Cross-party anger at platform attack

Oct 2 2004

 By Alison Dargie,

The Journal

Fathers 4 Justice were widely condemned for taking their stunts too far last
night after a member of the campaign threw purple powder at a fellow
 candidate in the Hartlepool by-election.

As a member of Fathers 4 Justice and an active campaigner for children's
rights to have a loving and meaningful relationship EQUALLY with both
parents after divorce or separation, I would like to comment on your

I was in Hartlepool to support Fathers 4 Justice candidate Paul Watson and
witnessed the event as it happened.

When Jody Dunn stood at the microphone for her one minute speech and I saw
Paul's hand reach over her head and slowly pour powder over her, I really
felt her embarrassment, I felt for her and would not wish to put any person
through that experience.

As she walked off stage, without giving her speech, I worried about how she
felt. I felt sick inside my stomach.

For the next few minutes, I thought F4J had made a mistake. I thought we had
crossed the line and fallen into the abyss.

I then thought of all the children , that as a family law barrister, she may
have separated from one of their loving parents and how they felt being
forced away from the ones they love. Emotionally and mentally scarred for
life by people profiting from their misery. I have seen grown men, hard men,
ex soldiers who served in the Gulf war, break down in tears outside courts
and at Fathers 4 Justice meetings / demonstrations at the loss of their
children through the secret family courts and the work of family law
barristers. Men who put their lives on the line for this country only to be
stabbed in the back by the ones they fight to protect and enrich.

Much to everyone's surprise, Paul Watson was not only still on the platform
but introduced and given his 'one minute' at the microphone.

As Paul started to deliver his speech, he was heckled by someone behind me.
They must have felt rather stupid, because for the next three minutes, Paul
delivered a powerful and emotional speech against family law and those who
trade in child and human right abuse for profit, to a silent audience who
listened to every word. He received rapturous applause at the end of his
extended speech and it was not just from F4J members. Some of the other
groups were just as vocal in support as F4J.

Jody Dunn enjoys equality both in working and political life. She got
treated equally on election night.

I doubt Fathers 4 Justice candidates will ever get elected. I doubt many of
our members are interested in becoming MP's. They are interested in being a
part of their children's lives and sending a message to all, that we will
not tolerate the abuse of our human rights and more importantly, our
childrens' rights to be parented equally by both parents.

Every day the government, the courts and the population stand idly by and
allow the destruction of childrens' lives by family law and its ilk, another
100 children have their lives destroyed. The psychological damage
perpetrated on children is immense and is responsible for the declining
standards in society. It is well known that most juvenile crime is due to
children from fatherless homes.

The cost of divorce is quoted at 30 billion pounds per year in the UK, much
of which is funded by taxpayers.

The social cost is immeasurable.

Children from a fatherless home are:

5 times more likely to commit suicide.
32 times more likely to run away.
20 times more likely to have behavioural disorders.
14 times more likely to commit rape
9 times more likely to drop out of high school.
10 times more likely to abuse chemical substances.
9 times more likely to end up in a state-operated institution.
20 times more likely to end up in prison.


Dave Ellison
Dave Ellison

International Co-ordinator
Fathers for Justice:
AOL Messenger: dad4justice