Interview by ITV Edmonton
This document discusses child access enforcement. In Alberta, a new Child Access Enforcement Act was signed into law April 14, 2000
Child Access Enforcement Act came into effect April 14, 2000 (Formerly Alberta Bill 26)
Family Law Statutes Amendment Act (The link no longer works. For unfathomable reasons, the text of the Family Law Statutes Amendment Act is no longer available at that URL.)
An online brochure "APPLYING FOR AN ACCESS ENFORCEMENT ORDER IN THE COURT OF QUEENS BENCH" is accessible at http://www.gov.ab.ca/just/upload/courtserv/access_enforcement_order_qb.htm
History of the act. Epilog
Summary of the history of judicial- and Justice Department activism relating to Canada's Divorce Act
|On Friday, April 14, 2000, the Alberta Child Access Enforcement Act was signed into law. |
|ITV Edmonton called me and asked if I would be willing to be interviewed. Naturally, I agreed. The reporter asked me if I had a picture of my children. Of course I do, and I brought that picture to the interview. Here it is: |
From the left, in the back row, Nancy, Martin, Walther, Sue
From the left, in the front, Stephan and Patrick
(Walther was very ill and visiting at the time. Although he had actually come to Alberta to visit me, he was too weak at the time to make it to our home. I have not seen all of my children together since 1975 and Walther passed away a year after his visit to Alberta. I did see him one more time shortly before he passed away. )
|Portions of the interview were shown throughout the day, and the main segment constructed from the actual interview was shown on the early- and the late evening news. |
ITV News, Edmonton, April 14, 2000
|Lynda Steele ||Major changes in family law took effect in Alberta today. |
|Gordon Steinke ||Judges will now have more options to give parents without custody regular access to their children. Under the changes a judge can now order another visit with the child to replace the one denied, force the parent into mandatory counselling and mediation, or, in extreme cases, fine or jail the parent who refuses to give access to the child. |
95 percent of the non-custodial parents are men. Many of them say, these changes are long overdue. Graham Richardson reports:
|Clips from interviews by Graham Richardson:|
|Graham Richardson||It's one of life's deepest scars, a broken family, a bitter divorce, a fight over access to children. For years fathers have been saying, the courts ignore their rights. When mothers deny access to children, there is nowhere to turn. |
Today a new law took effect in Alberta, that may change that.
|Walter Schneider ||Let us hope that it will do something to firm up the bond between natural fathers and their children. Children need fathers, and children who have regular and firm, solid bonds with their fathers, even if their marriage is broken up, do better in society....|
|Graham Richardson||(Voice over) Years ago Walter Schneider was involved in a bitter dispute over the custody of his children. |
|Walter Schneider ||...I considered suicide -- many times -- it was hard. |
|Graham Richardson||It drove him into poverty and nearly over the edge. He speaks about it like it was yesterday. |
|Walter Schneider ||It is just like a steam roller coming down the road, somebody chops off both of your legs from under you, and you try to crawl out of the way of that steam roller, and it is going to come, and you can't get get away fast enough and it's going to roll over you. |
|Graham Richardson||(in front of the Edmonton Law Courts Building) This is an intimidating place, especially dealing with divorces, children and custody. That's why government members who helped write these changes are hoping that the mere existence of new tools for judges will actually cut down on court applications. |
|Marlene Graham |
|I hope that it won't have to be used a whole lot, but still, knowing that it's there, I think will influence parents to be very careful before refusing to grant access. |
|Graham Richardson||Thousands of non-custodial parents hope so too, for them this is not just another law. |
|Walter Schneider ||There is now something in the law which allows people to hope. |
|Graham Richardson||Graham Richardson, ITV News|
|Back to newsroom:|
|Gordon Steinke!||Changes are also planned by the federal government in this area, but they have been delayed by more than a year. |
|Gordon Steinke from ITV News mentioned nothing about what is causing the delays in the implementation of the changes planned by the federal government. |
|The delays are caused by the Justice Department dragging its feet on account of its feminist ideology with respect to family policies. What the Department of Justice and Canadian feminist justices want differs widely from what Canadians and their representatives want and from what the Joint Senate/House of Commons Committee for the Review of Child Access and Custody had recommended subsequently to its Canada-wide consultation process in 1998. In its report for the Sake of the Children, issued in Dec. 1998, the Joint S/H Committee had made forty-eight separate recommendations that were to be incorporated into Canadian divorce law. |
