maui_angelgroup_mothers_day_march_judgesPRESS RELEASE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Kahului, Maui - On Mother's Day (Sunday, May 8th) a group of domestic violence survivor moms, protective parents and their supporters will be gathering at the corner of the Kahului Kmart parking lot (at the intersection of Haleakala Highway and Dairy Road) from 9:00am – 12:00pm for a sign waving / peaceful demonstration to call the public's attention to the family court crisis where an estimated 58,000 children per year are being placed in the custody of or have unsupervised visitation with the parent who has either abused them or their protective parent. 1

In Hawaii, this is in contradiction to Hawaii Revised Statute 571-46 (9) that says it is not in a child's best interests to be placed in either sole or joint custody with a perpetrator of family violence, but many of the moms who will be at the Kahului Kmart on Sunday will be there precisely because their children are being withheld from them – even on Mother's Day – by the parent who abused them. For these survivors of abuse, there are no cards, flowers, brunches, leis, hugs or kisses on Mother's Day – only pictures, sorrow and memories.

This event will be ending just as a candlelight vigil and speak-out will begin in front of the White House in Washington, DC (at 6:00m Eastern Standard Time) sponsored by the Mothers of Lost Children where mothers and advocates from around the country will be calling attention to the very same issue of protective parents losing custody of their children in family court and child welfare proceedings. See coverage of last year's White House Mother's Day demonstration.

On Monday, May 9th, domestic violence survivors moms, protective parents and their supporters will be gathering outside of the State Capitol in Sacramento, CA calling attention to the same.

"What folks don't understand is that violence and abuse don't end just because the victim flees the abusive relationship; if the victim has children in-common with her abuser, the violence and abuse actually remain unless THIRD PARTIES (such as the family court, CWS, the police, community members, friends, family, etc.) intervene to hold the abuser solely responsible. Often it's assumed that the mere passage of time resolves all past issues of abuse, which is completely untrue. Because of the misconceptions about what domestic abuse is, those who've been designated to rectify the situation may inadvertently contribute to its ongoing perpetration. Someone who would withhold a child from a protective parent on Mother's Day proves their abusiveness but this goes unrecognized because the abusers will claim that these survivor moms are mentally ill and have willfully abandoned their children" says Dara Carlin, a Domestic Violence Survivor Advocate from Oahu who will be participating in the Kahului event.

In the meantime, Hawaii state legislators such as Representative John Mizuno, Representative George Fontaine, Representative Cynthia Thielen, Senator Mike Gabbard and Senator Suzanne Chun-Oakland are working diligently to try to correct the errors and mistakes made by the family court and child welfare systems in domestic violence cases.

For more information about this event, contact Dara Carlin at (808) 218-3457.

 

To learn more about the family court crisis in Hawaii, go to www. AngelGroup.org.

1 The Leadership Council


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