Debtors prision the appearance this is norm

December 23, 2014 § Leave a comment

Anytime Illinois Fathers organizes a support effort for a parent, our membership likes to know details, or in other words, “the story”, about the parent and why the parent should be supported. This is our best attempt to put together “the story” about Mick Gerhardt who is currently incarcerated.

Mick was married with one child and working as a patent law attorney. Although Mick was a licensed attorney, at the time he was completely unfamiliar with the family court system. Initially in the case, Mick handled it Pro Se, however he eventually hired an attorney who charged a ridiculous retainer and shortly thereafter withdrew from the case. Mick then hired another attorney who did exactly the same thing. During the divorce proceedings, Mick was barred from presenting financial information to the courts, such as assets (or lack thereof), and income. His divorce decree is vague which leaves a lot of room for the other parent to exploit. At some point, the Judge ordered that Mick should pay the attorney fees of Mick’s ex. If anything dealt the death blow to Mick, it was this ruling that he be financially liable for the ex’s attorneys. The ex in fact is represented by not one, but two attorneys who charge a questionable hourly rate and of course are motivated to pad their invoices since Mick is ordered to pay for their “services” after all. In addition, Mick’s ex presents to the court invoices for things such as child care, taxi rides and other expenses which get added to Mick’s tab, and over time, Mick’s tab has grown to the point that Mick cannot possibly pay it down.

Most recently, Judge Schuster ordered Mick to attend a session with a division of HFS called Parental Services Unit, which is supposed to help Parents like Mick work out some way to pay off their debt. Mick had an appointment with Parental Services Unit for late morning on the same day that he was ordered to appear in Judge Schuster’s court. Mick appeared on time in Judge Schuster’s court. Eventually it was time for Mick’s PSU appointment so he left the court in order to attend his PSU appointment, then Judge Schuster called his case and ordered Mick jailed for not showing up. Mick is not sentenced for any definite length of time, but rather he is sentenced until he, (or someone on his behalf) comes up with $ 10,000.

By the way, if he does come up with the money, it will get him out of jail only for a while, until the ex and her 2 attorneys take him back to court again for more money.

Dr. Stephen Baskerville brilliantly makes the point that the Debtors Prisons of modern times are actually worse than the well known Debtors Prisons in Old Europe. This is because the modern day Debtors Prisons throw fathers in jail not for expenses which they incur, but rather for expenses that are assigned to them by some Judge, i.e. onerous child support obligations and/or attorneys fees for the ex’s attorney(s). Furthermore, our Judges routinely impute the father’s income, that is the Judge does not determine that the father is unable to pay due to lack of adequate income, but instead the Judge will impute that the father should be earning a larger amount of income and thus the father should pay according to what the Judge imputes his income should or could be. Even the somewhat recent Supreme Court decision of Turner vs. Rodgers (cannot incarcerate if the party does not have ability to pay) is rendered useless by this power that the Judges have to impute our income. Another factor to consider in cases like Mick’s is that while fathers like Mick are in jail, the Judges can say that it is voluntary unemployment as the debts continue to accrue. It absolutely defies logic, but Judges are doing this to fathers.

Mick is perhaps the only attorney in the State of Illinois who will talk openly and on the record regarding how absolutely disgusting, corrupt and out of control these courts have become. Additionally, Mick has helped innumerable parents with their cases, and he has also testified on behalf of all of us in front of different committees at our State’s Capitol.

We are hoping to organize a protest or a rally on behalf of Mick near the Daley Center on Saturday January 31st. In our previous newsletter, we asked for members to commit their willingness to attend, and sadly we received a dismal response. We really need a decent turnout in order to get media attention focused upon what Judge Schuster and so many others are getting away with. Also, if anyone out there has earned what should be our support, it is Attorney Mick Gerhardt.

Will you please consider sending an e-mail to Steven Westerfield at westerfield.steven@yahoo.com to let us know that you WILL be there with us at the Daley Center Saturday January 31st beginning at 10 30 am ?

