SHE SAID IT
"Our hope is vigorous and active and it is sustained by the outrageous courage of our sisters/foresisters who are ever more intensely present to us, beckoning and daring us to move further." - Mary Daly

June 1999
Vol. 1 - #4


Said It: Feminist News, Culture & Politics  

in this issue:

Unromanticizing Fatherhood

Who's Looking Out for Moms?

Resisting Without Violence


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Who's Looking Out for Moms?
by Adriene Sere

Where are the organizations fighting for mother's rights? There's gotta be something, I thought, so I began a search, starting with the Community Service pages of the phone book.

Not much for moms listed under "Women's Services." But the father's rights are listed in abundance under "Men's Services:" There is Dads Against Discrimination, Father's Advocate, United Fathers of America, and Washington Families For Non-custodial Rights.

From the United Fathers' brochure: "We provide a carefully crafted strategy for working through the court system to maximize your chances of success. We have a team of counselors, each of whom has a particular area of expertise, who work together in an integrated effort to help you succeed."

The brochure from Dad's Against Discrimination promises ample resources for fathers, including the advice, "Don't give money or support payments to your wife if she is on welfare," and the "encouraging" case histories where "non-custodial fathers have won custody...where the mother was found to be unfit because she made false allegations of sexual abuse against the father."

Who is standing up for mother's rights? There's got to be some mother's rights organization of some sort, someone to advise, encourage, advocate for mothers while fathers, including child molesters, are getting an army of well-funded support.

I called Seattle NOW. No, they've got their hands full. The nice activist who called me back suggested some other women's organizations, like Northwest Women's Law Center.

I called Northwest Women's Law Center. No, they can only mail out a package of helpful information. Can they suggest an organization I could call? They suggest NOW. Then they suggest the Seattle Women's Commission.

The Seattle Women's Commission also has their hands full: homelessness, workplace harassment, child care, harassment in public schools. They suggested New Beginnings.

I called New Beginnings. New Beginnings, only one of two battered women's shelters in Seattle, does advocate for battered women who use the shelter. They also turn away 16 battered women for every woman they have room to shelter. Of course, they don't have the resources to advocate for the rights of any mom who needs them, not like these men's groups offer fathers, batterers and non-batterers alike.

Aren't there any groups specifically for mothers? I ask again, and again, and again.

Well, sure there are, I am told. There is Mothers Against Drunk Driving. There is Mothers for Police Accountability. There is Mothers Against Violence In America.

Mothers are busy organizing, looking out for, and taking care of just about everyone else.

But who is organizing and looking out for the rights of moms?

________________________________________

Copyright © 1999 Adriene Sere - All rights reserved by author.
All work contained in Said It is owned by the respective contributing authors or artists,
including all copyrights contained therein, and may not be copied, reprinted, or otherwise used
in any form without the express written permission of the copyright holder.



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