such conflict and disenfranchisement of parents that is really the most harmful to children, pitting parents against each another in bitter court battles that frequently result in a winning and a losing parent. Do we really desire that kind of a system where we litigate over children? Do we desire a system where the courts remove fit parents from their own children's lives?

The negative impact of this current system on children, mostly and foremost, as well as on their parents and extended family is really quite unconscionable and immoral.

Bill C-560 should reduce conflict because it takes children out of the equation as objects of possession to be fought over by parents. With a presumption of equal shared parenting, access to the children cannot continue to be a part of divorce negotiations and treated like a portion of the winnings or losses of divorce agreements.

Parents would know that, barring cases of proven abuse or neglect, the courts would enforce an equitable access arrangement between both parents. Parents would be free to surrender some access, if that works better for their personal circumstances and their children, but the presumption would create a disincentive for hostile parents to try to keep access to the children from the other parent.

For example, if a father were a long-haul trucker, he might say he has the presumption of equal shared parenting but, for him, it only works to have the kids about 30% of the time and the mother to have them 70% of the time. The mother might say that she is a physician with a busy and pressured life, and she can only handle the children 35% of the time at her location. In those cases, that kind of arrangement would be made. It would not impose upon people to say that access has to be 50%. It could be arranged, and it could be anywhere from 35% to 50%.

The presumption of equal parenting would also be expected to reduce divorce rates. This is proven to be the case. As far back as 1998, researchers postulated that. When people go into a situation without the presumption that they are going to get it all, sometimes they back away a bit and they begin to work at those marriage difficulties.

People like Margaret F. Brinig, Frank Buckley, and Dr. Sanford Braver and various publications, such as International Review of Law and Economics and American Law and Economics Review, have found that there is a pre-emptive and preventive factor in this whole concept of equal shared parenting.

I think colleagues in the House are well aware of the social costs surrounding deviant behaviour among youth, whether it is in terms of the justice system or the welfare system. An important way to reduce those costs and the logistical challenges related to policing, the courts, social welfare program delivery, social worker caseloads, and more is to strengthen the families in our communities, including children's access to both their father and their mother, even in cases of separation and divorce.

Children in sole custody settings are reported as having a notably higher likelihood—three times higher, in fact—of suffering from low self-esteem, insecurity, and rejection, being underachievers, including school dropout, substance abuse, depression, suicide, teen pregnancy, and even crime. It is kind of jarring, but I am just stating the facts here. Approximately 80% of criminals are from single parent homes.

I need to quickly qualify that my hat is off to the single parents I have known, and who we all know, from the House, our ridings, and elsewhere, who do a 24-7 job and who do a remarkable job. However, it is not an easy job. The reality is, and the statistics are, that 80% of individuals in trouble with the law are from single parent home situations.

In most cases of sole custody, it is granted maybe more typically to the mother and the father is shut out. Fatherlessness in particular has been isolated as a serious indicator for poor outcomes among children. We have Big Brothers Big Sisters and other substitutes for that very reason.

I can list a host of problems. There is anxiety, learning disabilities, truancy, runaways, drug abuse, teenage pregnancies, mental illness, and suicide. They are some of the things that can occur on a long list or litany, when fathers are removed from homes unnecessarily. Equal shared parenting is an important way to combat these risks among the growing segment of children who live in homes that have experienced divorce.

There is a lot of good research. I will just drop a few names at this point. There is Dr. Edward Kruk, a professor at the University of British Columbia. There is a new study by Richard A. Warshak at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. D.A. Smith and G.R. Jarjoura have an article on social structure and criminal victimization. We have a long list of many others who have done extensive research on the benefits of equal shared parenting. People can contact me later about them, and they are on my website for people to look at.

We have countries in Europe, including France, Sweden, the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, and Luxembourg, that have adopted shared parenting. A number of U.S. states have as well.

We find, as well, across our country, that about 80% of those who claim to be NDP supporters and 80% of Liberal supporters support this concept of equal shared parenting; also 80% of Conservative supporters. More women than men, above 80% again, support equal shared parenting. All across the country, the highest levels of support are in Quebec and the Atlantic provinces, where it is again above 80%.

I would close by thanking my colleague from the Liberal Party, Raymonde Folco, who was the seconder on my bill, Bill C-422. She is an avowed, staunch feminist, who stood with me as we launched that first bill.

The bill is one that all colleagues in the House, irrespective of gender or part of the country, would support for the benefit of children.

[Translation]

Ms. Françoise Boivin (Gatineau, NDP):

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the member opposite for his praiseworthy dedication to this cause and his persistence.

However, I would like to ask him how the existing legislation prevents equal parenting, since everything he said over the past 15 minutes gave me the impression that if that were how the courts made decisions, there would be no need for Bill C-560.

I also wanted to mention that I am really concerned about clause 10 of his bill, the retroactivity clause. I would like him to comment on that because it means that cases that have already been ruled on could go back to court. That could result in considerable uncertainty around custody across Canada. 

[English]

Mr. Maurice Vellacott:

Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the member's question and I look forward to her speech. We will learn from that, I am sure.

In respect to the member's first question, as things stand in our country, people can work this issue out. I remember Kris Titus, who was the president of the Equal Parenting Council across Canada, an umbrella organization for 40-some groups, telling me about when she and her ex, who were living in close communities, went to the judge the first time around to try to work out this kind of arrangement of approximately equal shared parenting. They could do it because they were living in proximity, but the judge could not get his head around it and said that, no, it would probably be a sole custody kind of thing. This was thinking in the courts at that time, and there is probably still a lot of that today.

They had to go back, and they had a battle. It is a credit to her that they actually did that. They did get an agreement of approximately equal shared parenting, but it was not easy to do in a system biased against it.

Mr. Sean Casey (Charlottetown, Lib.):

Mr. Speaker, I want to come back to a question that was posed by the member for Gatineau but that was not dealt with in the member's answer. It is something that troubles me also.

Most custody and divorce arrangements result in a separation agreement that deals with custody and access to the children. Many of these agreements are then incorporated into court orders. One of the things the bill would do would be to effectively reopen all of these agreements and make them subject to further negotiation and possibly to further litigation.

Does the member have any appreciation for the chaos that would be caused in otherwise settled, stable child custody and access arrangements by this retroactivity?

Mr. Maurice Vellacott:

Mr. Speaker, that is quite a statement from the member about the kind of chaos that will be, as opposed to the chaos there presently is across the country.

With due respect to the member, we have shut out people along the way over the course of many years, and the tender years doctrine has sometimes done that in a very considerable way.

Parents never lose the desire to have contact with their children over the course of time. I can tell the member about too many conversations with parents who, after many years, once the money ran out after paying off the lawyers, finally came to an agreement.

