logo for the website of Fathers for Life
Fatherlessness, the lack of natural fathers in children's lives
| Home | In The News | Our Blog | Contact Us | RSS button | Share


Fathers for Life Site-Search

2013 04 15: Symantec (makers and distributors of Norton Antivirus) and O2 now filter/block the website of Fathers for Life and *BOTH* of its affiliated blogs. Click for details.


 
 Site Map (very large file)
 Table of Contents
 Activism
 Children—Our most valued assets?
 Educating Our Children for the Global Gynarchia
 Child Support
 Civil Rights & Social Issues
 Families
 Family Law
 Destruction of Families
 Fatherhood
 Fatherlessness
 Divorce Issues
 Domestic Violence
 Feminism
 Gay Issues
 Hate, Hoaxes and Propaganda
 Health
 Help Lines for Men
 History
 Humour
 Law, Justice and The Judiciary
 Mail to F4L
 Men's Issues
 Suicide
 The Politics of "Sex"
 Our Most Popular Pages
 Email List
 Links
 References - Bibliography

You are visitor

since June 19, 2001

Be notified of
page updates
it's private
powered by
ChangeDetection

BADGE
 of
RECOGNITION

censored-stamp

Yes, the website for Fathers for Life and its affiliated blog are being slandered and censored. (Click for Details)

If you are a fathers-rights or pro-family activist, then it is quite likely that your website or blog is being, slandered and censored, too. (Click to check that out)

Back to:

Advice to Men
 
 

Australian government bureaucracy aids, abets and actively participates in child kidnapping

From the collection of "Tales from beyond the Outer Limits of Law and Order"

This is what happens when a man-hating government bureaucracy and collaborating feminist family-court judges flaunt the law with impunity:

"[After the kidnapped children had been found and secured in Switzerland]...the Swiss judge who personally escorted the children to the aeroplane expected that the children would be returned to their father after a short while. However, it soon became clear that the [Australian] Department for Community Development did not agree with the court and would not support the return of the children to their father. The department did not develop a reunification plan for the family, and nor did it develop a schedule for handover to the father, who has been allowed only four hours a week of strictly supervised access since April 2005, although more recently a more liberal overnight contact arrangement has been calculated.

In the first week of July, amendments were made to the federal Family Law Act. Those amendments were made just days after the family court judgment in this case. Amazingly, just days before the amended federal law came into effect, Justice Penny of the Family Court of Western Australia ordered that the children be returned to their mother [the kidnapper] in Switzerland. It seems that decision was made on that date quite deliberately to ensure that Mr Wood could not benefit from the new shared parenting, or father-friendly, components of the amended Family Law Act. Although there are a number of serious concerns about the courtís decision, I am focusing today on the departmentís role in this matter...."


,
who has been a shining light in the darkness for Russell
Wood and his family. An email commending Dan for his efforts to date would
be all that is needed at this dire moment.

This case is one of the greatest travesty's of justice we have seen and we
have seen many. The two Australian children are being prepared for
deportation on Friday [2006 08 25].

Any immediate words of support you can email Dan to encourage his
persistence in this matter would be greatly appreciated.

Wayne Butler
Executive Secretary
Shared Parenting Council of Australia


From the 2006 08 24 Hansard of the Legislative Assembly of the Parliament of Western Australia:

RUSSELL WOOD AND MAYA WOOD-HOSIG - CHILD CUSTODY CASE

Grievance


MR D.F. BARRON-SULLIVAN (Leschenault) [10.00 am]: My grievance is to the Minister for Community Development and is on behalf of the two children of Mr Russell Wood and Mrs Maya Wood-Hosig. Both their 10-year-old-daughter and eight-year-old son are Australian citizens. Both were born in Western Australia. Mr Wood and his wife split up, and the custody of their children became a matter for the Family Court of Western Australia. At the time both parents lived in Western Australia, and both had access to the children. A few years ago, Mrs Wood-Hosig abducted the children, and, using false passports, took the children to Switzerland. That was her second attempt to abduct the children. After applications were made to The Hague, the children were located in April 2003. However, the mother then hid the children from the Swiss authorities. After the mother refused to cooperate and return to Australia, the Wood children were eventually detained by the Swiss authorities and placed in an institutionalised home in Switzerland for a year until they could be returned to Australia.

