Connecticut State Representative Minnie Gonzalez is a true representative and champion for parents in Connecticut. She is one of the non-lawyers on the Judiciary Committee and is thorough and fearless in questioning judicial nominees. Make sure you watch the Judiciary Committee Public Hearing on Judicial Nominations after reading the background. The video with transcribed excerpts from Gonzalez questioning Attorney Aaron are at the end of the post.
At the April 23rd Judiciary Committee Public Hearing on Judicial Nominations, Gonzalez grills Connecticut Superior Court nominee Attorney Barbara Aaron.
Aaron’s Profile on Berman, Bourns, Aaron & Dembo: Attorney Aaron practices exclusively in the area of Matrimonial Law, with an emphasis on mediation and collaborative practice. She works primarily with high net worth clients who seek to retain their privacy and resolve their cases in a confidential, respectful and efficient process. Attorney Aaron trains other lawyers, mental health and financial professionals in the use of mediation, negotiation and collaborative practice. She currently serves on the executive committee of the Connecticut Bar Association’s Family Law Section and is the current co-chair of the Hartford Family Law Committee.
Attorney Aaron is a life-time Fellow of the Connecticut Bar Foundation James W. Cooper Fellow Program and one of the co-founders and past president of the Connecticut Council for Non-Adversarial Divorce. She is the former chair of the CBA Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee and the immediate past president of the Children’s Law Center of Connecticut.
It sounds so great and charitable but not-for-profit businesses can make a profit while enjoying a tax-exemvpt status. They are not to be organized or operate for the benefit of any private interests, at least not directly and overtly.
Read Understand “Children’s Law Centers” Excerpt Below
Major harm has been done in the name of protecting children, children’s rights, and even “defending children.” It is tempting to report only on that harm, year after year.
I encourage us to focus instead on the systems set up, and how they were set up, by people using the word “Child” or “Children’s” for specific, collaborative, and in general a privately determined agenda.
Ironically, the solutions used to reduce poverty and protect children often end up putting more money in private hands, and — as this is SOMEtimes who’s promoting the various programs — making sure there’s more work for more attorneys at public cost, after the attorneys have collectively decided that more of them means more justice for children.
And it should be resisted when and where the systems, and how they were set up, was done without public approval. I do not want, and we should not want, socialism, or the equivalent of a return to a feudal society. I also personally am NOT in favor of a one-world government under elitist central control; after having already seen where that is heading — i.e., to eugenics, slavery, and genocide. Wars enable takeover of others’ assets and further restructuring of those supporting it and those sent to die in them. ALL of this relates to the economy, and until (again, or anew) more people can think in terms of how to counteract the centralization of government and balance that power — it is not going to slow down, or cease, until dissidence is, basically exterminated (or medicated) into silence.
UNDERSTANDING that inherent dishonesty in privatizing government “for the sake of children” when in fact, this is simply multiplying the ability of those so ethically “low” as to do this, or so arrogant as to believe that what society needs is more of them, and (correspondingly) LESS involved and less representative government (just shut up, pay your taxes, and be acted upon: we will keep the streets safe, the children educated, and the bad guys away….) — JUST MAYBE this will counteract some of the gullible passivity that’s normal for us. Because we can’t figure out an alternative to funding it through our jobs.
Read the rest of this entry »
Attorney Aaron submitted an opposition letter to the Judiciary Committe when she was the Board President of the Children’s Law Center. In it she opposes Eliminating the court’s discretion to order supervised visitation unless there is first finding by DCF of abuse or neglect, Giving “aggrieved parties” the right to bring a civil action against attorneys and GAL’s, Allowing parents to select the Expert(s) for Therapy and Evaluation, and Substitution language to limit testimony and overall role of a GAL. Read letter in its entirety:Raised Bill No. 5505: An Act Concerning Family Court Proceedings
VIEW JUDICIARY CONFIRMATION HEARING
Attorney Aaron said parents involved in high-conflict cases who are critical of the system need to take responsibility for what happens in their cases and how it affects their children. CT’s contentious custody cases: Symptoms of flawed family courts, or outliers? |
Excerpt from the Judiciary Confirmation Hearing
Representative Gonzalez to Attorney Aaron: “Your opinion about all these parents complaining about the system, do you still think the same as 2014?
