A number of fathers recently gathered in Florida and at various venues across the nation to honor a new and unpopular holiday invented to bring attention to fathers’ rights. The day, which they have dubbed “National Fatherless Day,” occurs two days before the real Father’s Day. Men who gathered to bring attention to the Fatherless Day movement say that they are protesting against unfair family court systems.
Various studies provide evidence that children may suffer more anxiety and stress after a family court ruling favors one parent over the other. Activists are protesting for the change of family law codes in Florida and other parts of the nation in the hopes of bringing more equality to mothers and fathers when it comes to child custody, child support and alimony. According to one family law attorney, who has been in practice for approximately 30 years, more and more clients have been coming to him who want equal custody of their children. In many cases, this translates to one week and one week off parenting arrangements.
In Florida, a law that would have provided for these kinds of equal custody arrangements was not approved. Now, a number of unhappy fathers are gathering to speak out. One protestor said that divorcing parents must be careful about bringing their disagreements to court because it is possible that one of the parents could unfairly lose custody rights.
Indeed, when it comes to child custody decisions, it is preferable that parents resolve their differences outside of court wherever possible in order to avoid the risk and unpredictability of leaving such decisions in the hands of a Florida court of law. Divorce mediation may be one way that divorcing parents can reach agreement when circumstances are difficult. Nevertheless, in the case that court litigation is necessary, the matter must be handled carefully to try to ensure that both parents are equally treated under the law in the best interest of the child and/or children involved.