I would think that there may be some opening of scenarios, and there will be some reasonable compromises come of that, based on a fair presumption in terms of access. Some of those children at this point will obviously be able to make the choice themselves and say that they want to be with mom or with dad on some kind of basis. They do that now. It is sometimes not honoured, but I think that will be something that will generally work out over time.

I think it is a bit of scare story to talk about chaos when there is actually chaos right now in the legal system in Canada.

Mr. Erin O'Toole (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade, CPC):

Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the hon. member for bringing this debate to the floor here today, and particularly for mentioning Kristen Titus. I am happy to call Kris a friend and a resident of my constituency. She has been a passionate advocate on these issues as a mother talking about the importance of parents in the lives of children.

One of the positive developments I have seen since my years at law school and following the evolution of family law is the increase in collaborative law settings that avoid the strife and the real impact on children that the drawn-out traditional approach to divorce has caused in Canada. Many family law lawyers are opting out of that and agreeing to work within a collaborative setting that is focused on making sure that the children do not get missed as the parents settle these disputes.

I am wondering if that evolution of collaborative law toward family law would complement what the member is suggesting in terms of equal parenting and keeping the children and their needs at the focus of family law.

Mr. Maurice Vellacott:

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for the question. In fact, that is the whole point of what this bill is intended to do. There are many good lawyers in the collaborative law practice across the country whom I have talked to, and the collaborative law practices across the country are driving this kind of a bill. As a result, we would probably have more of these situations settled outside of the courts by way of collaboration and mediation.

That is what has happened in socialist countries, left-leaning countries, and right-of-centre countries, where they have implemented equal shared parenting. Collaborative law and mediation, and that kind of thing, become increasingly important when we have a rebuttable presumption of equal shared parenting, aside from cases of abuse and neglect.

That is a great question, and a sign of the times by way of what we have on the floor here today.

[Translation]

Ms. Françoise Boivin (Gatineau, NDP):

Mr. Speaker, as I was saying to the hon. member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin, I appreciate the work he has done and his persistence, because this is not the first incarnation of Bill C-560. It came up as Bill C-422 in the previous Parliament.

Clearly, it is a hot topic. I must say that, since my election in May 2011, it has probably been one of the bills on which I have received the most correspondence and heard the most opinions, all of them varied. I received even more for some other bills.

First of all, I would like to thank all those who have written to me, especially those in my riding with an interest in the matter. I think that everyone is interested in it. Everyone in the House shares the concern about providing our children with the best environment possible. There is no doubt about that. I have felt that from both sides, both from those who supported Bill C-560 and from those who expressed major reservations.

I have also had the privilege of listening to many groups on both sides. I had an absolutely fascinating conversation with Brian Ludmer, one of the people who worked on this bill, one of its architects, one might say, in terms of its terminology.

What fascinates me about the debate on Bill C-560 is that, for the most part, everyone is saying much the same thing. Views begin to diverge when it comes to the solution or to what has to be done. That is not so clear.

I have analyzed Bill C-560. I would never claim to be an expert in matrimonial law. That is why, before making any recommendations to the NDP caucus, I spent a lot of time talking with people with much more expertise than I have. I met with people from the Canadian Bar Association and the Barreau du Québec, among others.

Make no mistake, I have already heard the arguments of those who support Bill C-560. They will say that lawyers just want to protect their turf, but that is not so. I have also spoken with lawyers who have dealt with complex cases that were not always resolved the way they would have hoped. My impression is that those dramatic cases are the reason behind Bill C-560, and Bill C-422 before it. There are a number of them in Canada, including in Quebec. Sometimes, we wonder which legal planet we are living on.

That being said, just because some judges apply a law a certain way does not necessarily mean that we should shred up that law, throw it out and completely change the system. Whether the Conservative member introducing Bill C-560 likes it or not, this represents an immense change. It is not as easy as he would have us believe. What we do here, the thing that is at the heart of everything referred to as “child care” in Canada, is serving the best interests of the child. That is the basic principle. What this bill does is create a presumption.

When we create a presumption, even if it is refutable, in other words if we can counter or set aside this presumption by introducing evidence, this is still very different than starting with the basic premise, namely the best interests of the child.

In this bill, it is fascinating to see the text that speaks to presumption. I will read the exact text:

  The presumptions referred to in subsection (4) [equal parenting] are rebutted if it is established that the best interests of the child would be substantially enhanced by allocating parenting time or parental responsibility other than equally.

Not only does this preclude the essential nature of the best interests of the child, but it demands a considerable interest. There is a major problem with that. Imposing this presumption is the major problem with this bill.

I asked my colleague a question about retroactivity. He could very well have introduced his bill without undoing everything that has previously been done. Not only is this situation tragic, but tons of cases could end up back in court, cases that people have learned to live with. Perhaps those were not good solutions at the time, but this is what could happen now. Retroactivity provisions in legislation are rather dangerous. The Conservative government was able to see it last week with the Whaling decision. That is a red flag for me.

The NDP caucus has often supported bills at second reading to be able to conduct an in-depth analysis in committee. The major amendment that needs to be made in this case is to withdraw the presumption of equal parenting. My colleague is right that major problems need to be addressed. However, we should not do this by way of a private member's bill; we should have a government bill instead. In so doing, we would be able to better regulate the right of judges to grant custody with a view to equal parenting. Everyone agrees with that principle. I come from Quebec, where civil law stipulates that both parents have parental authority. That is something we are still hoping to achieve.

Under the circumstances, it is not even possible to amend the bill. I will therefore not waste my time. I would rather ask the government why it does not consult with experts in the field in order to draft a piece of legislation that is true to what the member is trying to do. In fact, several reports have been signed in the House for Bill C-422. That would be done legally and without undermining the fundamental principle in family law with respect to custody and the best interests of the child.

The problem is that, once custody is granted to the mother, for example, it takes a lot of convincing to get a judge to change the custody terms. Things can change over the years. Sometimes, a person is not ready for joint custody when the child is one, two or three, but is ready when the child is five or seven years old. We should make equal parenting more flexible over the years.

It would have been much better to throw the baby, meaning the system, out with the bathwater, and say that the child's interest is no longer our concern. Although that is not what I heard my colleague say, because I will not put words in his mouth, that is what his bill says.

I am prepared to accept his speech as it stands, but I must deal with the terminology in the bill. It removes the principle of the interest of the child and creates a presumption of equal parenting and a heavier than necessary burden to make the interest of the child the priority again. That is a major problem that adds to the problem with retroactivity.

With all due respect for the drafters of this bill, it is fundamentally so different from what it should be that I would rather we focus our energy on agreeing that we need to make changes to the custody system in consideration of the best interests of the child and equal custody so that both parents have access to the child. That way, we would be doing a service to society. The bill currently has major problems that we cannot remedy or amend.

It is unfortunate, but this bill should not even proceed to second reading. However, we could sit down with the people who are having problems and who have had a difficult time and listen to what they have to say.