If you would like to visit Mick, visiting days are Thursday and Saturday 3:30-8:30 and you must register 3 days in advance through computer so that they have enough time to clear your name. Before going, just call Cook County 773-674-5225 and check that you have been approved to visit. If you would like to mail Mick a snail mail letter,

Mick Gerhardt
20141113148
PO Box 084002
2D-ID
Chicago, IL 60608

Anything each of us can do to let Mick know that we are thinking about him will do a lot to lift his spirits and give him some hope.

On Saturday January 17th, Illinois Fathers will be holding our first ever Pro Se course at the Springfield Office. The course is scheduled to begin at 1pm and run until 6pm. More details are on our website. ( From Chicago’s Union Station, Amtrak’s 303 Lincoln Service arrives in Springfield at 12 50 pm, and Amtrak’s 306 Lincoln Service departs at 7 30 pm). To get a ride from the Train Station to the Illinois Father’s office, e-mail browntim@midstatematerialhandling.com Even if you have an attorney, the Pro Se course is an excellent way to familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of the court system.

The newsletter you are currently reading goes out to 540 subscribers. Our facebook following has grown to over 1500. We can never work too hard in order to get the word out about Illinois Fathers and one way we do this is with the Illinois Father’s Tri-Fold brochure. Many of our members have accepted the role of putting our Tri-Folds out there in public places such as offices of elected officials, various government agency offices, churches, YMCA’s, and other places where parents can view our brochure and discover Illinois Fathers. If you would like a box of approximately 250 Tri-Fold brochures sent to you, please e-mail Steven Westerfield or Tim Brown.

Once again, please consider joining us on behalf of Mick Gerhardt on January 31st.

Steven Westerfield
President
Illinois Fathers
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ILLINOIS SHARED PARENTING BILL IN JUDICIARY COMMITTEE CALL THEM TO MOVE FORWARD HB 5425

March 14, 2014 § Leave a comment

ILLINOIS SHARED PARENTING BILL STUCK IN COMMITTEE

THE BIGGEST OPPOSER OF THIS  IL.HB 5425  IS THE ISBA AND CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT AGANCY DIRECTORS BECAUSE IT’LL TAKE MONEY AWAY FROM THEM .
  THE MAIN REASON IS BECAUSE IT WILL HINDER THE FEDERAL MONIES,MANIPULATION OF SOCIAL SECURITY TITLE IV A-F AND OTHER TITLE BENEFITS GOING TO THE STATE OF OVER $900,000,000.00 MILLION DOLLARS.  REPORTED BY PAMELA LOWRY DIRECTOR OF CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT IN ILLINOIS  IN A  MEETING OF THE CHILD SUPPORT ENFORCEMENT COMMITTEE IN 2013.

March 10, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.

Among a large and growing number of states, Illinois has a bill before its legislature that would amend current child custody laws to encourage post-divorce parenting time of not less than 35% for each parent. Here’s an important article on the bill.

And here’s the bill itself, i.e. the underlined portions amending existing law.

The bill would add to the purposes to be achieved by divorce that it is presumptively in the best interests of children that each parent have at least 35% parenting time post-divorce.

Beyond that, it would require parents to file a parenting plan with the family court within 90 days of the divorce filing. If the parents don’t do so, the judge would be required to issue a parenting order. That order would require equal parenting time unless the judge finds the parents aren’t fit or that it would otherwise be in the child’s best interests for less time to be allocated to one parent. In that event a minimum of 35% must be ordered to each parent. Either parent may waive his/her right to that 35% minimum. The parents are entitled to agree to any parenting time they wish.

One obvious strength of Illinois HB 5425 is that it closely conforms to the social science on family arrangements post-divorce and their impact on child well-being. As Professor Richard Warshak and 110 of his eminent colleagues worldwide have recently reported in a comprehensive review of the social science literature, when parenting time drops below that 35% threshold, the benefits to children of shared parenting start to diminish.

