On 30th May 2011, the community, media and Government were outraged, when confronted by the cruelty inflicted on Australian cattle in Indonesia, and it brought immediate Government action. Within days a whole industry was closed down and a valuable export trade was stopped in its tracks.
Three days earlier on the 27th May 2011, the Government released the ABS Family Characteristics Survey 2009-10, which indicates that since 1975 almost 24% of Australians have been denied meaningful contact with their biological families, as a result of deep-rooted Family Law policy failure. Yet now one month later, we have still not seen one word in the press and there is not a sign of any community, media or Government outrage.
Instead a deafening silence greets the news of crippling emotional cruelty being inflicted on Australian children and their powerless families. It would appear the health and wellbeing of the nations' cows is much more important than the health and wellbeing of the nation's children and families.
ERROR: A link was posted here (url) but it appears to be a broken link.Family Characteristics 2009-2010 compared to 2006-07
Summary of Findings
There were a total 5.0 million children in Australia in 2009-10.
(4.8 million in 2006-07)
1. NUMBER OF CHILDREN AGED 0 TO 17, WITH PARENTS LIVING ELSEWHERE.
Just over 1 million or 21% = 1,050 000 in (2009-10)
(Just over 1 million or 22% = 1,056 000 in 2006-07)
2. NUMBER OF CHILDREN WHO SPENT HALF OR MORE NIGHTS WITH THEIR NON-CUSTODIAL PARENT = only 3%. (4% in 2006-07)
3. There were 441,000 non-custodial parents, the vast majority 81% were Fathers.
(82% in 2006-07)
Using the benchmark definition of meaningful contact to represent a child spending 20% or more nights per year with their non-custodial parent, it reveals the following disturbing result:
Of the children who had little or no meaningful contact, with their non-custodial parent.
* 45% of children never stayed overnight with their non-custodial parent.
(47% in 2006-07). This includes 24% who rarely or never saw that parent. = 472.500
* 19% of children spent less than 10% of nights with that parent.
(19% in 2006-07). = 199.500
* 15% of children spent more than 10% but less than 20% with that parent.
(14% in 2006-07). = 157.500
* Total number of children who had little or no meaningful contact with their biological non-custodial parent. (844.800 in 2006-07). = 829.500
This is a slight variation of less than 1.5% over the previous period (2006-07), calling into serious question the effectiveness of Australias 36 year old Family Laws and demonstrates the failure of our Family Courts to protect the rights and safety of the nations children, and now accumulating into affecting almost 24% of all Australians.
It indicates just 2 out of 10, or 20% of children from separated parents, continue to enjoy ongoing meaningful contact with their non-custodial parent, as per above definition of meaningful.
It also means 8 out of 10, or 80% of Australian children from separated parents, are being denied meaningful ongoing contact with their biological non-custodial parent.
As a consequence, there were 352,000 non custodial parents, who had little or no meaningful contact with their biological children living elsewhere. This in turn caused an estimated 1.5 million extended family members to also be denied meaningful contact with their biological families.
All of the above results reveal a crippling, social fallout, from deep-rooted Family Law policy failure, which raises some serious questions. If we consider the above outcome as actually being in The Best Interest of Children, then perhaps we need to urgently take a very close look at that definition.
Media contact: Peter van de Voorde - Dads on the Air, Australia June 27, 2011
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