The Joint Committee's SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS
The Joint Committee's full report For the Sake of the Children
|Anne McLellan, then Canadian Minister of Justice, issued a statement in May 1999, explaining that the issue of child access and custody is not a simple one and needs to be looked at in greater detail to take into account various federal, provincial and territorial concerns. Of course, that statement ignores that all of those issues that she feels need more and lengthy review had been looked at in great detail and at great length (for ten years already), by the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Task Force on the Review of Child Custody, Access and Support, starting in 1986.|
|That task force issued a report of its findings that, incredibly, only addressed the issue of child support payments. Nevertheless the report became the foundation for Bill C-41 the Federal Child Support Guidelines that became Law May 1, 1997, after a heroic struggle by Senators Jessiman (PC) and Cools (Liberal) in the Senate to prevent the passing of that bill.|
|In a nutshell, the delays are caused by the fact that it is not our legislators (law givers) who make Canadian law anymore, but that it is now our judicial activists who do so. See the summary of the history of the fight for justice for families that is shown at the bottom of this web page. |
|It would never have entered my mind that I would be in trouble over my statements provided in the ITV interview with Graham Richardson, or that anyone would object to them in any way, but that is exactly what happened. |
On Monday, May 8, 2000, when we went to pick up the mail from the local post office (8.5 miles from here), I found a letter from my oldest son's wife. It was the first letter I ever received from her (no, it wasn't signed by my son). They live 24 miles away from here.
I had written and phoned a number of times, but since about 1984 I have not heard from or seen them anymore, although I now and then hear through friends the odd item of news about their family.
|I thought that I should ignore the letter because it isn't a very nice one, but Ruth feels that it may be the first opening of the lines of communications. |
Perhaps, but if it takes an interview on TV to get things going, at the rate I get these interviews it may well be that I'll be long dead and buried before I have a chance to sort things out between Stephan and me. At any rate, from the tone of the letter it appears very unlikely that there'll be any reconciliation.
You judge for yourself:
April 30, 2000!
Dear Mr. Walter Schneider
I was appalled at watching ITV news on Friday, April 14th at 6:00 p.m. and seeing my husband's picture on TV while a man, who claimed to be my husband's father, wanted the whole world to know what a victim he had been in his divorce (many years ago). How dare you!!!
.... (Rest of the two-page letter omitted it got worse after that opening)
The family is like a book the children are the leaves.
The parents are the cover, that protecting beauty gives.
At first the pages of the book are blank and purely fair,
But time soon writeth memories and painteth pictures there.
Love is the little golden clasp that bindeth up the trust.
Oh break it not, lest all the leaves should scatter and be lost.
Author unknown (Source: Bush to Bushels
A history of Bruderheim & District, p. 229)
|Three of my surviving children have a good relationship with me, largely thanks to the efforts of Sue and Nancy, my daughters, who tried their best over the years to heal wounds and to maintain and nurture the ties between the rubble of what used to be at one time a close-knit family. Here is a picture of the two sons of my youngest daughter and her husband have.|
|It is too bad, but they live almost a thousand miles from here. It takes a 15-hour drive to visit them. However, to round out the picture, here is are pictures of the two daughters that my oldest daughter and her husband have. They do live close by, just one hour's drive from here.|
Summary of the history of the fight for justice for families in Canada
|In the article identified after this summary Donna Laframboise mentions the financial hardship that was imparted in 1997 to fathers because "...judges profoundly misunderstand how the removal of the tax deductibility of child-support payments in 1997 has affected support payers' lives." |
It is very unlikely that the judges are so ill-informed or ignorant and stupid as not to know about these hardships that came into existence when Bill C-41 and its companion bill became law May 1, 1997. (See Report on Taxation of Child Support From C-69 to C-92)
The controversy about the bill, raised by objections from thousands of non-custodial parents, virtually without exception fathers from all across Canada, resulted in a ruckus in the Standing Senate Committee on Science, Sociology and Technology, precisely on account of the single-minded, punitive, money-grabbing scheme by which Bill C-41 squeezed even the last possible cent out of non-custodial fathers through related changes to the Income Tax Act that would remove from fathers the ability to deduct child support payments from their taxable income.