Another strength of the bill is that it presumes parents to be fit. Of course the presumption is rebuttable, but the fact is that most parents are entirely capable of continuing in their children’s lives following divorce or separation. As we’ve seen from the recent survey of almost 400 child custody cases in Nebraska, the issue of fitness wasn’t even mentioned about 95% of the time. And it’s likely that in at least some of those in which it was made an issue, unfitness wasn’t proven. In short, according to the parents themselves – parents who were otherwise none too happy with each other – there was no problem with parental fitness in almost every case.

So it seems a presumption of fitness is appropriate.

And of course the usual factors can be used to rebut the presumptions of HB 5425. So issues like child abuse, domestic violence and the like can always be raised to prevent parents who are clearly not beneficial to their children from having equal, or almost equal, custody.

As we’ve come to expect, any improvement in children’s rights to maintain healthy, loving relationships with their fathers will get considerable opposition, and the same is true in Illinois. HB 5425 is stuck in the Rules Committee and has until March 28 to be voted out. Failure to do so will mean the death of shared parenting legislation in Illinois for this legislative session.

The linked-to article urges people to contact the bill’s sponsors and ask them to have HB 5425 released from the committee. So do I. Here’s a list of their names and contact information.

Please call HB 5425 sponsors John Cabello 217-782-0455, Monique Davis, 217-782-0010, JoAnn D. Osmond, 217-782-8151, William Davis, 217-782-8197. Let these representatives know that you support shared parenting and HB 5425. Specifically ask that the representative make a special request that HB 5425 be released out of Rules Committee. Be friendly but firm in your support of HB 5425 because your fair share of democracy is on the line.

Please call House Speaker Michael Madigan at 217-782-5350 or secretary “April” at 773-581-8000 and simply say “Children need BOTH parents now more than ever — Please support HB 5425.” Specifically ask that the representative make a special request that HB 5425 be released out of Rules Committee.

NATIONAL PARENTS ORGANIZATION IS A SHARED PARENTING ORGANIZATION

National Parents Organization is a non-profit that educates the public, families, educators, and legislators about the importance of shared parenting and how it can reduce conflict in children, parents, and extended families. Along with Shared Parenting we advocate for fair Child Support and Alimony Legislation. Want to get involved?  Here’s how:

Together, we can drive home the family, child development, social and national benefits of shared parenting, and fair child support and alimony. Thank you for your activism.

The most IMPORTANT Bill in over a decade for non-custodial parent – HB5425 (Minimum Parenting Time and Parenting Plans) has moved forward.

March 14, 2014 § Leave a comment

The most IMPORTANT Bill in over a decade for non-custodial parent – HB5425 (Minimum Parenting Time and Parenting Plans)  has moved forward.

This is the BILL the ISBA hates and has been attempting to sabotage (Because HB5425 will take custody fights out of the process.  Remember, fights mean lawyers get rich.  They want fights over your children.).  But thanks to all your calls in the last 2 weeks (and I am told there were lots), HB5425 today left the Rules Committee today and will be before the Judiciary Committee at 8:30 AM, on Thursday, March 13, 2014.

We NEED as many people as possible in Springfield.  Call in sick.  Arrange car pools.  If you cannot go, chip in $20 (or any amount you can) or whatever to those who want to go – remember, many of our advocates are dead broke fighting in the court system to just get minimum time with their kids.

But there is still much work to be done.  You NEED to CALL every member of the Judiciary Committee.  Tell them to support HB5425.  Tell them to co-sponsor HB5425.  If they waiver or seem to be against it, ask them what their reservations are.  Be firm.  Do not take no for an answer.  Have every friend and family member call.  All those grandparents out there need to call the other grandparents to have all grandparents call.  If you live out of State, you may still have an interest in this Bill.  (Lots of grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc., live out of State and they are affected by the stupidity of the current practice in family court.)

Please forward this email to as many as possible.

Here is the link to the Judiciary Committee.  Click on it.  Click on every member.   Call.  Hunt them down.   http://www.ilga.gov/house/committees/members.asp?committeeID=1192

Parenting time in Illinois. Fathers that demand to be with their children as a right of a parent.

March 11, 2014 § Leave a comment

It was Martin Luther King who said, “We begin to die the day we begin to be silent on issues that matter.” Divorce and separation in this country all too often mean that children lose sufficient contact with at least one of their parents and one side of an entire family.