Sometimes judges have simply not caught up with the times and need a few gentle nudges to remind them that having two parents—a father and a mother—is important for the child.

[English]

Mr. Sean Casey (Charlottetown, Lib.):

Mr. Speaker, may I begin by first congratulating the member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin for his long service in this place. We differ in philosophy. We differ in political stripe. In fact, we differ on this bill. However, for anyone who has served his constituents and Canadians for 19 years, that is indeed something to be commended. I know the member has indicated that he does not intend to re-offer in the upcoming election. We have several months before the next election, I think, but it is not too early to acknowledge the significant contribution of this parliamentarian.

The bill placed before the House in his name, Bill C-560, is an effort to change the standard applied by the courts when dealing with divorce cases. Specifically, the summary contained in the bill reads as follows:

  This enactment amends the Divorce Act to replace the concept of “custody orders” with that of “parenting orders”. It instructs judges, when making a parenting order, to apply the principle of equal parenting unless it is established that the best interests of the child would be substantially enhanced by allocating parental responsibility other than equally.

This is not the first time that the member has introduced a bill on this matter. The most significant changes that the bill would bring to the Divorce Act are, first, the removal of the current definition of “custody” from the Divorce Act, replacing it with “parenting”. That is defined as “the act of assuming the role of a parent to a child, including custody and all of the rights and responsibilities commonly and historically associated with the role of a parent”. Second is the creation of a presumption that allocating parenting time equally between the spouses and equal parental responsibility are in the best interests of the child. Third is the addition of factors that courts must consider in making custody orders.

The current law mandates the application of the best interests of the child test. The best interests of the child test has been a fundamental part of most legislation relating to children for years. This doctrine is not unique to family law proceedings. It is also used in federal legislation under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, the Citizenship Act, and the Youth Criminal Justice Act. It is also used in some provincial legislation dealing with matters, such as custody, access, and child support for unmarried couples; child protection legislation, and by that I mean legislation dealing with the apprehension and supervision of children by child protective services; adoption legislation; and in some provinces, change of name legislation.

None of the federal acts defines best interests of the child, as was pointed out by the member. However, many provincial family law and child protection acts include extensive definitions of the concept. Some provincial acts even include different best interests of the child tests for different contexts. For example, the Ontario Child and Family Services Act defines the test differently for child protection than it does for adoption.

As it stands now, courts must apply the best interests of the child from the perspective of the child, not the parents, and they must consider the long-term interests of the child as well as the child's day-to-day needs.

Three primary considerations under the best interests of the child test that the courts often consider are preserving the status quo in the interests of maintaining some stability for the child, whether one parent acted as the primary caregiver during the relationship, and the importance of keeping siblings together when considering future housing arrangements.

The best interests of the child is a critical component of the Divorce Act, and it appears in sections relating to custody. Under the current act, the best interests of the child, as it relates to condition, means that needs and other circumstances of the child are the overriding factor that the courts may consider when making a custody order. Further, when making a custody order, courts must give effect to the principle that a child should have as much contact with each spouse as is consistent with the best interests of the child. For that purpose, it should take into consideration the willingness of the person for whom custody is sought to facilitate such contact.

We all know that divorce is often a painful experience for couples, particularly when children are involved. In an ideal world, parents would see past their differences and would apply what the courts currently apply, which is to say, the best interests of the child standard. However, since divorce is sometimes acrimonious, painful, and filled with emotion, the best interests of the child are sometimes lost or confused with the subjective interests of a parent, and often those competing interests are to the detriment of the child or children.

It is for that reason, in part, that a judge must have the ability to apply his discretion to ascertain the facts and eventually make a determination of what is in the best interests of the child. I fear that what the hon. member is proposing would seriously alter that standard and would remove the discretion of the judge to assess the case through the best interests of the child and not the father or mother.

I am not alone in my concern about this bill. The Canadian Bar Association has very serious concerns about this bill. This is what the CBA had to say about the bill when it was introduced in a previous Parliament as Bill C-422, now Bill C-560. I will quote the Canadian Bar Association, which stated:

  As lawyers, we assist all family members in restructuring their responsibilities and arrangements following separation and divorce. As a result, the CBA Section sees this issue from all sides. We firmly believe that the only perspective to foster outcomes that are best for children is to require that the courts and parents focus solely on the children’s interests in making decisions.

 

 

Bill C-422 [now Bill C-560] does not accomplish what it proposes. It does not give parties tools to resolve differences, nor does it assist them in making plans to share decision-making and physical care of children to minimize conflict and maximize children’s benefits. It would move from considering the individual child to preferring parents’ rights. It would encourage contentious litigation in future cases of family breakdown, and equally important, would cause thousands of children to be re-exposed to litigation and conflict as many settled cases would be reopened.

Those are the words of Canadian Bar Association. They are not mine.

It further stated:

 

Under current law, the legal playing field is even; there is no gender bias in law requiring judges to consider “the best interests of the child” as paramount. Instead, the Bill proposes an overly simplistic idea of equality: rather than considering a fair result best for the children involved in the case at hand, children must be split right down the middle. The Bill does not advance equality for either fathers or mothers. Its proposals would come at the sacrifice of the appropriate focus, solely on what is best for children.

There is more in the way of opposition to this bill, and it comes from the member's own party. Senior ministers have come out against this effort. In 2009, speaking at the Canadian Bar Association's annual conference, the then minister of justice and attorney general, now defence minister, was asked his position on equal parenting and the bill we are now debating. He stated, “the best interests of the child are always paramount...and should be”.

The member for Saskatoon—Wanuskewin will know that just two weeks ago, his colleague and friend, the current Minister of Justice, appeared at the justice committee to account for his supplementary estimates request. During the meeting, the minister was very willing to answer questions, and I felt he was reasonable and fair in some of his responses, including the response to a question about whether the government intends to invoke the notwithstanding clause of the charter on matters where it disagrees with the Supreme Court.

I posed a direct question to the minister about Bill C-560, which is before the House today. This is what I asked the minister at committee:

 

A private member's bill is coming before the House, C-560, dealing with the Divorce Act. Back in 2009, your predecessor, [the Minister of National Defence], indicated that the best interests of the child are always paramount. Given that this question is about to come before the House, what are your views on that, sir?

He answered:

 

This particular private member's bill will receive, I'm sure, the rigorous examination that all private members' bills receive. I am familiar with the one you're referencing. I can tell you, having practised some family law—as you have in Prince Edward Island—that the long-held legal maxim and the jurisprudence definitely supports that the best interests of the child will remain the primary concern. I see no change in that regard.

I asked a supplementary:

 

The bill proposes to weaken that in favour of parental rights. Do you realize that?

The minister's response was “Yes, I do realize that”.

The Divorce Act currently establishes the best interests of the child as the paramount consideration in custody cases. In other words, the rights of the parent are subordinate to the interests of the child.