Senators Duncan Jessiman (PC, now retired) and Anne Cools (Liberal) were the hold-outs in the Standing Committee who refused to sign the bill into law.
The introduction of the changes to the Canadian Divorce Act that were introduced by Bill C-41 were only one third of the mandate of the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Task Force on the Review of Child Custody, Access and Support that had been established in 1986 and had met for ten years to assess information on what changes to Canadian divorce law should be made. The changes reflected in the child support guidelines introduced in May 1997 under Bill C-41 were based on the sole focus of the final report by the task force: child support. Access and custody issues had been ignored in the final report by the task force. Perhaps ten years of meeting and studying didn't leave enough time and resources to cover the other two thirds of the task force's mandate?
Now justice minister Anne McLellan is in the process of creating that task force once more and thereby holds up the implementation of the recommendations made in the final report by the Joint Senate/House Committee that Donna Laframboise reported on in her article.
Anne McLellan already delayed the implementation of those recommendations by more than a year. It is impossible to comprehend why that delay is necessary. After all, the prior task force already studied for ten years the very issues that the as-yet-unannounced new task force will look at once more.
The joint Senate/House Committee that produced the recommendations that Anne McLellan refused to implement and that are now being obfuscated by Mr. Cauchon, the current justice minister, became established as a direct result of the massive writing, publicity and lobbying campaign by Canadian parenting-rights organizations and activists in support of the efforts by Senators Jessiman (PC) and Cools (LIberal). Their efforts eventually resulted in concessions, such as that a review of all legal aspects of parenting after divorce and separation should be made by a to-be-established Joint Senate/House Committee for that review, and such as that at least some parenting time spent by non-custodial parents in the care of their children would be taken into account in the calculation of child support amounts to be paid. The threshold for that was set at 40 percent of the life of children that was spent by children with their non-custodial parents.
However, Bill C-41 was passed and signed into law during the last week of the session of the Parliament in session then. What was passed as well, in almost total silence and stealth, by very devious means and in defiance of all attempts to find out what was happening in that respect, were the changes to the Canadian Income Tax Act necessary for the Liberal government to reap the benefits intended from the implementation of Bill C-41: increased tax revenues, a windfall of increased tax revenues.
(See Report on Taxation of Child Support From C-69 to C-92)
The changes to the Income Tax Act were rushed through Parliament in record time, without any debate, and signed into law immediate thereafter. By record time it must be understood that the time interval from introduction to passing the tax bill into law literally took place within the space of about eight hours stretched over two days, virtually one of the last acts of Parliament in that session, before it closed for the upcoming elections. You should well ask why all of the stealth, the urgency, the deceit.
What was at stake was the source of funding for the star promise in the Liberal platform for the 1997 elections. That shiny example of Liberal vote-buying involved the Child Tax Credit to single mothers, divorced, never-married, widowed, any and every single mother. $250 million per year was to be shelled out to these mothers, tax-free, to fight the much-exaggerated plight of single mothers and their children in poverty, who are considered by the liberal-minded Liberals to be in poverty if their total annual income from all sources is less than about $30,000 per year.
Where was the money to come from, with the Liberals running an annually recurring budget deficit? Simple, the money was to be collected from the tax-revenue windfall created by the Bill-C-41-related changes to the Income Tax Act and the fact that non-custodial fathers would not be able to claim the deduction of the increased levels of child support payments resulting from the implementation of Bill C-41 from their taxable income any longer. The effect of that on fathers, and even on their separated families, as Donna Laframboise correctly points out in her article, is devastating.