Most people don’t know that the standard “visitation” schedule for non-custodial parents in the state of Illinois is four hours a week and every other weekend. No matter how good and participatory a parent has been, this is the standard time allotted to almost all non-custodial parents.
This makes bonding over the course of a child’s first 18 years of development next to impossible. As a nurse with considerable adult and adolescent psychiatric nursing experience, I see firsthand the social, emotional and psychological havoc wreaked on children and adults who did not receive sufficient parenting time due to court orders. If even bonding is not proactively pursued by family courts, the resulting dynamic may very well negatively impact future relationships as an adult.
– See more at:

http://m.rrstar.com/article/20140308/OPINION/140309317?template=printart#sthash.9pSBsrrK.dpuf

 

 

My View: Children need both parents; support Shared Parenting Bill – Gate House
m.rrstar.com
It was Martin Luther King who said, “We begin to die the day we begin to be silent on issues that matter.” Divorce and separation in this country all too often mean that children lose sufficient…

 

lets fight the (ISBA) illinois state bar assoc. that does not care anything about our children they are a profit center for them just a meal ticket.

March 7, 2014 § Leave a comment

Side note the Illinois State Bar assoc. are greedy scumbags and only care about themselves not our children or if we get exploited by them . The appearance they try to portray is they are  righteus  in every intent.  Which is so far misrepresenting the simple fact they are by most part scumbags in family court this is the biggest profit center and is a cottage industry in our Illinois courts.
Our biggest concern is they(Illinois bar assoc.) has an appearance that they  do not give a shit about our children and most of them that represent them As (GAL,r Child rep.) commit fraud on a daily basis and the bar assoc. is supporting this kind of conduct and has utter disregard for 8.1 8.3 8.4 or any codes of ethical or professional conduct as well as statutory responsibility to follow the legislative intent.
Thanks Illinois Fathers for fighting against this tyrant thats duping the legislature and destroying and abusing children and families in Illinois.
Illinois Fathers
It was Martin Luther King who said, “We begin to die the day we begin to be silent on issues that matter.” IT WILL TAKE YOU LESS THEN 2 MINUTES PER PHONE CALL TO SAVE A CHILD’S LIFETIME BOND WITH THEIR PARENT. REPRESENTATIVES DO NOT EXPECT YOU TO BE AN EXPERT ON THE BILLS…THEY JUST NEED THE PHONE CALLS TO KNOW YOU WANT THEM TO SUPPORT HB 5425, HB 4459 AND HB 4458 and that you want the representative to make a special request that all 3 bills be passed out of rules committee immediately.

TOTAL success now depends on what YOU DO or not do in the next 48 hours. Countless volunteer hours at the capitol have carried the ball down to the current goal line but if you don’t pick up the phone then our 2014 legislative agenda may very well die. The DEADLINE to get our bills out of committee is March 28th.

We have worked very hard to this point and we have strong bi-partisan sponsors signed on to our bills so it is a BIG “mystery” as to why our bills are still waiting in the 5 person Rules Committee(the first committee for all bills which almost always passes on bills for further consideration – 3 Democrats, 2 Republicans) to be passed on for full consideration. We need our bills out of Rules Committee NOW to have time to make the March 28th deadline.

Priority Number 1: Call Rep. Monique Davis (217) 782-0010 AND CALL AT (773) 445-9700 and thank her for taking on the role of Chief Sponsor in SUPPORT of HB 5425, HB 4459 and HB 4458. If you say, “I heard Rep. Davis met with Richard Thomas yesterday(3/5/2014) and you agreed to take on bills HB 5425, HB 4459 and HB 4458, THANK YOU SO MUCH for supporting our bills and please do what you can to get our bills passed out of Rules Committee.” If you say these words to Rep. Davis or her secretary, they will know exactly what and who you mean. Be friendly but firm in your support of these 3 bills because your fair share of democracy is on the line.