Attorney Barbara Aaron: “What I thought then and what I think today, is that there are very legitimate concerns about the use of GAL’s and the issues that were raised at that time and before that time. And I shared those concerns They were raised by parents that sought you out, they were raised by you, they were raised by the GAL task force. And I supported those concerns. What I did not support and what I was critical of, was the personal attacks on judges and several lawyers that were not about the issues. And the threats that were being made on judges and lawyers, including lawyers that I know, their families and their children. And I thought that those extreme remarks and those extreme personal attacks clouded and diluted the very serious and important issues that were being raised by you and others at that time.”
Representative Gonzalez: “So you believe that if I’ve got a case in front of a judge and my case has been stalled for 5, 7 10 12 years and I’ve been spending all my resources. Do you think that me coming out and telling the truth and coming to this building and testifying against the judges handling my case, do you think that’s not right?”
Attorney Aaron: “No i support that.”
Representative Gonzalez: “But that’s what everybody was doing. All these parents, they were coming out. All these parents they came out ten years ago or was 11 years ago and they’re still coming. Not those same parents because you see different faces every day. But that’s the reason why they’re coming here. When they went into the court the first time to get divorce and custody trial. They end up homeless, no money and at the end of the case after 10,15 years they didn’t have a penny. They were living out there homeless with family members and some of them, they were living in their cars. So for you to say that it was vicious and those are disgruntled parents. You said the attack against the judges, but it was a group of guardians ad litems and attorneys also has a group that were attacking the parents and calling them names. Like I told you, I read those articles about you, so i think that if it is good for you, it is good for me by being attacked. Nobody was talking about the attack from the court system attacking them and taking everything away from them including the kids. I believe when you lose your kids that’s the last thing in your life. Who cares about something else, come here and testify. That’s why I’m saying. When I was reading those articles about you, you have a lot to say against the families that were fighting for their kids.
For them it is more important how much time they spend with their kids other than stopping the conflict. You don’t think that that’s what all the parents that go to family court to fight for their kids, you don’t think that maybe one of the goals is to spend time with their kids. I know they are not looking for special favors. Listen, If i go to court fighting for my kids I’m going to be fighting for my kids 100% and I’m going to be there every day if i have to. Do you have kids?”
Attorney Aaron: “I don’t.”
Representative Gonzalez: “Losing your kids, that is part of your life and part of your heart. I lost mine and mine I’m not going to be able to have my kid back. But these parents, they have at least, they go and they fight because they think there is hope out there and when they have attorneys like you my god its terrible. Me personally I will say it, you know it’s hard if I don’t have no money, I’m not going to be able to go to you and hire you as an attorney. And with those remarks about the parents, you know telling parents who are critical of the system to take responsibility for what happened in their cases is an insult to every parent who comes to court for resolution and have found themselves stuck in the court system year after year and their financial resources sucked dry. It is insensitive to their deep pain. I want to know if you really believe that parents don’t take responsibility for their cases. Do you really believe that?”
Attorney Aaron: “I believe that the vast majority of parents take absolute responsibility for their cases and for their children. And I believe that whenever it is safe, it is in the best interest of the children to have a relationship, a profound relationship with both of their parents. And I believe that that’s what makes children thrive and that there is no more sacred responsibility for a parent than to take responsibility for their children. And certainly my career and my passion has been to help parents in any way possible, to do just that, to be able to learn and cultivate the skills and the relationship and to navigate the system as best they can in order-so that they can have complete autonomy and not have a judge or a guardian ad litem decide the fate. And I’m absolutely committed to when that’s not possible, for a judge to be profoundly sensitive and caring and compassionate to the struggle of every parent and every human being that appears before that court and to do whatever’s necessary to help those people navigate the system in the most efficient way possible.
I think It is true that I strive to keep parents out of the court system and that is not just wealthy parents, it is through the children’s law center, it is through all of the work that I do, I’m committed to helping people take responsibility so that other people aren’t making decisions for them. And yet when other people have to make those decisions for the myriad of reasons that they do, they should do so applying the facts to the law and in a way that acknowledges the sacredness of that responsibility.”
Representative Gonzalez also questions Aaron regarding the AFCC (AFCC is the Family Court Cartel Operating Under the Guise of “Best Interest of the Child”), Reunification Therapy, and Parental Alienation.
We all need to get at least one representative like Gonzalez on board in each state. It is time to address the family court crisis and stop ignoring parents pleas for help and retaliating against them for standing up for the protection of children. We need our representatives to STAND WITH FAMILIES and AGAINST the family court corporation harming children and families.