Kids to be denied their Fathers, because of ONE Man’s vote – Tony Windsor

July 20, 2011

Please read the following letter that was sent to Tony Windsor, Federal Member for New England, on the proposed 2011 child custody/family law changes currently before Parliament, designed to prevent most separated fathers from having contact with their children. The office of Tony Windsor has made it clear to me that they do not care to respond to the serious issues confronting separated fathers and children of separated families, despite being given ample opportunity to do so in response to this letter, and in previous discussions.

Because of their condescending and dismissive attitude, I now publish
this letter, unfortunately without any official response from Tony

The attitude of his staff has given me the impression that Tony Windsor
has sold out his beliefs on shared parenting, since he has jumped into
bed with Julia Gillard and the Greens.

I consider Tony Windsor’s actions to be a total betrayal of the natural
rights of the children of Australia, and I feel ashamed on his behalf
that he didn’t even believe that this issue deserved an explanation,
much less a simple response.

Please feel free to distribute this letter to any print, radio or other
media outlets in Australia, and in particular in Tony Windsor’s
electorate of New England, including the regional centers of Tamworth,
Inverell and Armidale.
From: Ash Patil
To Tony Windsor
Parliament Ph: (02) 6277 4722
Tamworth: Toll Free: 1300 301 839
Inverell: (02) 6721 0144
Federal Member for New England
PO Box 6022, House of Representatives
Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600
CC: Tamworth, Armidale & Inverell & other media
Dear Mr Tony Windsor,

You may recall that we corresponded back in November 2005, whereby I
wrote you, as I did for every other Member of Parliament, to ask for
your thoughts on Family Law reform.

Specifically, you were asked for your views on a Rebuttable Presumption
of Equal Parenting Time, given the enormous community support for Shared
Parenting, and in response to the recommendations by the Hull
bi-partisan (Coalition/Labor) Child Custody committee, after 3 years of
intensive community consultation.

We appreciated your response to our questions back in 2005 Mr Tony
Windsor, whereby you not only indicated that you supported Shared
Parenting as a concept, but you highlighted your support for even
stronger measures that would enforce a Presumption of Equal Parenting

On November 4, 2005, YOU wrote:

“On a personal basis, I would not be opposed to an amendment to the
Family Law Act to incorporate a legal presumption of equal parenting
time in the event of separation, rebuttable if child abuse can be
reasonably substantiated, or if the parent’s mutually agree to an
alternate arrangement.

Should the feedback from the residents of the New England Electorate
differ from my own view I would have to re-examine my position however
to date the comments I have been receiving have generally been in line
with my own views on this matter.

Thank you once again for writing to me and I hope the foregoing will clarify my position on this issue.

Tony Windsor MP
Member for New England
Yours sincerely

It was therefore a complete shock that we learned that on the 31st May,
2011, you voted with the Gillard government and the Greens to pass what
is widely believed to be a Trojan-Horse bill designed in practice to
deny fathers any form of meaningful contact with their children after
separation. The bill was passed by one vote ONLY.

This bill, deceptively called the Family Violence Amendment bill, 2011,
is not only anti-Shared Parenting, it is in fact anti-Contact, as it
legally endorses Perjury, Parental Alienation and Unsubstantiated 
Allegations as legitimate means to deny a child their natural right to
have any contact at all with their father.

The obvious question Mr Windsor is why did you support this bill, a bill
that goes against your own personal beliefs, and those quite clearly of
your constituents (then and now)? Were you perhaps distracted by all
the attention and the extra roles lavished on you by a Gillard
government desperate for your support, that you let this most malicious
bill pass without due scrutiny?

You must be aware that the bill you have voted for explicitly:

  • creates an effective presumption of guilt against innocent fathers
  • makes conclusive evidence, especially in defence of abuse claims, subservient to subjective beliefs
  • removes penalties against knowingly false allegations of child abuse & domestic abuse
  • provides tacit encouragement for Parental Alienation by removing the ‘friendly parent’ provision
  • perpetuates the offensive and unfounded stereotype that men are a natural threat to their children
  • perpetuates  the untruth that Shared Parenting exposes children to child
    abuse. In fact, shared parenting households are statistically the
    safest environments for children.
  • perpetuates the unfounded presumption that mothers are unable to harm or abuse their children
  • perpetuates the unfounded presumption that women never engage in domestic abuse
  • has so diluted the concept of domestic abuse, that it can be applied to
    any form of behaviour, whether it is real, innocent and benign,  or
    completely imagined;
  • contravenes the United Nations Convention on the rights of the Child by
    denying the child their right to participate ‘meaningfully and fully’
    with both their mother and their father.
  • contravenes the International Bill of Human Rights by denying fathers their right to a fair trial
  • violates Sex Discrimination standards, by procuring laws designed to
    only protect half the population from domestic violence, while ignoring
    or dismissing the other half.
  • has slashed funding for post-separation mediation to force parents back into the Court system
  • will in effect divert seriously scarce child protective resources from
    their primary task of genuine child protection, to that of chasing up
    legally motivated allegations.
  • will promote sole maternal custody, which according to the Australian
    Institute of Criminology, accounts for almost 80% of all familial child

Shame on you!

Mr Windsor, you are married man and a father with 3 children. You may
very well have an optimal relationship with your wife, but you like
every other human would have at times had tensions and disagreements
with your wife. You should realise that if you had separated (when your
children were young), that even a decent father as yourself would have
been completely removed from your children’s lives, if relied upon this

There is simply no reasonable reason why laws designed to reduce the
incidence of domestic violence, cannot also respect the human rights and
natural justice of men, women and children.

Given that over half your electorate are males and children, you have an
obligation to seriously consider the implications of this bill, if
passed by the Senate.

This bill will not reduce the heat of divorce. It will not encourage
mediation and agreement. It would not share the burden of child raising.
It will not promote equality for women. It will only further
disenfranchise already maligned fathers, creating the potential for more
People will be asking why the government chose again to promote a
“winner-takes-all”, litigation-intensive, archaic, punitive set of laws
designed for mass punishment, in the hope that it would instil fear,
enforce compliance and subdue violence.

This form of mass punishment has not worked in Egypt, it has not worked in Syria, and it will not work in Australia.

We need laws that apply to all Australians and encourage co-operative
parenting, reduce litigation and the enormous legal bills that destroy
the future of our children, and we need all Australians to be judged by
the one standard, the one law, not selective laws depending on one’s

We are all equal after all, right, so why is this bill designed to only protect one gender?

If this bill is passed, the next father or mother who either suicides or
commits a tragedy against their children, people across Australia will
be wondering what pushed them over the edge.

This bill is an opportunity to make a genuine effort to diffuse
separations, not to create more reasons for people to lash out at a
system that has completely betrayed half of all Australians.

Please take this opportunity to re-think this poorly thought-out bill.
Please tell us what you can do to amend this most malicious bill, before
it’s too late. Please do not tell us that since you thoughtlessly voted
for it, then you can now wash your hands and do nothing.
We understand that you can influence the final vote in the Senate, if
you show an interest. You can otherwise not blame fathers and children
for holding you and others like you responsible for taking Australian
families back to the dark ages in family law, for you had that final
vote that could have amended this bill into something workable, but
chose not to.

We would appreciate a written response within 7 days of the posting of this letter.

Ash Patil

–end of letter to Tony Windsor, Federal Member for New England–

Source: Kids to be denied their Fathers, because of ONE Man’s vote – Tony Windsor (


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