nuclear first-strike.....in a divorce action

Started by woof, Jul 12, 2005, 01:11 PM

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woof

The
   Fatherhood
   Coalition
   For Immediate Release


   ---------------------------------------------------------------------
   -----------

   Milford, July 11, 2005 - A study of how one court in Massachusetts
   applies the abuse prevention statute (MGL ch.209A) as measured by
   the issuance of "209A restraining orders" has just been published in
   the June issue of Journal of Family Violence, an academic journal on
   domestic violence issues.

   "A Measure of Court Response to Requests for Protection," by the
   Fatherhood Coalition's Steve Basile, examined the 209A restraining
   orders issued in Gardner District Court in 1997. The study reveals a
   clear double standard in the court response to alleged victims of
   domestic abuse/violence.  In each of the benchmarks, women
   plaintiffs (victims) were treated more favorably than men, and
   likewise, male defendants were treated more harshly than their
   female counterparts.


   ---------------------------------------------------------------------
   -----------

   "The message couldn't be clearer. If you are a father suffering
   domestic violence, using the legal system to gain protection for
   yourself is a high risk proposition that may result in you losing
   custody and even contact with your children."

   ─ Steve Basile, study author


   ---------------------------------------------------------------------
   -----------

   Among the study's findings:

   When compared with other attributes of the litigants, sex was by far
   the greatest predictor of whether or not a restraining order would
   be issued and of the severity of the restrictions imposed on the
   defendant.

   At ex parte hearings, where only the victim is present and the
   defendant is unaware of the proceedings, men were 240% more likely
   than women to be denied the immediate protection of an emergency
   restraining order.

   Women were 38% more likely than men to be granted an emergency
   protection order at an ex parte hearing.

   At follow-up 10-day hearings, when victims seek an extended or new
   restraining order, men were 383% more likely to be denied
   protection.

   Women were 32% more likely than men to be granted a new restraining
   order when protection was pursued at the follow-up10-day hearing.

   Overall, with and without children in common, men were 29% more
   likely to be evicted than women and 110% more likely to be evicted
   if they shared a common child.

   The Fatherhood Coalition is especially concerned about the use of
   209A restraining orders as "first strike" weapons in divorce/custody
   battles.  The study also analyzed court response with respect to
   granting of custody of minor children when the litigants are parents.

   Mothers were 288% more likely than fathers to receive custody of
   children as a direct provision of the 209A order. However, in the
   few cases where fathers received custody, which was only at ex parte
   hearings, none of the fathers secured long-term custody of their
   children at the 10-day hearing.

   According to Basile, "The message couldn't be clearer. If you are a
   father suffering domestic violence, using the legal system to gain
   protection for yourself is a high risk proposition that may result
   in you losing custody and even contact with your children."

   The first phase of the study was published in the Journal in
   February, 2004. That report provided a qualitative analysis of all
   of 382 non-impounded 209A restraining orders issued in the
   courthouse, examining the type and degree of abuses categorized by
   the sex and relationship of the litigants. For both phases, every
   available restraining order docket from 1997 was examined, to
   mitigate against any seasonal abnormalities or any accusations of
   selective sampling. Typically, domestic violence research explicitly
   excludes male victims of female domestic violence.

   While the results of the first phase confirmed that women
   disproportionately seek legal protection from domestic violence, the
   qualitative examination of the data in the dockets, which includes
   the victim's affidavit, showed that the nature of the abuse claimed
   was roughly similar between men and women.

   However, the second phase reveals a disturbingly high correlation
   between the court decisions and the sex of the litigants.

   The study analyzed the response of the court to requests for
   protection at ex parte hearings, where only the victim is present,
   and at the follow-up 10-day hearing.

   209A abuse protection orders grant the "victim" enormous power over
   their alleged abusers.  Provisions include removal from one's own
   home, granting of immediate custody of minor children to the alleged
   victim with a consequent assignment of child support.

   According to Coalition Spokesman Mark Charalambous, "It's important
   to understand that a 209A order taken against a father, besides
   removing all legal and physical custodial rights to his children,
   also extends the no-contact provisions to those children."

   Since a violation of any of the provisions of a 209A order is a
   criminal offense subject to 2 years in jail and $10,000 fine, any
   contact a father may have with his children, direct or third-party
   or even unintentional, holds him criminally accountable. This is
   done without the criminal protections afforded defendants in

   criminal cases because the issuance of 209A order is civil,
   requiring only the minimal standard of evidence ("preponderance").

