Together fathers can change the system – our kids & our future depend on it

#21fathers

The statistics are truly shocking!

#21fathers is a social media and public awareness campaign produced by the ABF. The campaign seeks to highlight the truly devastating impact suicide has on Australian families dealing with family access restrictions.

The statistics are truly shocking!

The ABF produced the #21fathers suicide awareness campaign in response to the national emergency that is male suicide, and the connection to child and family access restrictions fathers experience after separation.

The campaign is based on the anecdotal evidence from Lone Fathers Founder (Barry Williams), Dads in Distress and Men’s Rights advocate (Sue Price) who suggested between three and five fathers are taking their lives each day nationally. The focus of the campaign is to highlight the experiences of fathers and their families, while acknowledging the emotional trauma that families experience as they struggle through family access disputes post separation. 

The ABF through the 21fathers campaign references a base number that advocates agree reflects the negative impact of a broken family law system, child support policy and domestic violence laws that betray fathers after separation.

We see the high suicide rates of men as part of an indicator pointing toward a much larger problem that has direct links to failed social policies that have actively devalued the role of men in our society, particular as parents and role models for children.

Domestic violence laws are limiting the ability for families to stay connected by allowing some parents to make false allegations of abuse and violence to deliberately restrict access to children prior to family law proceedings.

The Child Support Agency noted that their contact and dealings with clients struggling with child access issues, combined with the heavy financial burden of child support contributed to the suicide rate of their clients. The agency itself  released specific data as part of their annual reports that linked the suicide of clients to a change of policy in collections. This data is no longer published by the agency due to policy changes on reporting.

Family Courts and the Family Law system is contributing to the death toll by forcing families into bitter and expensive legal battles.

Researchers talk about triggers that lead to suicide suggesting that it takes a number of factors over time to push individuals to take their lives. Studies by Griffith University confirm men are at higher risk of suicide when their relationships end, if we  factor in additional triggers like, Domestic Violence, Financial Abuse and Homelessness we have a pathway to suicide that is enabled by current state and federal government policies.

Emotional triggers that fathers experience after separation that can lead to suicide

  • child access restrictions
  • family and domestic violence
  • false allegations of abuse
  • homelessness
  • property access restrictions
  • financial abuse
  • unemployment
  • contact with law enforcement
  • exposure to the legal system

Time and time again we see injustices perpetrated against fathers from a clearly biased court system and the anti-father child support system, that hides behind the frequently used statement that their actions are in the best interests of children.

In reality this is a terrible lie used to restrict fathers from fair and reasonable contact with their kids. The system instead favours mothers who are able to openly manipulate the process to become the primary custodial parent for either financial gain or simply to maintain a level of control over the noncustodial fathers life.

Fathers taking their lives in Australia because of child access issues, the high costs associated with family law,  pressures from the Child Support Agency, the use of  false allegations of domestic violence and Family Court rulings that are clearly bias toward mothers.

You can help the ABF promote our suicide awareness campaign by using #21fathers in any of your social media posts!

You can also show your support by purchasing ABF merchandise to show those in your community that change needs to happen. Fundraising is directed toward direct action events nationally!