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Dear Senator Lawlor and Others,
I have spent that past 2.5 years fighting the Massachusetts court system to stay in my six year old little girl's life, who I was the primary caretaker.  I used to spend six hours a day with my daughter.  In one week, I am court ordered 6 hours with her.  If you speak to other fathers, this is a luxury custody plan.  Sadly, many fathers don't get to see their children and visa versa. 

I have paid over 20 thousands dollars to Attorney's, but they haven't served my daughter very well. Attorneys won't bite the hand that feeds them. I representd myself for 2 years, but the end results was the same.

New Hampsire, Oregon and many other states are finally taking the initiative to implement some type of shared custody arrangement for the benefit of children.  

When you read the Bill, SB1120, presented to you for shared custody, please do so without blinders.  When  you give  your vote of approval for this bill, know that you are contributing significantly to the health and well-being of the children of our future.  It is time to make a difference in our children's lives and it starts with you and the Joint Committee on Judiciary.  Follow NH, Oregon and all the other states in doing what is right for our children.  Perhaps, Massachusetts will follow.

Why should any child's inherent and inalienable birthright to be with both parents be removed upon divorce?  

Read "Lagging Behind the Times" by Attorney Cynthia McNeely http://www.law.fsu.edu/journals/lawreview/downloads/254/mcneely.pdf 

This is the most legitimate piece of literature regarding the importance of both parents being in children's lives and how the probate and family courts have been severely biased in favor of Mothers.

The following is a quote from an email from Cynthia Mcneely to me regarding my 3 year old daughter at the time:

"Second, you should propose week on, week off custody (doesn't have to be Sunday to Sunday, but could, for example, be Tuesday to Tuesday, or some version thereof), if you live in the same school district or nearby and can take your child to the same school or preschool she would otherwise be attending.  There's no reason why you should have to settle for anything less.  Divorce disturbs the family unit and daily processes, and there's no use pretending it doesn't.  It's more important your child see you regularly than keeping her in one residence with one parent most of the week.  She will adjust to two equal residences."

The children of Connecticut and Massachusetts beg you to vote in favor of shared parenting legislation!

“Although the dispute is symbolized by a 'versus' which signifies  two adverse parties at opposite poles of a line, there is in fact a third party whose interests and rights make of the line a  triangle. That person, the child who is not an official party to the lawsuit but whose well-being is in the eye of the controversy, has a right to shared parenting when both are equally suited to provide it. Inherent in the express public policy is a recognition of the child's right to equal access and opportunity with both parents, the right to be guided and 

nurtured by both parents, the right to have major decisions made by the application of both parents' wisdom, judgement and experience. The child does not forfeit these rights when the  parents divorce." 

 Judge Dorothy T. Beasley, 
Georgia Court of Appeals, 
"In the Interest of A.R.B., a Child," July 2, 1993


Richard Barrett

A Father in Massachusetts who is fighting desperately to stay in his daughter's life!!!