Another in an ever-increasing list of shared parenting child custody bills is moving through the Alabama legislature.  Like many others that have passed through other states’ legislatures (both successfully and unsuccessfully) – it is not without its detractors.  Another commonality is that most of the alleged concerns are rooted in issues that are very addressable through the family court.  All these bills do is offer a rebuttable presumption of equal child custody.  These bills commonly allow for two major child custody issues to be addressed:

1 – An alternative agreement struck between cooperative parents.

2 – Hearings to allow for the review and consideration for provable issues questioning one’s parental fitness or provable issues of other dangers that may exist for the children with such an arrangement.

My experiences with many people in this arena are simple:  This is all of the consideration that they have ever asked for and simply never get with the antiquated, discriminatory, and in some cases – unconstitutional child custody laws.  The same issues exist with judges, lawyers, and other players who continue to make billions of dollars off of the family court machine in its current condition.  That condition is decidedly poor.

Alabama Senate Bill SB 196, sponsored by Paul Bussman and co-sponsored by several others, has passed through committee and is moving through the Alabama Senate.  Such a bill will go a long way towards the elimination of making children the endgame for a “dash for the cash.”  Too often, that is what child custody litigation is about.  Equal parenting is also very helpful in preventing the hostile-aggressive parent who would engage in parental alienation activities from being as effective as they would be with the oft-used “primary child custody to mother, every other weekend to father” rulings.  Those rulings are still so much the outcome for divorcing or splitting parents.

From the article: A Bill That Would Change Custody Laws In Alabama Is Causing Controversy

Lane Hamrick has started an online movement opposing the bill saying it’s not in the children’s best interests.

“Make them move their stuff from one house to the next every other week. Every other week they’re with daddy. Every other week they’re with mommy that is so unstable,” said Hamrick.

She also says equal time could mean the child having to change schools from year to year depending on where each parent lives.

Unfortunately for people like Lane Hamrick, an equal parenting arrangement is typically not burdensome for the children and the above are common excuses we see when the subject of giving children equal access to their parents post-divorce is given the consideration it and they deserve.  Obviously, logistics can play a significant role in the arrangement, but for the most part, children should only have to bring their school bags back and forth between homes, which is something that children do every single day when they go to and from school.  That hardly ranks as “unstable.”  Having necessities at each parents’ home is something that most parents will tell you is not an imposition and is normally what is in place.

Detractors also tend to ignore the rather significant negative outcomes for children who have severely limited or no contact with their fathers, which can be identified through a simple internet search at very reliable websites, not the least of which is the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Justice.  Why do I mention this?  The unfortunate reality is a failure to consider equal access to both parents still normally results in the father being pushed the fringes of the children’s lives.

To find your Alabama State Legislators and support this equal parenting bill, visit: The Official Website Of The Alabama Legislature and plug in your zip code.

To read the details of the bill, click here and enter “SB196”: Alabama Legislative System Online

Shared parenting works, folks.  Don’t let the thin arguments to the contrary like those above dissuade you from the reality.  When there are no issues of parental fitness, it’s logistically feasible, and the parents have not agreed to alternative arrangement – the children are entitled to equal access to both fit, loving parents.