The total extent of that seemingly somewhat insignificant change in the tax laws is better understood if one considers that the increased tax revenues amount to as much as one billion dollars per year, according to some of the estimates that the experts made at the time. Voil: funding for the materialization of a sizeable election-campaign promise, and still a sizeable chunk of net profit left over, perhaps as little as maybe $250 million, perhaps as much as $750 million per year. Who knows? The Liberals will never tell us, but the consequences of that cannot be hidden, they come to the surface in the ever mounting stories of financial devastation of families heaped on top of emotional and physical devastation.
One of the consequences is a steadily increasing numbers of suicides by men the ultimate escape for men to whom all other avenues of escape are closed, men who are completely and totally stripped of their rights as fathers, even of all of their civil rights, especially of the right to equal and equitable justice and the right to a life. Yes, fathers are driven to self-destruction because they see flight into death as the only way out from their persecution.
The story doesn't end with the passing of the tax law changes. After the closing of the Parliament, and with the mission the legalization of the financial devastation of fathers being accomplished, the-then-justice-minister Alan Rock gave indications of welshing on his promise under condition of which the Joint Senate/House Committee for the Review of Child Access and Custody was to be established. A second massive writing and lobbying campaign by Canadian parenting rights organizations and activists had to be launched, until a firm and irrevocable commitment had been granted by the dubitable Liberal Alan Rock.
All of that took place in 1997. There were regular and frequent demonstrations in front of Law Court buildings all over Canada. These demonstrations brought the judges to their windows, to see and to hear. The demonstrations received much coverage in the media, on the evening news, in print -- in text and pictorial format. The very issues that Donna Laframboise now reported on were then the topics of the slogans on hundreds of picket signs carried in prominent locations under the noses of legislators and judges. Some of the signs were covered in such clarity in the papers that I even received telephone calls from people who had seen my telephone number on some of the signs depicted in the news, even though the telephone number was in a much smaller font than the themes of the signs.
Now we are to accept that "...judges profoundly misunderstand how the removal of the tax deductibility of child-support payments in 1997 has affected support payers' lives." Sorry, but Donna Laframboise, as attractive as her coverage of these issues was in this series of articles of hers, knows better than that. What are we supposed to do? Feel sorry for judges for profoundly misunderstanding? It doesn't wash, and it won't work.
Educating our judges is impossible, or at least the majority of our judges will not let on that they learn or learned anything. Their ostensible failure to learn is most likely due to different causes, very likely due to
political correctness. The planned destruction of fathers and families is "in," equitable justice for their preservation is "out," as is judicial impartiality. Safely ensconced in their judicial immunity and secure in the knowledge of their absolute power over our lives and those of our children, our judges wash their hands of the human misery and tragedies they bring about.
Update 2003 04 02:
Roger Eldridge is quite right in considering the implementation of the
international agenda for the planned destruction of the family to be nothing other than the expansion of apartheid to the rest of the world. Nobody managed to make that more clear than Martin Cauchon, Canada's current minister of justice (Liberal), while promoting Bill C22 (the Justice Department's proposal soon to be passed into law for changes to Canada's Divorce Act, by which the cogent list of recommendations made by the Joint Senate/House of Commons Committee for urgently needed changes to the Divorce Act are to be obfuscated, neutralized and blocked). Martin Cauchon stated:
Parents [that is, almost exclusively fathers] don't have rights vis-a-vis their children; they have responsibilities.
Report Newsmagazine, Jan 6, 2003, p. 30
Dave Rutherford, the host of The Rutherford Show on Corus Radio, commented 2003 04 01 in response to Martin Cauchon's claim, "Are fathers anything else but penises with wallets?"
The implementation of the gender agenda marches on.
Walter H. Schneider
|This is the last of Donna Laframboise's articles in her recent series on fathers and the judicial system. |
Tuesday, March 28, 2000
'This is about punishing Dad'
His former wife gets 96% of his take-home pay. Is that justice?
By Donna Laframboise
Last fall, three Ontario Court of Appeal judges rejected "Michael's" plea to reduce his family-support payments. In their view, there was no reason why he shouldn't continue paying $7,153 to his former wife each month -- $4,153 in child support, plus $3,000 in alimony....