Priority Number 2: Please call Representative Michael J. Madigan (D) at (217) 782-5350 or Secretary “April” at (773) 581-8000 and simply say “Children need BOTH parents now more than ever – Please SUPPORT HB 5425.” HB 5425 has strong bi-partisan support, but will die if Rep. Madigan doesn’t allow it to a vote. What is HB 5425? If the court determines that both parents are fit and good, then the non-custodial parent will be allotted/offered 35 percent minimum parenting time weekly to facilitate EVEN bonding. Parentlessness is killing this nation, please call today. Take the target off the backs of children, TODAY! BE a hero…CALL, CALL, CALL TODAY. Please also ask that HB 4459 and HB 4458 be special requested passed the Rules Committee. All 3 bills have bi-partisan support signed on.

Priority Number 3:
Please Contact These Members ASAP to SUPPORT HB 5425, HB 4458 and HB 4459 being passed into the next appropriate committee;

House Rules Committee:
Chairperson: Barbara Flynn Currie…D…phone: (217) 782-8121
Spokesperson: Ed Sullivan, Jr….R… phone: (217) 782-3696
Member: Lou Lang…D…(217) 782-1252
Member: David R. Leitch…R…(217) 782-8108
Member: Frank J. Mautino…D…(217) 782-0140

Priority Number 4: If you have time, please email me any responses you get on the above at NurseRichardThomas@gmail.com

I spoke with NAACP President Lloyd Johnston recently and he was very excited in favor of our bills. I’ve been informed that the NAACP is drafting its letter of support due within a day or so. But will that come in time to get our bills out of Rules Committee? Let’s not depend on it…make your calls today.
Spent all day at the capitol yesterday. We met with over 30 representatives, many high-ranking ones. Thanks to Brian Caldwell and Shane Bouvet who showed a lot of promise at the capitol yesterday. They will represent family law reform well in the very near future.
Democracy is now in yours hands…please print this off and call today!!! In Solidarity, Richard Thomas, Loves Park, (815) 690-5034.

Explanation of Bills:
HB 5425: Divorce in this country all too often means that children lose sufficient contact with at least one of their parents. Most people don’t know that the standard “visitation” schedule for non-custodial parents in the State of Illinois is 4 hours a week and every other weekend. No matter how good and participatory a parent has been this is the standard time allotted to almost all non-custodial parents. This makes bonding, especially even bonding, next to impossible, over the course of a child’s first 18 years of development. HB 5425 is a quantum leap forward towards a remedy. This bill takes the target off the backs of Illinois children going through divorce and custody. If a judge determines that both parents are good and fit, the non-custodial parent will be allotted at least 35 percent minimum parenting time weekly to facilitate, enable EVEN bonding with both parents. The bill has strong bi-partisan support and will die unless people call in support. I co-wrote HB 5425 along with Attorney Mick Gerhardt(then filtered through the Legislative Reference Bureau). So, if you have any further questions please contact us.

HB 4459: The bill basically states that if a court finds you innocent during an Order of Protection hearing, you can have that court proven false accusation expunged off your record so it doesn’t ruin your life and career. Innocent is innocent, so there is zero reason why you shouldn’t be able to expunge that proven false accusation. Even convicted criminals get to expunge their records if they keep their record clean for a certain period of time, so why shouldn’t the innocent get expunged? Furthermore, the threshold to obtain an Order of Protection is so low, if can’t get one there is extreme certainty there was no evidence in the first place.

HB 4458: This bill basically states that if a court finds that you have lied under oath while attempting to obtain an Order of Protection, you can receive a penalty for that false accusation. It’s only right and fair.

Special Note: NONE of these bills make ANY changes to the Order of Protection pursuit process for alleged victims of domestic violence.