   "This is why a 209A restraining order is often referred to as the
   nuclear first-strike in the commencement of a divorce action,"
   Charalambous emphasizes.

   The Fatherhood Coalition is supporting the "209A Reform Bill" (S965,
   H833), presently in committee, that addresses many of the law's most
   serious flaws.

   # # #


[/quote]
Even a whole village can't replace dad, children need both parents.

Sir Jessy of Anti

Quote from: "woof"

   At ex parte hearings, where only the victim is present and the
   defendant is unaware of the proceedings, men were 240% more likely
   than women to be denied the immediate protection of an emergency
   restraining order.

   Women were 38% more likely than men to be granted an emergency
   protection order at an ex parte hearing.

   At follow-up 10-day hearings, when victims seek an extended or new
   restraining order, men were 383% more likely to be denied
   protection.

   Women were 32% more likely than men to be granted a new restraining
   order when protection was pursued at the follow-up10-day hearing.



I would like to comment on some of these statistics, without I hope being labeled as devisive.

Consider these statistics.  Without knowing the statistical references, and without being able to view the statistical pool they are bunk.

Yes, I said that, bunk.

For instance, consider the first statistic:

You have 100 men who want an emergency protection order.  Of those 100 men, 10% are granted it.   Now consider....you have 1000 women who want one and 10% who are granted it.  Using statistics that are not normalized (i.e. standardized), women are 10 times (or 1000%) 'more likely' to get a protective order!  The discrepancy however is not necessarily due to bias, it is due to the discrepancy in the number of women vs. men wanting protection orders.

So I guess what I am saying is that I would like to see the raw data before drawing any definite conclusions.
"The man who speaks to you of sacrifice, speaks of slaves and masters. And intends to be the master." -- Ayn Rand<br /><br />

Sir Jessy of Anti

In the above example using normalized statistics, both men and women are _as_ likely to get protection orders.  If anyone can point out the error of my thinking, or if woof could post the source (data) of these statistics that would be great.
"The man who speaks to you of sacrifice, speaks of slaves and masters. And intends to be the master." -- Ayn Rand<br /><br />

Conspiracy Theory

Good call , Sir Jessi.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." ~ Mark Twain

woof

Quote from: "Sir Jessy of Anti"
Quote from: "woof"

   At ex parte hearings, where only the victim is present and the
   defendant is unaware of the proceedings, men were 240% more likely
   than women to be denied the immediate protection of an emergency
   restraining order.

   Women were 38% more likely than men to be granted an emergency
   protection order at an ex parte hearing.

   At follow-up 10-day hearings, when victims seek an extended or new
   restraining order, men were 383% more likely to be denied
   protection.

   Women were 32% more likely than men to be granted a new restraining
   order when protection was pursued at the follow-up10-day hearing.



I would like to comment on some of these statistics, without I hope being labeled as devisive.

Consider these statistics.  Without knowing the statistical references, and without being able to view the statistical pool they are bunk.

Yes, I said that, bunk.

For instance, consider the first statistic:

You have 100 men who want an emergency protection order.  Of those 100 men, 10% are granted it.   Now consider....you have 1000 women who want one and 10% who are granted it.  Using statistics that are not normalized (i.e. standardized), women are 10 times (or 1000%) 'more likely' to get a protective order!  The discrepancy however is not necessarily due to bias, it is due to the discrepancy in the number of women vs. men wanting protection orders.

So I guess what I am saying is that I would like to see the raw data before drawing any definite conclusions.


Jessy, I won't debate what you are saying here, I see your point, and agree with it.
However, they do kind of address that in this statement.

Quote
While the results of the first phase confirmed that women
disproportionately seek legal protection from domestic violence, the
qualitative examination of the data in the dockets, which includes
the victim's affidavit, showed that the nature of the abuse claimed
was roughly similar between men and women.

However, the second phase reveals a disturbingly high correlation
between the court decisions and the sex of the litigants.



I would like to see what they mean by " disturbingly high" however. They don't really spell it out.
Even a whole village can't replace dad, children need both parents.

woof

Also without knowing what "qualitative analysis" means, which I don't, it's hard to tell if this was taken into consideration.
Quote
That report provided a qualitative analysis of all of 382 non-impounded 209A restraining orders issued
Even a whole village can't replace dad, children need both parents.

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