I attended this fatherhood meeting Friday night. It was a town hall platform with many area agencies and other representatives from the community. This was the 6th quarterly meeting and the turn out was lower than previous (so im told)
This guy (normal guy attending the meeting) begins to tell his situation. Without going into every detail, he worked counter-intelligence for the military. The rest of the story is the disconnect the mother had with the child and now he is fighting to get his rights to parent the child. He listed every program that ODJFS told him to do in order to prove he was fit. Every angle he went to told him to do this and that, but when it came time to show progress the courts said that his efforts werent enough and/or hurt his cause somehow. All this after completing what they told him to do.
The ironic part is Dean Sparks goes to these and lead this guy along about getting his kid outta adoption. almost a year later, this guy has tried everything to no avail. Larry Sykes, Mr. Sparks boss, was there and took an interest in this case, seeing it was the first time it was brought before him. Really Dean, thats how you roll. Dean has all kinds of time to make commericials but when it comes to doing work, he is no where to be found.
Dean Sparks is a joke. I have been told this by many people involved with the courts and the child protective services.
That being said, as a divorced man with kids, I can tell you first hand that it is a horror story. I'm not talking about the fathers who could care less if they see their kids or not. I'm talking about the fathers who changed diapers, fed them, and actually raised them 50% with the mother. The courts are set up to fail on the mother's side and often that means the father gets screwed. I could go on for hours about the shaft for the divorced father.
Unfortunately, to get the laws changed it would take someone to stand up and point out that they are not fair. But, everytime that subject is brought up, the example of the womanizing slug that makes babies and bails is used as a guideline for why the father gets screwed.
There is absolutely no law to prevent either parent from using the kids as a weapon in a divorce. And believe me, they do.
Unless Dean Sparks has actual "sparks" in his pocket, he will do nothing about this situation.
The mom is absent and the child is in foster care.
that was my point, dean didnt do anything for this guy for almost a year. Larry Sykes, i think he is on the board of directors, attended his first meeting last night. After listening to his story for 5 minutes, he had stepped in and spoke saying that this matter will be heard and a judgement will be made. Then he hugged the guy. and im sure the guy cried knowing SOMEONE had finally seen his hard work.
What I saw last night was the system working for a father, or at least the first step toward working.
If I was the dad, I'd be grateful, but if Sykes can make something happen quickly, I'd damn sure be looking for reasons why it wasnt brought to his attention sooner. Possibly even thru litigation if he has reason to believe his child suffered during the year.