BILL STATUS AT THE BELOW:
http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/BillStatus.asp?DocNum=5425&GAID=12&DocTypeID=HB&LegId=80301&SessionID=85&GA=98#actions

Richard Thomas
(our guy in Springfield)
Illinois Fathers

Progress –

State Representative Josh Harms last year introduced a Right of First Refusal Bill and thanks to your efforts, Right of First Refusal is now law. We are pleased to report that the new law IS having an impact. We are hearing from at least one father that he gained significantly more time with his child when the father informed his lawyer about the new Right of First Refusal law. Subsequently, the lawyer informed the Judge, who at the time had not heard of the new law, however the Judge granted the father every Thursday visitation beginning after school and continuing overnight, in addition to the typical every other weekend schedule. In another case, a lawyer is using the Right of First Refusal law as leverage for an Illinois Father’s member who is pursuing more visitation time, and in this case, the member did not have to inform the lawyer about the new law. We hope their are more success stories out there for the new Right of First Refusal law. If you have a story of your own to share with us, board@illinoisfathers.org

Another positive is that our membership numbers are climbing. We believe this is due primarily to the efforts of numerous members to display the Illinois Father’s tri-fold brochure in public places. Our overall membership recently surpassed 400. If things continue at current pace, we hope to reach 1,000 members possibly before the end of 2014. Having a larger membership base makes the group more powerful and credible. Places to display the tri-folds are police stations, DCFS offices, court houses, offices of State Representatives and Senators, libraries, churches and other public locations. If you would like a box of approximately 250
pre-printed and pre-folded tri-folds to display in your part of the state, please e-mail tim.brown@illinoisfathers.org

Mr. Prentice Powell is a young father dealing with the courts who was recently featured on the Arsenio Hall show.
http://m.arseniohall.com/video/show-highlights/4127_Prentice_Powell_Performs_Good_Father/index.php
As you can see, he delivers a powerful and emotional presentation. It is also a huge positive for the movement
that his presentation is featured on a mainstream media outlet like the Arsenio Hall show. Currently, Illinois
Fathers is attempting to book Mr. Powell for upcoming April 7th rally in Springfield to support our bills, specifically
HB5425 which is in essence the 35 percent minumum time bill.

Dr. Baskerville’s latest article regarding the divorce industry can be viewed here http://washingtonexaminer.com/when-child-support-becomes-extortion-families-lose/article/2544942

With Illinois Fathers being founded in 2008, the group is now into its seventh calander year. Slowly but surely,
more and more people are learning about Illinois Fathers. All of these successes and efforts take alot of time and
a little bit of money. We would urge everyone reading this to consider taking on a more active role with Illinois
Fathers. If you can donate some money to help pay for printing costs, and costs associated with booking Mr.
Powell, that would be huge. If you can distribute tri-folds, you will probably help us grow our membership. If you
can volunteer in another capacity, please let us know.

Thank you for being a part of Illinois Fathers

Steven Westerfield
President
Illinois Fathers
www.illinoisfathers.org

Illinois Fathers | Children Need Both Parents
Illinois Fathers will be holding our first annual Murder Mystery Dinner on Saturday March 22nd at 7pm.

GOOD FATHER

March 2, 2014 § Leave a comment

Prentice Powell makes his third appearance on Arsenio’s show with an extremely powerful and emotional performance of “Good Father.” Powell didn’t leave a dry eye in the place.

LK: http://legallykidnapped.blogspot.com/2014/03/prentice-powell-performs-good-father.html#ixzz2uoUIozOg

Call your State reps. and senators and voice your concerns about the bills and how the ISBA is against family reform.

February 20, 2014 § Leave a comment

Illinois Fathers
Who opposes HB 5425, HB 4458, HB 4459 and why –

During the past few years, Illinois Fathers has gained a reputation of bringing an “A Team” to testify before committee.  We have a rainbow coalition of pediatricians, nurses, university researches, family law lawyers, etc. ready to defend our bills in front of committee and the entire state.  To round-out our coalition we also have mothers, grandmothers, aunts, uncles and a wide variety of witnesses ready to give that special touch extricable from success in the process.  Bottomline, opposers have never come close to defeating us on the meritorious argument – not surprising given the current state of our state government in Springfield.  All opposition continually refuse to debate us in the public on the issues.  We will continue to ferret out ALL opposition.  And we are well prepared for any personal attacks that may be forthcoming.