This legislation seeks to weaken that. It is not acceptable to the Liberal Party of Canada. It is not acceptable to the Canadian Bar Association. It is not acceptable to the present Minister of Justice or to the former minister of justice. That is why we will oppose the bill.

Mr. Robert Goguen (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice, CPC):

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in the House of Commons today to speak to Bill C-560, An Act to amend the Divorce Act (equal parenting) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts.

The provisions of the Divorce Act regarding custody and access have not changed since they came into effect in 1986. According to section 16 of the Divorce Act, when making an order respecting custody or access, the court must be guided by only one principle, the best interests of the child.

Provincial and territorial family laws are also guided by the principle of the best interests of the child. This principle is also recognized by many instruments of international law, such as the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The principle of the best interests of the child recognizes that each child is unique and that his or her best interests must be determined on a case-by-case basis. When applying the principle of the best interests of the child in cases of custody or the role of the parent, the courts take into account a number of factors. The main factors pertain to the child, such as age, stage of development, presence of special needs, and the wishes of the child, if any. There are also factors related to the role of the parents, such as the parenting abilities of each parent and how they plan to take care of the child. Finally, there are a number of other factors such as the child's relationships with brothers and sisters, grandparents or any other relative.

Subsection 16(10) of the Divorce Act also refers to the principles of maximum contact and co-operative parenting, which the courts must also take into account when considering all the pertinent factors in order to determine the best interests of the child.

These principles are as follows: the courts apply the principle whereby the child of the marriage must have as much contact with each spouse as is consistent with the best interests of the child; and for the purposes of applying the principle of maximum contact, the court shall take into consideration the willingness of the person requesting custody to facilitate such contact. This is known as the friendly parent rule.

Courts do not consider a person's past conduct unless the conduct is relevant to the ability of that person to act as a parent. When a custody order is issued, the court can amend it if the court is convinced that the child's situation has significantly changed since a judge issued the most recent order.

If the court determines that there has been a significant change, it issues an order that meets the best interests of the child. When it issues a variation, the court applies the principles of the best interests of the child, of maximum contact and of cooperative parenting. It also applies the rule on past conduct, if needed. Basically, the court has the discretionary power to establish any arrangement that it deems to be in the best interests of the child.

Bill C-560 would amend the provisions on custody and access in the Divorce Act. It would add an approach based on an equal sharing of the parental role and will replace the terms “custody” and “access” with “parenting orders”, “parental responsibility” and “parenting time”.

The bill would add two presumptions about the role of the parents. These are the presumption that parenting time should be shared equally between the spouses and the presumption that parental responsibility should be equal or joint. In Bill C-560, parental responsibility essentially comes down to the power to make decisions on behalf of the child.

The presumptions would not apply if it is established that the interests of the child would be better served by the unequal division of parenting time or parental responsibility. When the presumptions do not apply, the court would still give effect to the principle that a child of the marriage should have as much contact with each parent as is consistent with that child's best interests.

The bill proposes to add several criteria that the court would have to consider when determining the best interests of the child. It also proposes to add rules about changing the child's residence. It also contains provisions encouraging the spouses to settle their differences without going to court and to use other dispute resolution mechanisms such as mediation.

Family law is a very important area of law.

Canadians are much more likely to have problems related to family law than problems related to other aspects of the justice system.

As is the case for many areas of jurisdiction set out in our Constitution, responsibility for family law is shared by the federal government and the provinces and territories. The provinces and territories have authority to legislate on issues related to couples that are not married and separate, as well as married couples that separate but do not divorce. The provinces and territories are also primarily responsible for administering this justice. This means they are responsible for the operation of the courts and family justice services, such as education programs for children and mediation. The federal government has jurisdiction over divorce and any related matters, such as custody.

Given that this is a shared jurisdiction, both levels of government, that is the federal as well as the provincial and territorial, have been working together for some time to improve the legislation on family law and the family justice system. For instance, as part of the supporting families experiencing separation and divorce initiative, the federal government provided the provinces and territories with funding to support family justice services, especially innovative projects such as specialized services for families experiencing major conflicts and using mediation services from a distance.

During these many years of collaboration, the family law system has gone through many changes. For instance, authorities now focus more on appropriate mechanisms for dispute resolution. In order to minimize the negative impact of divorce on children and other family members, families need a system that will maintain good relationships as much as possible.

Collaborative family law, alternative dispute resolution and mediation are examples of different approaches that help parents come up with solutions themselves. Another example of the ever-changing system of family law has to do with the results of custody cases.

The Divorce Act itself has not changed, but the kinds of orders handed down have changed considerably since new provisions regarding custody and access came into effect in 1986.

In 1986, the majority of orders gave so-called “traditional” custody to mothers, and only 1% of orders resulted in joint legal custody.

The data coming out of certain Canadian courts between 2010 and 2012 paint a very different picture. The data are compiled according to who is living with the child. It is sometimes known as physical custody, which is similar to the concept of parenting time in Bill C-560. The data also show that legal custody of children refers to making important decisions about them. Legal custody is similar to the idea of parental responsibility found in the bill.

The proportion of orders made under the Divorce Act that require parents to make important decisions together has increased from 1% to 75% in recent years.

Statistics show considerable changes in physical custody or parenting time. In 1998, barely 5% of divorce orders set out a shared custody arrangement, under which the children had to spend at least 40% of their time with each parent. However, if we look at the numbers between 2010 and 2012, approximately 21% of cases involved shared custody. That is a significant increase.

Between 2010 and 2012, only 5% of the cases involved sole custody arrangements. That is a lot of numbers, but that is how family law has evolved.

In more than one-third of the orders made under the Divorce Act, judges order that children spend at least 40% of their time with the father. That is a significant, positive shift from what was happening in 1998.

Bill C-560 raises important issues, and I am looking forward to hearing the other members' thoughts on it.

Mr. Pierre Jacob (Brome—Missisquoi, NDP):

Mr. Speaker, over the past few decades, society has gone through some serious economic and social upheaval. We are seeing the emergence of new types of families. There is a growing number of single parent and blended families.

According to the most recent census of 2006, there were 1,267,000 families in Quebec. Of that number, one-third were single parent families. They now represent a little more than a quarter of all families. That is the highest percentage ever recorded. We must take this new reality into account.

That is why I am speaking to Bill C-560, which amends the Divorce Act to replace the concept of custody orders with that of parenting orders. This bill instructs judges to apply the principle of equal parenting when making a parenting order.

This is not the first time that this bill has come before the House. It is similar to Bill C-422 from the last Parliament, in 2010. As with its predecessor, I have some reservations about Bill C-560.

When it comes to divorce, we must focus the debate on the real issue and that is the best interests of the child. I fear that is not the case with Bill C-560. It shifts the emphasis from the children to the rights of the parents.

