Custody Programs
“Research indicates that children raised in single parent families are more likely than children raised in two parent families (with both biological parents) to do poorly in school, have emotional and behavioral problems, become teenage parents, and have high poverty-level incomes. In hopes of improving the long-term outlook for children in single-parent families, federal, state, and local governments, along with public and private organizations are supporting programs and activities that promote the financial and personal responsibility of noncustodial fathers to their children and increase the participation of fathers in the lives of their children. These programs have come to be known as Responsible Fatherhood programs” Congressional Research Service report “Fatherhood Initiatives: Connecting Fathers to Their Children” written by Carmen Solomon-Fears, dated October 22, 2013

Program prototypes - Reference: HHS report “Catalog of Research: Programs for Low-Income Fathers,” written by Mathematica Policy Research, December 2011

  1. Overdue Support (arrears)
    • Dad owes accumulated support
    • Given waiver, charge off, modification for taking classes offered by fatherhood program
    • Given custody help by case manager and/or contracted attorney, legal workshops, mediator
    • Given incentives to attend classes - $25 walmart gift cards, bus tokens
    • Referral to job placement – out of 76 programs, many with numerous sites, only one offered training (HVAC)
    • Examples: Texas Fragile Families; Maryland Resonsible Fatherhood Project; Partners for Fragile Families (numerous States); Devoted Dads (Washington State); Strengthening Families Through Stronger Fathers Initiative (New York State); Young Unwed Fathers Pilot Project (numerous states)

  2. Incarcerated Fathers
    • Crimes include: drugs, robbery, assault including the mother
    • Given a reduced sentence for taking curriculum created by NFI & NCPL (Nat’l Fatherhood Initiative and Nat’l Community Partnership Leadership)
    • Given support waiver/modification
    • Moms ordered to bring children for visits
    • Given reintegration services - custody help by case manager and/or contracted attorney, legal workshops, mediator

  3. Marriage Promotion – Works with above programs to encourage marriage Family Centers use funds from Foster Care given gifts & activity free passes

  4. Access/Visitation - Reference: 2013 Congressional Research Service report “Fatherhood Initiatives: Connecting Fathers to Their Children”

    • Mediation
    • Counseling
    • Parental education
    • Development of parenting plans
    • Visitation enforcement
    • Monitored visitation, neutral drop-off and pickup, supervised visitation
    • Development of guidelines for visitation and custody

    • In FY 2008 about 85,000 individuals received services.
    • Individuals were referred to services by the courts, child support enforcement or welfare agencies.
    • In FY 2005, approx. 32,174 fathers received access and visitation services, 21,874 got more custody. Ref. AV Jurisdictional Profile.
    • Litigation and court service providers used to give Dads custody (mathematical fact: take from Moms)
    • Designed to reduce Dads support obligation See Funding OCSE
    • Runs out of court administration in conjunction with Support Court
    • Upper-income fathers profit most
    • Lawyers get clients services by court order
    • Deny abuse, pathologize & demonize Mom (make her abuser)
    • Contracts with support/domestic relations court not disclosed to Mothers, who attend these sessions unaware of the fatherhood custody mandate.
    • Not required to adhere to ethical standards; State custody laws
    • Easily rig cases - Deny due process – provide false evidence – reports witness –deny real proof
    • Force Mom and kids to live under control of fathers - Mothers who resist will be eliminated - children are made Motherless.