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NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION | MEDIA STATEMENT
January 19, 2018


NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION REACTS TO WASHINGTON POST EDITORIAL
Shared Parenting Bills Support Judicial Discretion


Following the Washington Post’s editorial on shared parenting in Maryland, Ned Holstein, MD, Founder and Board Chair of National Parents Organization, issues the following statement:

“We applaud the Washington Post editorial board’s recognition that 'There are clear benefits to shared parenting' and appreciate their efforts to highlight the importance of this issue for millions of children. On the other hand, we must disagree with two of its assertions. The editorial states that shared parenting legislation removes judicial discretion and creates a “one-size-fits-all” child custody law. This overlooks the fact that all reputable shared parenting bills around the country preserve judicial discretion and acknowledge that shared parenting is inappropriate unless both parents are fit and there has been no domestic violence. The editorial is also concerned that shared parenting legislation displaces the longstanding 'best interest of the child' standard in family law. This cannot be true, given the overwhelming research evidence that shared parenting is precisely the arrangement that is best for most children.”


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NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION | PRESS RELEASE
January 15, 2018

NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION URGES VIRGINIA LAWMAKERS TO MOVE SHARED PARENTING FORWARD
Virginia Becomes Latest State to Consider Family Court Reform

National Parents Organization applauds Virginia lawmakers for joining the list of states considering legislation that helps children whose parents divorce or separate.

As The Washington Post reported, more than 20 states have recently considered legislation supportive of shared parenting – a child custody arrangement that seeks to maximize a child’s time as much as possible with each parent. Virginia now has a bill supportive of shared parenting for fit parents in cases without a history of domestic violence. Delegate Glenn Davis, R-House District 84, is sponsoring the bill (HB 1351).  In addition, Senator Barbara Favola, D-Senate District 31, and Senator Emmet Hanger, Jr., R-Senate District 24, are co-sponsoring a separate bill, SB 64, which would require judges to explain their child custody rulings in writing.

“Thanks to Delegate Davis, Senator Favola and Senator Hanger, the Commonwealth of Virginia has the opportunity to improve children’s educational achievements, decrease their use of drugs, give them a greater sense of security, improve their overall health and adjustment, and increase the collection rate of their child support payments without any cost to the taxpayer – all by passing shared parenting into law,” said Christian Paasch, Chair of National Parents Organization in Virginia. “With these benefits to hundreds of thousands of Virginia children in mind, we urge state lawmakers to pass these proposals in 2018. Governor Northam stated he would sign a shared parenting bill into law, so it is imperative we get joint custody bills to his desk.”

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NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION | PRESS RELEASE
January 9, 2018


NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION URGES KANSAS LAWMAKERS TO MOVE SHARED PARENTING FORWARD
Kansas Becomes Latest State to Consider Family Court Reform

National Parents Organization applauds Kansas lawmakers for joining the list of states considering legislation that helps children whose parents divorce or separate.

As The Washington Post reported, more than 20 states have recently considered legislation supportive of shared parenting – a child custody arrangement in which a child spends as close to equal time as possible with each parent. Kansas now has a pre-filed bill supportive of shared parenting for fit parents in cases without a history of domestic violence. Sen. Steve Fitzgerald, R-Leavenworth, is sponsoring the bill.

“Thanks to Sen. Fitzgerald, the state of Kansas has the opportunity to improve children’s educational achievements, decrease their use of drugs, give them a greater sense of security, increase their child support payments, and improve their overall health and adjustment without any cost to the taxpayer – all by passing shared parenting into law,” said Will Mitchell, Chair of National Parents Organization of Kansas. “With these benefits to hundreds of thousands of Kansas children in mind, we urge state lawmakers to make this proposal a top priority in 2018.”

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NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION | PRESS RELEASE
January 5, 2018

NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION HOSTS PUBLIC FORUM IN SUPPORT OF SHARED PARENTING
Michigan Joins 25 States Considering Family Court Reform

As The Washington Post recently reported, Michigan is one of more than 20 states considering legislation that seeks to move shared parenting from the exception to the norm following divorce and separation. In light of the state’s bill, National Parents Organization of Michigan invites the media and public to attend a meeting on the family court reform trend.

The details on the event:

·         6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m., Thursday, March 8, The Farmington Community Library Auditorium, 32737 W. 12 Mile Rd., Farmington Hills, Michigan 48334Michigan Family Court and Shared Parenting Public Forum” – National Parents Organization and Michigan Shared Custody host an informational meeting on shared parenting with Rep. Jim Runestad, R-White Lake, sponsor of the proposed reform, House Bill 4691


National Parents Organization stresses that the proposed legislation will make it much easier for loving parents to win “shared parenting,” a flexible arrangement in which children spend as close to equal time as possible with each parent after divorce or separation. HB 4691 has momentum because it was approved by the Michigan House of Representatives’ Judiciary Committee prior to the legislative summer break. Additionally, this fall, a poll conducted by Marketing Resource Group revealed 84 percent of Michigan voters support children receiving equal time with both parents after a divorce.

“Anyone who has been through a custody battle under the existing law knows that change is needed, and now Michigan has an historic opportunity to support legislation that research shows is what children desperately want and need – and that’s not one, but both loving parents actively involved in their lives,” said Grand Rapids mother and grandmother Linda Wright, who serves as Chair of National Parents Organization of Michigan. “I’m excited for the citizens of our state to learn more about this family friendly proposal through the upcoming events.”

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NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION |PRESS RELEASE
January 4, 2018

NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION URGES MISSOURI LAWMAKERS TO MOVE SHARED PARENTING FORWARD
New Family Court Reform Proposal Builds on 2016 Law

National Parents Organization applauds Missouri lawmakers for proposing legislation that helps children whose parents divorce or separate.

As The Washington Post reported, more than 20 states have recently considered legislation supportive of shared parenting – a child custody arrangement in which a child spends as close to equal time as possible with each parent. And Missouri has a new bill that’s supportive of shared parenting for fit parents in instances where domestic violence isn’t an issue. Rep. Kathy Swan is sponsoring the bill.

“Thanks to Representative Swan, the state of Missouri has the opportunity to improve children’s educational achievements, decrease their use of drugs, give them a greater sense of security, increase their child support payments, and improve their overall health and adjustment without any cost to the taxpayer – all by passing shared parenting into law,” said Linda Reutzel, Chair of National Parents Organization of Missouri. “With these benefits to hundreds of thousands of Missouri children in mind, we urge state lawmakers to make this proposal a top priority in 2018.”

The legislation, HB1667 and SB645, calls for a rebuttable presumption of shared parenting, meaning that the court should order the two-parent solution unless a judge has reason to believe the arrangement goes against the best interest of the child. The bill builds on the state child custody law from 2016 that encourages shared parenting. The proposal aligns with nearly 60 studies showing that most children with shared parenting benefit from the arrangement when compared to children in the primary care of just one parent (see “Recent Research” below).

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