In June 2010, in the context of its submission on the issue, the Canadian Bar Association said:

  ...any discussion of “parental rights” is misguided when resolving arrangements for children. The sole focus must be what is best for children.

When a parent before the law must put the interests of the child first, he or she is more inclined to put aside personal interests and make compromises. What is more, under the existing legislation, there is already the option of shared custody, if that is in the best interests of the child.

By amending the existing law, as Bill C-560 proposes, I wonder if we are not encouraging families to engage in lengthy and costly legal battles that will have an adverse affect on the child and the parents.

I would like my esteemed colleagues across the way to tell me whether this bill will give rise to an increased number of more aggressive litigation cases.

I fear that the consequences of Bill C-560 will put more emotional and financial pressure on parents and children who are already vulnerable. Combine that with the fact that some jurisdictions provide very little legal or financial aid for family matters, and we see the limits of this bill. The Canadian Bar Association shares these same concerns.

Parents make decisions before going to court, and those decisions will be better informed if they have their community's support. Parental equality would be more appropriate if those communities had more funding for parental education and had better legal services.

The current legislation always takes these variables into consideration, while keeping the best interests of the child in mind. The child must remain the primary principle in family law in Canada.

Here is how Bill C-560 changes this principle. It tries to create a presumption of equal shared parenting by ignoring the best interests of the child. However, shared custody would not be suitable for all family situations. In fact, many factors need to be taken into account to determine how the child's interests would be best served.

In other words, one size does not fit all. Each child's situation is unique, with different variables. Children grow up in different communities with dynamics that are not always the same. Judges must assess each case separately.

The NDP supports the principles in certain provisions of Bill C-560 concerning the importance of consultation, mediation and arbitration, provided that all this is done in the best interests of the child.

However this bill does not take that into account. I therefore find that this bill is inadequate and, unfortunately, I cannot support it.

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bruce Stanton):

The hon. member for Brome—Missisquoi will have four minutes when the House resumes debate on this issue.

The time provided for the consideration of private members' business has now expired and the order is dropped to the bottom of the order of precedence on the order paper.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/PASparentalAlienation/

 

Equal Parenting Roundups for Natural Parents' Rights

An "Equal Parenting Roundup" is a gathering of all the disparate parental rights groups that are within driving distance of one another.  Whereas any group can call an "Ad Hoc" Roundup with their neighbors, we hope you will have at least one annual EP Roundup an incorporate it into the Equal Parenting Trek

An Equal Parenting Roundup is an exercise in your Freedom of Assembly and Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Assembly, following some of the traditions that established our Supremacy of Parliament.  Ideally, you will want be evangelical about your Roundup, you can add to it's end a Free Man's March

More:  About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;
About: EPT =  Equal Parenting Trek;
EP Trek Generic Calendar

New Organization of Leading Women for Shared Parenting May Finally End Courts Favoring Mothers, Rachel Alexander

2013-06-03  New Organization of Leading Women for Shared Parenting May Finally End Courts Favoring Mothers, Rachel Alexander

A new group is emerging that may finally change the way Family Courts treat mothers and fathers. Currently, the default in most states is to award the lion's share of the time with the children to mothers, and require the father to pay child support. This is unfair to fathers, and has resulted in massive abuses within the system, leading to fathers committing suicide and being imprisoned. A new organization I am a part of, Leading Women for Shared Parenting, seeks to remedy this inequality by having women and mothers speak up in favor of shared parenting. When legislators realize that women themselves are in favor of reversing this bias, they should finally change the laws to make the default a presumption of 50/50 equally shared custody.

Fathers' rights organizations have tried for years to change the status quo, but have not quite pulled it off, no doubt due to the growing stigma against men in society. They have been marginalized by being called sore losers and deadbeats who only want to lower their child support.

Continually, between 78 and 87 percent of both men and women support shared parenting – and there is no statistical difference between the sexes. Dr. William Fabricius, an Associate Professor of Psychology of at Arizona State University, discovered these results when polling residents in Pima County, Arizona. He also found that polls taken in Canada and a vote in Massachusetts revealed very similar results. But sadly, Fabricius writes, “there is a very sizable gap between current popular views strongly favoring equal custody, as reflected in polls and votes on custody allocation, and actual legal outcomes.”

The reason we don't have shared parenting is because it's a big business. Family law attorneys make too much money off the years of legal fighting, and the state bar associations help their own keep their greedy claws controlling the system by lobbying state legislatures to oppose shared parenting bills.

There is significant research showing that shared parenting is best for kids. There are over three dozen medical studies which indicate that shared parenting arrangements – joint decision-making and near-equal parenting time – provide the best outcomes for children. The studies also reveal that parenting time of every other weekend, commonly ordered by judges, is harmful to children.

The stereotype that women are more nurturing than men has been challenged by a study published a couple of years ago in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The study found that fatherhood awakens men's nurturing side. Testosterone levels in men fall 30 percent after they become fathers, and even more when the children are infants and when the fathers are significantly involved with child-rearing.

According to a report released this month from Pew Research Analysis, women aren't staying at home anymore, dependent upon men earning an income to support them. Mothers are the sole or primary source of income for a record 40 percent of households with children. This is almost a 400 percent increase from 1960, when just 11 percent of mothers were the breadwinners.

What sister, mother, grandmother, or daughter hasn't had a brother, father or son suffer within the unjust family law system? Many women end up helping their male relative pay his child support and legal fees. I have no children of my own, but have spent money and countless hours helping male relatives with legal proceedings related to child custody and child support.

No doubt as a result of this broad unfairness, the women who are a part of this new organization surprisingly range from conservative Phyllis Schlafly to a former president of the feminist National Organization of Women. With agreement all across the political spectrum, there is a tremendous chance that state legislators will be able to fight off the slick lobbyists from Bar associations and pass shared custody legislation.

Legislators must also fight against pressure to substitute watered-down bills that do not provide for approximately 50/50 shared custody. “Joint custody” is often little more than a semantic difference from “sole custody.” Joint custody generally gives one parent much more time and control, as well as child support from the other parent. Unless one parent has committed abuse, serious crimes, or similar circumstances, the default should be a presumption of equally shared parenting.

Children – including daughters – who were withheld from their fathers while growing up, who saw their fathers living out of their cars and crippled financially, have now become adults and are saying enough. It is way overdue to stop appeasing Big Law at the expense of families. Now, a group of Leading Women is speaking out.