Upon arrival in Australia, the Wood children were not returned to their father and their fatherís extended local family, as one might have expected, but were placed in the care of the Department for Community Development. This arrangement, which was supposed to be temporary, was due to the childrenís perceived problems with the English language. I am informed that the Swiss judge who personally escorted the children to the aeroplane expected that the children would be returned to their father after a short while. However, it soon became clear that the Department for Community Development did not agree with the court and would not support the return of the children to their father. The department did not develop a reunification plan for the family, and nor did it develop a schedule for handover to the father, who has been allowed only four hours a week of strictly supervised access since April 2005, although more recently a more liberal overnight contact arrangement has been calculated.

In the first week of July, amendments were made to the federal Family Law Act. Those amendments were made just days after the family court judgment in this case. Amazingly, just days before the amended federal law came into effect, Justice Penny of the Family Court of Western Australia ordered that the children be returned to their mother in Switzerland. It seems that decision was made on that date quite deliberately to ensure that Mr Wood could not benefit from the new shared parenting, or father-friendly, components of the amended Family Law Act. Although there are a number of serious concerns about the courtís decision, I am focusing today on the departmentís role in this matter.

Throughout all that time, Judge Penny never met and interviewed the Wood children herself. This makes it all the more important to know the role of the officers of the Department for Community Development in this matter, what advice they gave the judge, and how they influenced the judgeís decision. Justice Penny set a deadline for the children deportation of 1 September. That is less than one week away. That means the Wood children will not even be able to spend Fatherís Day with their father here in Western Australia. The Shared Parenting Council of Australia advises that there is firm evidence that at least one, if not two, employees or consultants of the Department for Community Development, among the string of some 23 employees or consultants who have been involved in this case, have committed serious breaches of procedure. Concerns have been raised that these officers conducted a seemingly personal vendetta of revenge for allegations made about the department by Mr Wood in his mountain of affidavits.

If the ministerís department had evidence that Mr Wood had harmed his children, or posed a risk to them, this would be a valid reason to keep him at armís length from his children, or allow him only strictly supervised access. However, despite allegations from Mrs Wood-Hosig, the Family Court judge has repeatedly determined that Mr Wood has committed no offence. An officer from the Department for Community Development, Ms Gurner, told the court that the departmentís actions were because, as she put it, ďWhere there is smoke there is fire.Ē This appears to have been sole reason given by the Department for Community Development for its extraordinary actions in this matter.

Minister, was this really the basis for keeping the Wood children away from their parent for 19 months? Was this really the reason for depriving the Wood children of direct contact with their father, except under strict supervision for just four hours a week? Was this why the Wood children were shuffled between six foster homes rather than allowed to enjoy the love and comfort of their natural parent? Why did the Department for Community Development, or the judge, never explore the option of bringing the mother back to Australia so that the children could be brought up in a shared parenting environment, with ongoing and direct access to both parents? I understand that the department placed the children in foster care largely because it believed they did not have an adequate command of the English language. I have in my hands a DVD of the daughterís recent birthday party. It shows clearly both children thoroughly enjoying themselves, with lots of friends and extended family members, and - guess what - they both speak fluent English!

The first priority in matters such as this must always be to protect the children. If there is indisputable evidence that a parent has harmed a child or poses a risk to a child, or if there is another overriding, serious and proven concern for a childís safety or welfare, every caution must be taken. Conversely, in the absence of such evidence or any reasonable explanation, and considering the courtís rejection of such allegations, there can be only one conclusion. That is that officers from the Department for Community Development deliberately contrived to prevent Mr Wood from developing a normal relationship and strong parental bonds with his children in order to jeopardise his chances of gaining fair access to his children through the Family Court. In so doing, the actions of these departmental officers have caused two children, both Australian-born citizens, to be taken to another country, far from their father, and most likely never to see him again in person during the remainder of their childhood years.

