Discrimination in Australian courts

Letter received by yet another victim of the Australian Family Law Court: received on the 7th July 2003

It has been a well known fact that Australian fathers have been victims of the Family Law Court for decades.

This is not only a crime against fathers, but also their children, and Australian Society.

In the tradition of Mediaman, we expose the truth, regardless of how unpopular that may be with some individuals and politicians.

The bellow letter, in uncensored form, was received by Mediaman, from Giles, who is looking for justice. Only some spelling corrections have been made.

To the editor

My name is Giles. I'm writing to you to ask for assistance in a human rights matter.

The subject matter is the current discrimination fathers face in the Family Court .

Without sounding 'over the top' children are still losing their rights, as too are fathers, grand parents of the children and in my son's case his great grand mother as well.

The situation fathers face is very much the equal of the sexist attitudes women have faced for many years. The situation is equal to racial discrimination that black people have faced and had to fight against for a good many years. It could be argued that fathers shouldn't have equal rights to father their children.

On this point fathers are being condemned before they start.

The task of parenting a child is made much more difficult and has greater detrimental effects on children when a father is expected to be able to pick up his child on every second weekend, and expected to know how the child has developed over that time particularly when the child is very young or at school.

I am writing to ask for media coverage on court cases that show in a positive light that fathers do care and current legislation is detrimental to the children of this country.

Refugee children are kept in places like Woomera on the premises that the children are better of with their parents but at the same time not allowing children outside detention centers to be with their fathers without imposing a prison like access regime.

Fathers who are dis-enfranchised from their parental role with their children suffer very badly from grief , resentment and frustration .In many cases a father can't even entertain the thought of going to court and fighting for their and the child's rights as the government gives women $10,000 to fight against the father at the beginning.

At this point I would also say its not only the right of child and father but the responsibility of the father to be there for the child rather than 'getting out of ' any responsibility for educating the child and the costs involved with that.

In my situation -and its not everyone's situation - I was lied to and used as a sperm donor. Myself and my family have been systematically removed from the relationship and completely shut out of knowing the well being of my child while in the womb , the birth and the first few months of my son's life.

One and a half years on from the birth, the mother is still fighting me.

I am 50% of my son yet I get 2.5 hours a fortnight access to him , I travel 250kms round trip to see him and the lawyers and government seem to think that I have the best deal I'm going to get because of his age (without me he wouldn't be alive to begin with).

The lawyers' probity is are compromised by not wanting to give up the power they have including the huge amounts of money that are accumulated by the revolving door to their offices ;meanwhile the governments seem to be indifferent to the perception that they are contributing to the fatherless state of some children and the suicides that occur, not to mention that they are throwing away huge amounts of tax payers money on useless child support systems that cause even more stress to both parents.

The system puts the government between child and parent and represents a travesty of justice to the parents who want to be their children .The system that should be in place is, in my belief that ,after the first twelve months of life a child should have equal time with both parents and should only be diverted if one of the parents doesn't want the 50% access agreement or such contact in inimical to the child's interests.

Surnames should be hyphenated unless agreed to otherwise in mediation. If a child spends 50% time with each parent then child support becomes less necessary as does the pension on the level that is currently paid as both parents have the ability to work at least part time. The cost of clothing the child is split and the resentment of both parents dissipates somewhat as the right to be with ones child is not lost completely as happens now.

Child support only becomes an issue if one of the parents doesn't want the standard 50% contact. The child will benefit from the joy a parent has when purchasing toys etc for the child rather than the resentment occasioned by the heartache associated with having to go through the court cases and the stress on the child as it watches it parents destroy each other and, if nothing else, cause massive upheaval in a child's life because the court discriminates against the father.

Because the system doesn't work the child loses out. Mothers are constantly losing out as well where fathers don't do the right thing by their child.

It is my opinion that the death rates of parents are directly related to a legal situation that should be made fair for the majority then reviewed from that point to accommodate the minority and the different amounts of involvement that parenting brings.

The obligations should be set evenly between both parents to begin with. Extensive short access should be accessible to fathers until the first birthday of a child's life (this is to accommodate the importance of breast feeding and sleeps) after that time, a father should have 50% access, including when the child goes to school. The courts wouldn't be clogged as much. Mums and Dads wouldn't have the crippling expenses that the lawyers and courts exact on both parties. Mediation wouldn't be about fighting for power, it would be about giving up time to go to work and if both parents were part time workers rather than women having to stay home and dads being thought of as just money earners .

I would rather the reward of giving to my child than paying the living costs of a woman whom betrayed me and stole something I consider sacred- LIFE……

If the government only thinks about money then the above system would decrease the child support inconsistencies , work loads would be halved, parent pensions would diminish, murders and domestic violence would decrease, and the majority of children's lives wouldn't be so badly effected ie; mental abuse would be less and probably cases of adolescent crimes etc would decrease, children wouldn't need to live with the other parent at age twelve because they would already have the best of both worlds.

There are always downers but I am sure that the positives far out-way the negatives.

Respectfully, Giles


Editors note: I am certain too many of us have heard of this kind of situation before.

I ask, how many of us know of a case like Giles'? Unfortunately, likely most of us have.

My late father had problems with the Australian Family Court also. This is not coincidence.

There are inherent problems in the Family Law Court of Australia, and when "the system" doesn't work, and people take things into their own hands, some morons wonder why!

All most people want in life is a fair shake, and the Family Law Court doesn't apparently know much about fairness.

If you know of a situation like Giles, please try to give them support. God knows they could do with it - they don't seem to get much help from Australia's "legal system".

If you know of any resources that may be able to assist father like Giles, please send them to us.

You read it here first on Mediaman. Now lets see who else gives this a run.


Lone Fathers Association of Australia

Australian Commonwealth Government Information

Fathers After Divorce: Support Groups and website links

Men's Rights Agency - Family Law

Legal Aid: NSW

Men's Rights: Court Case Links

Dad's on the air: 2GLF 89.3FM

Men's Line Australia

Articles from a random selection of websites and newspaper websites

Fathers protest training sessions for family court "guardians", by Ed Oliver

Family court driving fathers to suicide (Scoop NZ)

Stephen Baskerville, PhD: Writings on divorce regime, family court corruption and the Governments war on fatherhood

Fathers, the Family Court and extremism: The black shirts arrive (ABC Australia - Life Matters - Radio National)

Fathers bear the brunt of gender bias in family courts, by Dianna Thompson and Glenn Sacks

Fathers in Law, Catharine Lumby examines the myths surrounding divorce, joint custody and the Family Court - The Bulletin, 2nd July 2003


"You can hold a trophy for a championship above your head, but if you have a failed relationship and your male you cant see your child except when you've been subjected to endless court cases and only if its every second weekend even if your DON BRADMAN "

"You can go to war for your country and be awarded a medal but don't think you can have your children at the ceremony unless its your weekend of access"

"You can be a top level fund raiser for charities, but you cant have 50% access rights to your children at all and if the mother doesn't want you to have weekend access every second weekend, because she's bitter about you spending all that time raising money you have to go through years of grief in court first"

"You can even work with children as a job but if your male don't think for a second you have rights
to your own children"

"Your 'x' might even have a full time job but don't think you can have access during the week, that responsibility is given to child care even if your child is in there for twelve hours the father
has no rights"

"You may even own your own home even after a breakdown in a relationship , if your male you still don't have a right to have 50% access"

"You can be a top level poli but if your male in the eye of somebody else in government you not worth anything to your own child".