More:  Issues:  Alexander,  Rachel:  Leading Women for Shared Parenting;
Home:  Equal Parenting Trek 2013;
News:  Canadian Bar Association demands resignation of MPs who criticize Activist Judges, Brian Tabor President

Equal Parenting is like a "Three Layer Cake"

It seems to help thinking of an Equal Parenting Agreement like a "Three Layer Cake".  Each successive Layer rests upon and satisfies an Obligation of the former 

1.  The Bottom Layer:  The Initial Equal Parenting Agreement

Initial Equal Parenting Agreement creating full time, all time equality of both Natural Parents, subordinate to no third parties (a Constitutional right ignored by most Family Courts); a series of tentative Parenting Timetables for each year and statement of intent, or  "Wishes"; the requirement that the tentative Parenting Timetable laid out there will be reviewed and finalized annually and incorporated into the Annual Parenting Supplement.  Parental authority and discretion is always equal and unaffected by inequalities of Parenting Time allocations.

The Initial Agreement establishes a collection of Covenants which span all years to the children's Age of Majority.  Some Covenants will span the entire term of the Agreement, while some Covenants can only be made In Principle and will be deferred to an Annual Parenting Supplement

At-A-Glance® Erasable Yearly Vertical Jumbo Wall Calendar, 48" x 32", 20052.  Middle Layer:  The Annual Supplement & its Parenting Timetable

The "Middle Layer", the series of "Annual Parenting Supplements" finalizes a specified subset of Covenants which could in the Initial Agreement be made only In Principal, (or as "Wishes" in the language of a Trust).  Typically these are the Guardianship topics.

Each Annual Supplement and it's embedded Parenting Time Timetable is necessary to perform the Obligations or Trusts of the Initial Agreement.   

The Annual Parenting Supplements are for near term planning of the upcoming school year and finalizing the Parenting Timetable for the coming  year.  The Parenting Timetable created must meet the test for equality established in 1) the initial Equal Parenting Agreement. 

In an Equal Parenting Agreement, Parenting Time is NOT an indicator of Parental Authority.  Two Equal Parents may by consent agree to unequal Parenting Time, but this does NOT impugn the Parental Authority of either Natural Parent relative to third parties without Cause or Consent.

Each Annual Supplement is made about the same time each year and deals only with parenting decisions for the upcoming year which were deferred in the Initial Agreement, and made only In Principle. 

An Annual Parenting Supplement for each year fulfills an Obligation created in the Initial Agreement, and one will be made annually  until the Agreement's term is completed at the Age of Majority of the youngest Child.  Failure to create an Annual Supplement means the requirements of the Initial Agreement made In Principle will be by silence be given approval.

3.  Top Layer:  Autonomy of Both Equal Parents on all matters not previously Constrained

The Parenting Timetable alternates physical custody and all residual parenting questions not previously constrained by agreement in  the Initial Agreement or the current Annual Parenting Supplements  between the two otherwise equal Natural Parents. 

Both Natural Parents retain full Parental Authority relative to all third parties, and are subject to no third party Interloper or to a Public Officer without statutory Cause or Consent.  This way the Natural Parent who is not the Timetabled Parent (and is now a subordinate Co-Parent) remains at all times empowered to protect the Child from the State and all other threats.

4.  Icing on the Cake.....

Forget about the Courts, and your Ex, and go have fun with your kids!!!

More:  About:  Equal Parenting How To's:  Three Layer Cake;
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting;
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;
About: EPT =  Equal Parenting Trek;
About:  EP Trek Generic Calendar:
Issues:  Kinship Families or Grandparents raising Children::

LGBT Activist Masha Gessen: Gay Marriage is about the destruction of Marriage

LGBT Activist Masha Gessen: Gay Marriage is about the destruction of Marriage

"It's a no-brainer that the institution of Marriage should not exist.  ...  That causes my brain some trouble....  Why it causes me trouble is because fighting for gay marriage generally involves lying about what we're going to do with marriage when we get there. ..

We lie that the institution of marriage is not going to change... and hat is a Lie. 

The institution of Marriage is going to change,  and it should change..  Again, I don't think it should exist.

More:  News:  Gessen, Masha :  "Gay Marriage = destruction of Marriage" 

Domestic Violence Reports, DV Fraud, VAWA

Now that women are fully participating in the workforce, it is also found that women are presently 20-30% MORE likely to be Promiscuous and Adulterous as a group than men.  It is easy to infer from this that a primary limitation on female Adultery and Promiscuity supporting the notion that Adultery Victims were overwhelmingly female was NOT due the the feminine "character" but  was due their lack of opportunity in prior decades.  (It's not rocket science to figure out why this turns out to be the case.)  When Paternity Testing is done, BTW, the frequency that the man the Mother claims to be the Father is in fact NOT the father is around 30-40%.     In BC thanks to NDP legislation, it matters not who the Natural Father is in Paternity suites, and the NDP and BC Government has become fully participant in BC Paternity Fraud.

More:  Issues:  Domestic Violence Scam & "Women's Studies" Propaganda
Issues:  Pizzey, Erin: Women's Shelter Scam;
Issues:  "Women's Shelter" Gulags:  Lesbian Brainwashing & Seduction Camps
Issues:  Cools, Senator Anne: Lying Lawyers;
News:  Liberal Hedy Fry / Status of Women (SOW):
Issues:  Pedophiles Fear Dads;
Issuess:  False Accusations;
Issues:  Domestic Violence Fraud
Issues:  Child Trafficking by Public Officers & Judges

Gender Inequality in Alberta Debate <Maurice Vellacott, MP:  Equal Parenting Bill C-422>

Gender Inequality in Alberta Debate on Dec 10, 2009 - Part 1/3

More:  Issues: Vellacott, Maurice, MP:  Equal Parenting Advocate, Bill C-422;
About:  Equal Parenting How-Tos, "Three Layer Cake";
Issues:  Kruk, Edward:  "Child Custody, Access & Parental Responsibility";
Issues:  Hill, Jay MP for presumptive joint custody on divorce, Bill C-245;
Issues:  Toews, Vic:  Age of Consent;
 Issues:  Pizzey, Erin: Women's Shelter Scam;
Issues:  "Women's Shelter" Gulags:  Lesbian Brainwashing & Seduction

Equal Parenting Trek - 2014

MP Maurice Vellacott Equal Shared Parenting Bill, C-560

EP Trek is an annual "Progressive Convention" of EP Roundups starting in June in US & September in CA

equal parenting trek - Google Search;
equal parenting trek - Google Video;

Equal Shared Parenting Bill, C-560 - Google Search

PETITION:  Bill C-560 Divorce Law reform Equal Parenting on CCS ADVOCACY CANADA

"The amendments in Bill C-560 .. direct the courts .. to make equal shared parenting  .. the presumptive arrangement in the best interests of the child, except in proven cases of abuse or neglect"

".. 78% of Canadians support equal shared parenting, with a high of 86% support in Quebec. More women than men support equal shared parenting, at 78%. Among supporters of major political parties, about 78% of Conservatives support equal shared parenting, 76% of the NDP and 80% of Liberals."

"Equal shared parenting has come to be viewed as a range of generally 35-50% residential parenting by each parent. It does not impose a strict 50-50 residential arrangement on parents."