Yesterday I gave the minister six questions about this matter. The ministerís answers will enable us to determine whether the department acted properly, or whether its officers acted in a biased, destructive and vindictive way. If the latter is the case, I strongly suggest that the minister has no option but to suspend the officers and psychologists concerned and instigate a thorough and independent investigation of his departmentís handling of this case. I ask that the minister answer the six questions, and then provide further advice as he sees fit with regard to this matter.

I have a letter from Senator David Johnson to the federal Minister for Justice and Customs calling for action to be taken in relation to the passport fraud. A lot of people hope that ultimately that will lead to extradition proceedings. I seek leave to lay that letter on the table for the remainder of this dayís sitting.

[The paper was tabled for the information of members.]

MR D.A. TEMPLEMAN (Mandurah - Minister for Community Development) [10.07 am]: I thank the member for Leschenault for raising this grievance with me. The member has highlighted a number of issues and concerns. I am a little concerned that the member has also identified certain people by name. I need to highlight at this point that, as the member mentioned in his grievance, a decision had been made by the Family Court of Western Australia that the children be returned to their mother in Switzerland. This decision has been appealed by the fatherís legal representatives. Accordingly, my advice is that I cannot go into too much specific detail about the complexities of the case - this is a complex case, as I am sure the member appreciates - because that appeal is still before the court. My advice is that the judge has made it very clear that until she makes her final decision, the issue that she is considering should not be a matter for public discussion. I acknowledge the seriousness of this case, so I am not trying to -

Mr D.F. Barron-Sullivan: I am well aware of what Justice Penny has said. She has said that she does not want this matter to go to the media. She is obviously hoping the whole thing is kept quiet before the kids are taken off to Switzerland. However, no court proceeding is under way at the moment, so that does not prevent this Parliament from discussing this matter.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: I am very mindful that I do not want to prejudice any decision that may be made by the Family Court in this matter, particularly as it has now been appealed.

This case is an example of the complexities that occur when, for whatever reason, relationships break down. This is a particularly difficult case because, when this relationship broke down, one of the parents decided to go to another country. Conflicts that arise between parents muddy the situation, and the animosity between partners can cause a great deal of grief for not only their relationship but also, of course, the most important people in this case, the children.

The new Children and Community Services Act emphasises that decisions about children must be made in their best interests, and sometimes the desires and aspirations of the parents conflict with the needs of the children. The new legislation also makes it clear - I need to highlight this to the member and others in this place - that the voices of the children should be heard when decisions are being made about their lives. The legislation contains provisions that ensure that that happens.

Mr D.F. Barron-Sullivan: Can I point out that that is an incredibly important point, yet the justice of the Family Court never met or interviewed these children. That is why it is so important to understand the actions of your department, because those actions influence this case like nothing else. Had the judge spoken to the children, we may have seen a different situation.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: That is true, but it is not my responsibility nor the responsibility of the department to direct the judgeís determination. The member is aware that under our legal system it is the judgeís determination and direction that has to be carried out under the law.

I understand the memberís point that the judge - in his view and the view of others - should have attempted to discuss the specific issues of this case with the parents. I do not have a great problem with that point of view. However, in the context of this case, the department could not have directed the judge. When this matter comes to appeal recommendations will be made.

Mr D.F. Barron-Sullivan: We are running out of time. There is one key question: does your department have evidence that Mr Wood posed a risk to the children or that he has harmed them? That is crucial.

Mr D.A. TEMPLEMAN: When I received the memberís question yesterday, I sought advice. Because of the complexities of this matter and because, to be honest, a number of issues have been highlighted to me, particularly in regard to the children and their responses, this is a very serious case. I take very seriously what I need to do for the member to ensure that the memberís questions are answered. I will organise an immediate briefing on this case as a matter of priority. I will make sure that one of my staff attends that briefing so that that person can respond to me directly. I will ensure that a senior manager of the department also attends that briefing. The member has highlighted the fatherís concerns specifically, and he must have his interests heard. I will organise that briefing for the member as soon as possible.

Mr D.F. Barron-Sullivan: Thank you, minister; that is much appreciated.

 


White RoseThe White Rose
Thoughts are Free

__________________
Posted 2006 08 28