Full story (The story at this and the following links will only be accessible for a few more weeks. You may want to download them, so that you have them on hand if needed.)
MYTH OF THE DEADBEAT DAD
How to end the war against divorced dads
"This is madness"
Part One: Pilloried, broke, alone
Part One: Second Wives' club
Meet Cathy Young,
And another update:
|Comments/Feedback, even if brief, can be sent to the Editor of The Observer (Sarnia, Ontario): Fax: (519) 332-2951|
The Sarnia Observer
15 December 2001
DIVORCE ACT REVIEW IN ITS FINAL STAGES
MP Roger Gallaway says latest report "a shameful waste of money"
By Chris Cobb - Southam Newspapers
Nearly five years after launching its controversial study of the federal Divorce Act, the Chretien government is completing its latest, and likely final, round of research into custody, access and child support.
Justice Minister Anne McLellan has until May to either issue a report detailing possible changes to the law or taking new divorce legislation directly to Parliament. She has yet to decide which option to take, her spokeswoman said.
McLellan angered many pro-father and pro-grandparent campaigners when she postponed new divorce legislation in 1999 and ordered three more years of study. The delay also infuriated many MPs and senators who comprised a special joint parliamentary committee into to custody and access and produced a 1998 report For the Sake of the Children.
The cornerstone of that report was a new system called shared parenting under which divorced or separated mothers and fathers would each have an automatic legal right to be involved in the raising of their children.
Other recommendations included penalties for false accusations of abuse and prosecution for obstruction of court-ordered access granted to non-custodial parents.
McLellan said the extra three years of study was needed because the issue is complex and involved provincial, territorial and federal jurisdiction.
The latest report on the topic is an executive summary of 45 closed-door "workshops" held across the country between April and June this year and 71 written submissions. Also reflected are the views of 2,300 Canadians who completed a questionnaire. None of the comments in the report is attributed. The process cost $1.5 million.
Outraged feminist groups boycotted the consultations because they objected to sitting at the same table as
Fathers Rights advocates. One group complained that the process would further the "subordination of women."
Sarnia Liberal MP Roger Gallaway, who co-chaired the joint Senate-Commons committee and has constantly criticized McLellan for refusing to implement its recommendations, said the latest report is a "shameful waste of money."
"It's rather like cheating at solitaire," he said. "They determined who attended these consultations and loaded the deck in determining what topics would be discussed. And who knows who filled in those booklets. There is nothing in it of any value. It's a bunch of platitudes and generalizations."
The federal government wants any new legislation to be co-ordinated with the provinces and territories.
Justice Department lawyer Virginia McRae, who was co-chairwoman of the consultations, said it is important to bring the provinces and territories into the process.
"There's a benefit of doing it jointly," she said. "We have taken into account what each of us can do and how to fit everything together into a better response to address the needs of children."
The executive summary is on the Justice department's Web site
(http://canada.justice.gc.ca) under Public Consultations. The full report is expected to be posted within two weeks.
Memories of old homes are always very sweet,
And thoughts of early childhood days make later years complete.
Memories of achievement of days that long have gone,
Often give us courage, when other hopes have flown.
Memories of old loves we never can forget,
Though in life's later years, other loves we've met.
Memories of old friends are very sacred too,
And many times we're lonesome for the friends that once we knew.
Life is full of memories as time rolls on its way,
The present time shall soon become a memory too, some day.
Author unknown (published in Bush to Bushels, A history of Bruderheim & District, p. 477)
(Alberta) Family Law Statutes Amendment Act, 1999 (Sponsor: Victor Doerksen)
First Reading 799 (Mar. 30 aft.)
Second Reading 1027-33 (Apr. 14 eve.), 1239-47 (Apr. 26 aft.)
Committee of the Whole 1416-18 (May 3 eve.), 1517-18 (May 5 eve.)
Third Reading 1727-28 (May 13 aft.)
+ Royal Assent (May 19 , outside of House sitting)
Nov. 20, 2000, the news carried an item stating that Dave Hancock, Alberta Minister of Justice and Attorney General announced that in connection with its get-tough-on-deadbeats policy that brought an extra $4.3 million in unpaid child support collected during the last year, the Alberta Government will begin to post pictures and personal details of deadbeat fathers on the Internet. Who says that a bit of water can't be squeezed out of a dry rock or a little bit of blood or an extra dime out of beaten-dead fathers?
