Fathers and Families member John Hribernick published a letter in the Seattle Times called A presumption of joint custody. Hribernick writes:
It is encouraging that some child-welfare agencies “get it,” but the Noah Kirkland case in Oregon demonstrates that such agencies too often don’t get it at all ["Supporting the bond between child, parent," Opinion, June 28].
Your Monday editorial states “emotional bonds between parent and child are appropriately strong and ought to be supported.” Another arm of the state, family court, separates children from the parents who love them as a matter of routine, without ever establishing any wrongdoing by the noncustodial parent. This parent is often the child’s father who, though he longs for substantial time with his child(ren) after a divorce, ends up a visitor by court decree.
I belong to Fathers and Families, a court-reform organization that advocates the presumption of joint custody when parents divorce. It’s as simple an idea as that set forth in your editorial — every effort should be made to preserve the existing bonds between parent and child.
I hope the editors at The Times will also support “keeping families intact” when it comes to family-court reforms that advocate that no child should be denied equal contact with willing and able parents.