Press Release- Photo Op
Contact: Sandra Ramos. 973-831-0898 or 862-686-2771
Strengthen Our Sisters to Hold Mothers Day Demonstration to Protest Mother's Losing Custody of Their Children to Batterers

On Friday, May 6th , Strengthen Our Sisters will hold their 6th annual Mother's Day demonstration in front of the Passaic County New Jersey Courthouse, 401 Grand Street, Paterson, at 12:00 noon. Joined by mothers all over the world, the demonstration will consist of mothers and their supporters marching with empty baby carriages to protest the trend in court rulings that award custody to batterers and child molesters on a regular basis.

“All too often this happens because batterers can afford high priced attorneys who know how to manipulate the victim and the system. Contrary to popular belief, According to a Presidential Task Force Domestic Violence Report in 1996 ; state's : "70% of Batterers who seek custody of the children get full custody."  Fatherhood Funding receives in excess of $500.000.000.00 to fix bad dad, these funds are diverted and used to take mothers children and give them to the abusive father under the pretense of ‘involving fathers' in their children's lives. Mothers across the Nation call for a Congressional investigation into the failure of family courts to protect children and the potential fraud, waste and abuse of taxpayer dollars. Obama (and Congress) you are killing children with the tax payer's money. STOP FATHERHOOD FUNDING NOW!

During the past two decades, mothers have been losing custody of their children (even nursing infants) in increasing numbers to fathers who are convicted or identified batterers, child molesters, drug addicts, gang-bangers and felons . Family courts force children into the custody of abusive fathers at alarming rates , allowing these men to continue controlling and abusing their victims .

Mothers who stayed in abusive relationships to "protect" their children were charged for 'failure to protect'. Mothers who left their abusers and tried to be "friendly" and co-parent in the face of ' Mandatory Shared Parenting Laws ', lose their children to abuser's and Mother's are being ordered to 'Supervised Visitation' or are completely denied ANY contact with their children.

Sandra Ramos who founded the first shelter for battered women in North America, and who is also a professor at William Paterson University and Ramapo College is asking that people think about what they will be doing on Mother's Day and to try to imagine how they would feel if their own children had been taken from them and placed with dangerous perpetrators. She posed the question, “How would they feel if they had to wake up each morning not knowing what horrors or tortures their children might be enduring, with the knowledge that they could do nothing legally to protect them?” In addition, the mothers are forced to pay child support or go to jail.

“We must raise public awareness about the terrifying power of the courts,” Ramos said. “We have a comprehensive and growing file of cases where children have been taken away from caring non-abusive loving protective parents and placed with the abusive parent. Far too many children have been placed in harms way by court orders. We are asking for re-examination of cases by an unbiased review board when judicial misconduct has been reported.”

  There has been a wide range of interest nationally in this phenomenon and was addressed at the Mother's Custody Conference in Albany, NY in 2011. Ramos who speaks throughout the country and was the keynote speaker at the first World Conference of Women's Shelters says that she has been besieged with calls and reports from mothers who have lost custody, or are in danger of losing custody, everywhere she goes.

"Research shows that half the men who abuse their wives or girlfriends abuse the children too and there is evidence to show that such abuse escalates post separation. Children who grow up with abuse are more prone to behavioral problems, depression, eating disorders, suicide, school failure and increased drop out rates, juvenile delinquency, substance abuse, adult criminality, and are more prone to becoming involved in abusive relationships as adults," says Mo Therese Hannah, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology at Siena College,. Dr. Hannah, whose professional focus is on couples therapy and dynamics of abuse, was the chief organizer of the Mothers Custody Conference.

People are encouraged to bring signs for the protest as well as empty baby carriages. Buttons will be handed out saying “The Court is the Cash Register and Children Pay the Price” , as well as “ Children should be Seen Heard, Believed, and Protected .” People who wish to participate should call, 973-831-0898 or email info@sosdv.org It is hoped mothers will come forth with their own stories which will be filmed at the protest. The event will be filmed by Jackie Aluotto, film producer personified of Pick it Up Pictures. The event will have marching, drumming, singing and a speak out.

Following this demonstration we will be joining the Million Mom March Mother's Day 2011, at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Washington, D.C .Mother's of Lost Children, American Mothers Political Party, Courageous Kids, Mothers For Custodial Justice, Mothers From the East Coast to the West Coast and more Mothers and Organizations are Marching in Washington D.C on Mother's Day, Sunday May 8th, through Monday May 9, 2011.