EP Trek 2014 CONTACTS

maurice.vellacott.a1@parl.gc.ca
bkay@videotron.ca
info@equalparenting-bc.ca
Shawn Tedder on Linkedin;

First executed by Arnie Hein, the Equal Parenting Trek is our attempt to create a "Progressive Convention" of geographically sequenced Equal Parenting Roundups


More: Equal Parenting Trek - 2014:  MP Maurice Vellacott Equal Shared Parenting Bill, C-560
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;
EP Trek Generic Calendar;
About:  Equal Parenting How To's:  Three Layer Cake;
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting;
EP Trek Generic Calendar:
Issues:  Kinship Families or Grandparents raising Children::
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting

Maurice Vellacott, MP:  Equal Parenting, Supremacy of Parliament

Equal Parenting Bill C-422, Supremacy of Parliament v CBA

Maurice Vellacott - Google Search;
Maurice Vellacott - Google Video

Bill C-422 - Google Search;
Bill C-422 - Google Video 

"The Saskatchewan MP drew criticism for suggestions he made .. that Supreme Court judges play god with the law. 

"Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin "herself actually said .. there's some mystical kind of power that comes over them by which everything they ever decreed is not to be questioned and they actually have these discerning and almost prophetic abilities  ..   and they take on almost these godlike powers," "< McLachlin> said that herself. I didn't say that."

BILL C-422: An Act to amend the Divorce Act (equal parenting) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts

2009-06-16  Maurice Vellacott's Prepared Statement for Press Conference

EP Trek Calendar

Equal Parenting Trek - 1998;
Equal Parenting Trek - 2001
Equal Parenting Trek - 2005
Equal Parenting Trek - 2006
Equal Parenting Trek - 2007
Equal Parenting Trek - 2008
Equal Parenting Trek - 2009


More:  Issues: Vellacott, Maurice, MP:  Equal Parenting Advocate, Bill C-422;
About:  Equal Parenting How-Tos, "Three Layer Cake";
Issues:  Kruk, Edward:  "Child Custody, Access & Parental Responsibility";
Issues:  Hill, Jay MP for presumptive joint custody on divorce, Bill C-245;
Issues:  Toews, Vic:  Age of Consent;
 Issues:  Pizzey, Erin: Women's Shelter Scam;
Issues:  "Women's Shelter" Gulags:  Lesbian Brainwashing & Seduction

Equal Parenting Trek - 2013

Earl Silverman, RIP April, 2013, Barbara Kay, New Organization of Leading Women

EP Trek is an annual "Progressive Convention" of EP Roundups starting in June in US & September in CA

Earl Silverman: In Memoriam

equal parenting trek - Google Search;
equal parenting trek - Google Video;

First executed by Arnie Hein, the Equal Parenting Trek is our attempt to create a "Progressive Convention" of geographically sequenced Equal Parenting Roundups

Equal shared parenting — a minimum of 40% of time spent with children by each parent — has been federal Conservative party policy in theory since 2002,



EP Trek Calendar

Equal Parenting Trek - 1998;
Equal Parenting Trek - 2001
Equal Parenting Trek - 2005
Equal Parenting Trek - 2006
Equal Parenting Trek - 2007
Equal Parenting Trek - 2008
Equal Parenting Trek - 2009
Equal Parenting Trek - 2010
Equal Parenting Trek - 2011
Equal Parenting Trek - 2012
Equal Parenting Trek - 2013

More:  About:  EPT =  Equal Parenting Trek;
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;
EP Trek Generic Calendar;
About:  Equal Parenting How To's:  Three Layer Cake;
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting;
EP Trek Generic Calendar:
Issues:  Kinship Families or Grandparents raising Children::
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting

Earl Silverman, RIP April, 2013

Domestic Abuse against Men, Men’s Alternative Safe House (MASH)

earl silverman, mash - Google Search;
earl silverman, mash - Google Video

Men’s Alternative Safe House (MASH)


More:  Issues:  Silverman, Ear, RIP April, 2013:  Domestic Abuse against Men;
Issues:  Barbara Kay,  National Post;
Testimonials:  Prior, Byron: Sexual Abuse;
News:  Mount Cashel Orphanage;

Barbara Kay, National Post


Barbara Kay - Google Search;
Barbara Kay - Google Video

"over 70% of Canadians want a presumption of shared or equal parenting in law"

"Leading Women for Shared Parenting is an organization whose supporters recognize Children Need Both Parents"

"Equal shared parenting — a minimum of 40% of time spent with children by each parent — has been federal Conservative party policy in theory since 2002"

"In Ontario alone, the names Cornwall, Prescott, and London became synonymous with "respectable" pedophile rings -- lawyers, doctors, police officers and Catholic clergymen -- that for decades preyed on society's most vulnerable boys."

It is clear to any disinterested observer .. hat almost the only opponents to Equal Parenting are misandric ideologues .. financially invested in the Family Court system .. a drastic reduction in revenue.

2013-04-03   Barbara Kay: Fair play for divorced dads

2012-10-17  Barbara Kay: One father’s fight <Lucien Khodeir's> for gender-neutral justice

2011-06-15  Denying fathers their rights, Barbara Kay, National Post;

2010-01-21 The Domestic Violence Industry’s War on Men

2007-09-26 Forgetting the male victims of child abuse, Barbara Kay

2006-06-14  Welcome to the matriarchy, Barbara Kay;




More.... Issues:  Barbara Kay,  National Post;
Testimonials:  Prior, Byron: Sexual Abuse;
News:  Mount Cashel Orphanage;
News: Southin, Mary: BC Judge backs Pedophilia;
News:  Ramsay, Judge David BC Judge & Pedophile
News:  Orr, Judge David:  Protection of Pedophiles in Public Service;
Testimonials:   Earle, Shane: Mount Cashel Orphange;
Testimonials: Samson, Pierre:  Duplessis Orphans

Rachel Alexander, of Leading Women for Shared Parenting

More:  Issues:  Alexander,  Rachel:  Leading Women for Shared Parenting;
Home:  Equal Parenting Trek 2013

Dean Clifford, Freeman

dean clifford, freeman - Google Search;
dean clifford, freeman - Google Videos

 

More:  Issues:  Clifford Dean:   Freeman
Issues:  Menard, Robert: "Bursting Bubbles of Government Deception";
Issues:  Common Law Perverted by Activist Judges and Legal Oligarchy;
Issues:  Shrout, Winston: Solutions in Commerce / Common Law;
Funstuff:  Hovind, Kent:  NWO, Straw Man Redemption;
Issues:  "Judicial Interpretation" to pervert Statutes of Parliament
Issues:  Still, Bill:  "Money Masters", "Secret of Oz";
Issues:  Grignon, Paul: "Money As Debt"
Issues: Griffin, G. Edward, Jeckle Island;
Issues:  Riplinger, Gail:  Westcott & Hort's New Age Bibles;
Funstuff:  Smith, Barry:  Evangelist, NWO
;
Issues:  Judicial Activism is Breach of Trust;
Issues:  Judicial Globalization is Treason