Illinois Coalition against comestic violence legislative directors Vicki smith and NoElee Du Puis are in opposition to our bills.  Du Puis recently promised me a metting.  We know all their arguments from the past committee hearings and meetings and we have always revealed them to be without merit and we have never lost a committee vote when they testified.

On 2/19/2014 we met with ISBA Legislative Director Jim Covington in his office and had yet another lengthy discussion.  They will oppose all 3 bills and will oppose all bills we put forward and refuse to counter offer what they would support except on HB 4459.

On HB 4459    http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/billstatus.asp?DocNum=4459&GAID=12&GA=98&DocTypeID=HB&LegID=78769&SessionID=85

Jim Covington says ISBA will oppose.  Covington made what he considered a counter offer ISBA would support.  Covington suggests that Rep. Cabello settle for ISBA sealed language and work with Cassidy on his language.  The language basically says that on a case by case basis a judge MAY seal an OP if the accused is found innocent.

Our response – This is the standard time buying ploy when the truth has you on the ropes.  The words above the Supreme Court state “equal justice under law”.  When asked why leave it to the judge’s discretion if found innocent ?  Innocent is innocent.  Covington had no real response.  OPs are the only offense with zero expungement process.  Even convicted people get expungements if they keep their record clean.  Covington said that the IL coaltion against domestic violence is adamantly opposed to the sealed language as well.  Not to expunge the innocent is contrary to the Constitution.  And when we asked if ISBA would support expungement in the case of a patttern of multiple false accusations in a short period of time, Covington further threw the Consititution under the bus by refusing to support that type of language.  By the way, the sealed language was never filed by the ISBA and when asked why, “We don’t have enough money in our budget to fight for the sealed language so we never filed it.”  And through the entire coversation, Covington admitted that there is a great problem with using OPs as a weapon.  Covington had no answer on why OP “violence” is almost always not prosecuted by state’s attorneys.

On HB 4458     http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/billstatus.asp?DocNum=4458&GAID=12&GA=98&DocTypeID=HB&LegID=78768&SessionID=85

Covington opposes and even opposes punishing false accusers in cases of a pattern of multiple false accusations in a short period of time.  Covington had no response as to why OP “violence” false accusers are almost always not prosecuted by state’s attorneys.  In fact, he couldn’t bring one example when OP perjury was prosecuted.

On HB 5425     http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/BillStatus.asp?DocNum=5425&GAID=12&DocTypeID=HB&LegId=80301&SessionID=85&GA=98

Covington opposes adamantly.  When asked why if the court determines that both parents are good and fit – what would be the downside to a good parent having 35 percent minimum parenting time, Covington’s response was, “There may very well be no downside.”  When asked what percentage of minimum parenting time ISBA would support, “Zero Percent” was the response.  Covington says we should be happy with supporting the 35 percent “aspirational” paragraph in the forthcoming Burke bills.  ISBA will oppose even that aspirational paragraph.

I met with Rep. Kelly Burke and her bottom line is that if we could bring her 60 house reps in support of the 35 percnet minimum parenting time in the next couple of weeks she will put the 35 percent minimum parenting time back in her bills.  Burke STILL maintains that she “supports” 35 percent minimum parenting as it is clearly in the best interests of Illinois children.

I asked Burke why such a small group of vested interests should perpetually control a state of about 12 millions to the detriment of Illinois children.  She kept referring to political realities.  The ISBA has about 30,000 members and there are about 40,000 more potential members who have declined.  Covington even admitted that his 30,000 are not all in agreement.  There are only 900 Judges in this states … why do they get free reign without any accountability ?

Bottomline, opposers will fall flat once we expose them to the bright light of the people, the Constitution and to democracy.  The fact that we have been sought out by so many(who haven’t been revealed in these notes) sends us a loud and clear message that we are on the cusp of victory if we keep pushing forward the truth.  Burke needs to have her phone flooded with the message to put the 35 percent minumum parenting time BACK into her bill…we have a couple of weeks to make that happen.

State Representative Kelly Burke  217/782-0515        708/425-0571

If you would be interested in joining us during our future endeavours at the Capitol please contact us at board@illinoisfathers.org

Richard Thomas
member
Illinois Fathers

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