No announcement was made as to whether the government will come up with a corresponding get-tough policy covering deadbeat moms, mothers who deny children their right to have fathers in their lives. Nothing was said as to what it cost the taxpayers to make it possible to collect those extra $91.49 per year per the average active child maintenance file in Alberta (there are about 47,000 of them)
Not too surprisingly, Alberta shares along with Quebec the dubious honour of having the highest male suicide rates in all of Canadian provinces. However, as our elected federal dictator insists on telling us year after year, we live in "de bess' country in de worl'!" So, things can't really be all that bad yet. [That is no longer true.]
Perhaps that's as true as his promise: "We'll kill de GST." Nevertheless, we have a long way to go before the rate of the destruction of our families reaches that in the Scandinavian countries, where the suicide rates are correspondingly much higher than in Alberta. It'll take us even longer to reach the suicide rates in the countries that were members of the former communist bloc, where the destruction of the families with the goal of eliminating it as the source of all class struggle has been progressing inexorably ever since 1917.
What can we expect? We've got 50 years of catching up to do! A global socialist State can't be built over night, and you can't make an omelet without breaking eggs.
Why don't you give Victor Doerksen a call or drop him a line. Maybe he's got some ideas on what you can do in your situation? If nothing else, it'll give him something that he can use to put teeth into the Access "Enforcement" legislation. Perhaps he'll be so kind as to send you a copy of the Family Law Statutes Amendment Act. You can always frame it and hang it right over your bed as a reminder of what doesn't work in getting you access to your children.
Contact Information for Victor P. Doerksen (PC) biography
MLA for Red Deer South
#701, 9718 - 107 Street
Phone: (780) 427-1145
Fax: (780) 422-1671
#503, 4901 - 48 Street
Red Deer, AB
Phone: (403) 340-3565
Fax: (403) 346-9260
E-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org
* The Fraser Institute proposes a more realistic alternative to the United Nations' Human Development Index. According to that, Canada's rank was 16th in the world as of 1999, and the US was 1st.
MLA Review of the Maintenance Enforcement Program and Child
Access JUSTICE Alberta Justice Communications 3rd floor, Bowker
Building 9833 - 109 Street Edmonton, Alberta T5K 2E8 Tel: 403/
427- 8530 Fax: 403/ 422- ...
http://www.gov.ab.ca/just/upload/MEP_Review.pdf - size 385.2K
PS. The news aren't all bad. It was immensely gratifying to see Anne McLellan (Liberal), the federal justice minister, lose her cool in the public debate with her opponent Betty Unger of the Canadian Alliance Party. Anne McLellan trailed Betty Unger in the polls, by 34 to Betty Unger's 37 percent. (Unfortunately, although it seemed that Betty Unger would win the election by a hair, almost at the last-minute the results of the vote count for the Armed Forces ballots were added to Anne McLellan's vote count and she regained her seat in Parliament by a safe margin. However, let's not forget that the majority of the voters in her riding in Edmonton voted against her.)
If you have concerns about these and other issues related to the condition of
seniors, visit, contact and perhaps even join:
SUN Seniors United Now
The up- and coming, rapidly-growing advocacy organization
for seniors (55 years and over) in Alberta
There are in the order of about half a million or more people of age 55 and
over in Alberta. If all of them were to join SUN, they would become the most
powerful advocacy organization in Alberta; and seniors would no longer be robbed
of their comforts and otherwise ignored.
At the price of one package of cigarettes seniors will be able to
gain a voice that will be heard by a government that otherwise can and will take
from seniors what they worked for all their life to enjoy in their old age.
If you are concerned about how seniors are affected by the
systematic destruction of our families and society, a search
at google.com (for elderly OR seniors OR grandparent OR grandfather OR
grandmother site:http://fathersforlife.org) will provide you with the links
to about 84 web pages at Fathers for Life that will be of interest to you.