The Formation of Union of Fathers
Reading through the previous post, NZ Men Fed up with the Family Court, it occurs to me that some history from a few years back may be of interest to some of the commenters.
At the time I arrived on the scene of the Family Court chaos and corruption, the North Shore Men’s Centre had already been formed. I was in Auckland, it was my point of entry, to what was happening at the time.
(Of course, that was in the dark ages, when this site didn’t exist, and Men’s Issues was a good old paper pamphlet post-out that arrived in the mailbox once a month.)
At the same time there were other groups popping up all over the country. (The I’m not putting up with this shit groups) and behind the scenes there was another set of men’s groups that maintained a select, invitation only membership, which the likes of little of moi was never privileged to be invited to, but that’s ok, I don’t think they achieved much, or I missed anything worthwhile.
There was the occasional person that managed to walk that fine line which allowed them to exist in this privileged environment, and keep contact with ‘the undesirables’ – if nothing else there was information available.
It was Jim Bailey (hailed by some and hated by others) that organised a national meeting on the North Shore, that brought about fifteen individuals and representatives of men’s groups from around the country, together in one place.
It was from that meeting that that Union of Fathers (UOF) was born.
Once formed, the organisation grew rapidly, and the names of many people who have never been mentioned here, did an amazing amount of work. There were public meetings in any place there was a dangerous judge, that’s why Napier was such an active place, (and they were well attended) and there were numerous other prongs of attack, from organised meetings with the Family Law Section to loud protests outside courts.
We were a credible organised force, with a nationwide network. We went as far as hiding men and their children in cases that were clearly out of control. That forced the then Principal Family Court Judge Patrick Mahoney into negotiating with us.
This is the stuff that never made the news, but it happened.
Here’s the bottom line. If you want to make a change, you have to get out there as a group, and just do it.
It’s never going to be resolved by discussing the prons and cons on this site.