 

Edward Kruk, PhD: 

"Child Custody, Access & Parental Responsibility"

Edward Kruk, ubc - Google Search Edward Kruk, ubc - Google Videos

.. research has shown that conflict is reduced in equal parenting households, from the perspective of both children (Fabricius, 2011) and parents (Bauserman, 2012)

www.edwardkruk.com/

Road Kill Radio Show #70 Download Part 1, Ed Kruk;

More:  Issues:  Kruk, Edward:  "Child Custody, Access & Parental Responsibility";
Issues: Vellacott, Maurice, MP:  Equal Parenting Advocate, Bill C-422;
About:  Equal Parenting How-Tos, "Three Layer Cake"

Maurice Vellacott, MP:  Equal Parenting Bill C-422

Equal Parenting Bill C-422, Supremacy of Parliament

Maurice Vellacott - Google Search;
Maurice Vellacott - Google Video

Bill C-422 - Google Search;
Bill C-422 - Google Video 

More:  Issues: Vellacott, Maurice, MP:  Equal Parenting Advocate, Bill C-422;
About:  Equal Parenting How-Tos, "Three Layer Cake";

Issues:  Kruk, Edward:  "Child Custody, Access & Parental Responsibility";
Issues:  Hill, Jay MP for presumptive joint custody on divorce, Bill C-245;
Issues:  Toews, Vic:  Age of Consent;

 Issues:  Pizzey, Erin: Women's Shelter Scam;
Issues:  "Women's Shelter" Gulags:  Lesbian Brainwashing & Seduction

Lucien Khodeir

Canada / SOW’s Child-Support Guidelines Which Cause $100M Monthly in Damages

lucien khodeir - Google Search
lucien khodeir - Google Video

"Canada’s Guidelines .. ignore the child-support recipient’s income, .. child-support payor’s directly-paid child-related expenses .. do not permit Canada’s Guidelines to ignore either parent’s income or to ignore either parent’s child-related expenses."

"Canadians pay $200 million monthly in child support according to Canada’s Child-Support Guidelines of which $100 million is above what may reasonably be considered to be a fair amount. The unfair content of child support paid according to Canada’s Guidelines will reach $20 billion by the end of 2013."

Lucien Khodeir
(905) 975-5864
Contact via Email
www.childrenwith2homes.ca





More:  Issues:  Khodeir, Lucien:  Child-Support Guidelines;
Testimonials:  Charles Bruce Vs Judicial Racketeers:  Debtors Prison;
News:  Themis Ltd. & Themis Inc.
 News:  Maximus Inc;
Issues:  Imputed Income;
Issues:  Poofy Judges;
Issues:  FMEP = Family Maintenance Enforcement Program;;
Meetup:  EPT-w28-Denver-CO: Coalition for Equal Parenting, Working EP Roundup;

Kari Simpson & Terry O'Neal's "RoadKill Radio"

Tuesday Call-In show to combat attacks on the Natural Family, Parental Rights, Freedom of Speech, Common Law..

Kari Simpson, RoadKill Radio - Google Search;

Kari Simpson, RoadKill Radio - Google Videos

Kari Simpson is executive director of the Citizen's Research Institute in Langley, B.C.  CALL IN:  (604) 525-4167;  Tuesdays,  7:30-9:30 PM;  EMAIL THE SHOW LIVE:  Roadkillradio@live.ca 

www.roadkillradio.com
RoadKill Radio on Vimeo

More:  Issues:  Simpson, Kari;
Issues:  Barbara Kay,  National Post
News:  Simms,  Mary Woo: BC HRT;
News:  BC Human Rights Tribunal;
Issues:  Corren Agreement;
About:  EPT =  Equal Parenting Trek;
About:  EPR = Equal Parenting Roundups;
EP Trek Generic Calendar;
About:  Equal Parenting How To's:  Three Layer Cake;
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting;
EP Trek Generic Calendar:
Issues:  Kinship Families or Grandparents raising Children::
About:  Grandparents in Equal Parenting

Beverley McLachlin:  Canada's Treasonous Chief Judge


McLachlin for Judicial Globalization & Judicial Displacement of Parliament

beverley mclachlin - Google Search;
beverley mclachlin - Google Video



Here we find our Canadian Chief Justice committing her  Breach of Trust of a Public Officer, admitting her  TREASONOUS  displacement of  the Canadian Supremacy of Parliament, and multiplying her crimes by lobbying other Canadian Judges to build with her an International Cabal of Globalist Judges by which to dominate Parliaments, usurping their powers of law making, delegated IN TRUST to PARLIAMENT by the Crown.


CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS IN CANADA!

2001-08-06  NICHOLSON:  "High Crimes in British Columbia"   Protected Pedophile Rings in BC.mp3

2003-08-xx social-worker-grabbed-my-penis-threatened.mp3;

2008-09-16 PRIOR: Why wont anyone hear me Mission Unstoppable.mp3;

We APPEAL to her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to inquire into "Justice" Beverly McLachlin's conduct in exercising her Duties in Canadian Courts.  We request her Majesty make what enquiries are necessary to determine the extent of  McLachlin's wrongdoings, and advise, if she would be so kind, our Prime Minister of her findings and wishes.

More:  News:  Beverly McLachlin:  Canada's Treasonous Chief Judge;
Issues:  Cromwell, Oliver: Parliamentary Supremacy;
Issues: Supremacy of Parliament;
Issues:  "Judicial Interpretation" to pervert Statutes of Parliament;
Issues: Judicial Globalization is Treason

Charles Bruce, Tax Lawyer Vs Judicial Racketeers:

Sent to Debtors Prison for Non-Payment of Extortionist's demands

Charles Bruce, colorado - Google Search;
charles bruce, colorado - Google Video

First Week In | Cut Off from the World;
First Week In | Visitors on Video;

"All FMEP Members are lawyers.  Their job is to enforce Orders, so also participate in sale of properties, bankruptcies & foreclosures,"

"the Homosexual  fraction of the Law Societies & Judiciaries is "forty-something" percent"

"These FALSE ACCUSATIONS are often made with the overt or covert complicity of their lawyers. They are a lethal weapon in the business of parental alienation. They are a tool for achieving sole custody of children and creating fatherlessness."




More:  Testimonials:  Charles Bruce Vs Judicial Racketeers:  Debtors Prison;
News:  Themis Ltd. & Themis Inc.
 News:  Maximus Inc;
Issues:  Imputed Income;
Issues:  Poofy Judges;
Issues:  FMEP = Family Maintenance Enforcement Program;;
Meetup:  EPT-w28-Denver-CO: Coalition for Equal Parenting, Working EP Roundup;


 


     
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