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NZ lags well behind Australia

Filed under: Law & Courts — Vman @ 4:39 pm Thu 22nd April 2010

The New Zealand Family Court is at least 8 years behind Australia and this gap is growing.
Have a read of this article from the Sydney Morning Heard published in Oct 1996.

Since then these changes and also changes to Child Support have been made in Australia. The judiciary are only slowly changing but they are changing. It is harder for mothers to relocate, more shared parenting decisions are being made and there is a much more equitable child support scheme.

There remains very strong opposition to these changes in Australia – particularly from within the divorce industry and feminist groups. They are fighting back but most likely they are fighting against the tide. Over the next 10 years more and more fathers will remain part of their children’s lives in Australia.

The New Zealand Family Court by comparison is woefully backward in it’s thinking. The general environment in the wider community is still strongly feminist and there is no acknowledgement of the widespread social dysfunction this is having on Kiwi children and their fathers.

One of the most concerning aspects of the NZ Family court is the refusal to admit anything is wrong or any mistakes have been made in the past. This is deeply troubling because an institution that lacks the integrity to identify mistakes also lacks the ability to learn from those mistakes. In fact judges and lawyers base all their actions on precedents. In other words the vast majority of the time they repeat the mistakes they made before rather than learning from the negative outcomes those mistakes created.

There is no attempt to fins out the consequences of the Courts decisions.

For example the NZ Family Court is trying to convince people it is addressing the problem of how long it takes to get a decision on custody. Yet it never acknowledges why this is a problem. What difference does it make how long things take? The Court doesn’t want to discuss this because it will open up a Pandora’s box of failings of the court and it’s process.

For example as far as I am aware there is never any formal segregation of the conflict that the family court lawyers have generated themselves. This is a fundamental failing of the NZ family courts. So called “conflict” is used to prevent the father caring for his children. Hence all a lawyer for the mother has to do is ferment and maintain conflict for the client. Job done. Yet there is no part of the process that addresses this strategy. It is a no brainier to fix. All the court needs to do is create a directive that conflict needs to be shown to exist separate to proceedings and separate to any correspondence from lawyers.

By failing to acknowledge what the issues are – even when they are blindingly obvious – the NZ Family Court will never be able to improve itself in any substantive way. An outside body is required to monitor and improve the process based on positive long term outcomes for children.

“The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers”.
-William Shakespeare
Henry VI (Part 2), (Act IV, Scene II).


  1. It does not surprise me that we are behind Australia.

    The Child Support Act 1991 has not cuaght up with the times here in New Zealand and needs to be brought into line with the Care of Children Act 2004.

    I believe the Child Support Act 1991 was drawn up at a time by people who were affiliated with feminist groups where mothers had the majority of the cases had Custody and Fathers were portrayed to be Wife bashers, child molestors and monsters in society back in the late eighties hence why the Child Support Act 1991 is outdated to reflect the society of today where Fathers are very proactive and have a positive impact on our Childrens lives today with more Contact.

    Comment by Train Driver — Thu 22nd April 2010 @ 8:26 pm

  2. I don’t know why we compare ourselves to other countries!

    Comment by Scott B — Thu 22nd April 2010 @ 9:52 pm

  3. Any analysis of abuse of men and their kids has to start with a sentence that includes term “feminist dictatorship”.
    If not, we see lack of understanding of basic facts about the world around us.

    Comment by Ivan Zverkov — Sat 24th April 2010 @ 12:57 pm

  4. Any analysis of abuse of men and their kids has to start with a sentence that includes term “feminist dictatorship”.

    I’m glad you raise this Ivan because I think it is an important, though misguided, point.

    In trying to achieve anything, whether it is corporate performance, mountain-climbing or some lesser personal ambition, we do better to visualise where we want to be in the future – not where we don’t want to be. What we choose to focus on is as influential to our destination as tracks are to a train – consider what happens when you’re driving and you concentrate on the oncoming lane. You drift toward it, even though consciously that’s not where you want to go.

    It may well be true that certain aspects of Western life make the form of a ‘feminist dictatorship’ visible – much as the position of some stars in the night sky give the appearance of a Scorpion – but if that form is what you concentrate on, that’s what your mind will concern itself with. For the night-watcher, he will start looking for more perfect shapes and other animals to be found in the stars, and ignore things that would have given him a more meaningful understanding of the stars themselves.

    There are a lot of other shapes besides feminist dictatorship that one can identify out of the mass of confusing facts, fictions and news articles that we are swamped with. Some feminists genuinely see a patriarchy. Some amongst us see conspiracies to depopulate the world, some see a New World Order, others see a shadowy bunch of bankers and Jews. And once they latch onto it, that’s all they see.

    Personally, I think that’s the very definition of willful ignorance and it arises out of choosing to concentrate on what we don’t want. Maybe we do it because it’s easier than trying to imagine what we actually do want – after all, that requires imagination, whereas the former only requires our scorn. And maybe we make our job even harder because we try to imagine a perfect world and find ourselves not equal to it, whereas aiming lower – a better world in some small way – is good enough.

    The guys that are making some headway are the ones that have latched onto a simple, single issue, visualised a better way of dealing with it, and set themselves the task of bringing that better vision into existence.

    It’s not as if there’s a shortage of issues of concern to men that need to be righted. All any of us needs to do is pick one and set about fixing it.

    Comment by rc — Sat 24th April 2010 @ 2:03 pm

  5. For: rc

    To understand the world, you have to have names for objects and relationships around you. Otherwise, it’s just a starry sky, a confusion.

    Comment by Ivan Zverkov — Sat 1st May 2010 @ 2:01 pm

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