SC group pleads for children’s rights in Family Divorce Courts

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David Hucks
David Hucks
David Hucks is a 12th generation descendant of the area we now call Myrtle Beach, S.C. David attended Coastal Carolina University and like most of his family, has never left the area. David is the lead journalist at

Group works to ensure legislation for Equal Shared Parenting

In South Carolina, the day before a parent signs a decree of divorce, the child has equal access to both parents. One day after, he or she does not.

Last night, Mark Ludwig, the founder of held a meeting in Columbia, S.C. to honor locals and S.C. legislators who are fighting for these children’s rights.

After his own experience and learning of other parents who had been relegated to weekend visitors in their children’s lives, Ludwig decided to use his background in politics and team building to effect change at the state and federal level, forming coalitions of organizations around the country.

In order for children to have equal access to both able and willing parents, Americans For Equal Shared Parenting (AFESP) was founded.

Perhaps the most inspiring speaker of the night was S.C. Representative Gil Gatch. Gatch spoke of the need for families to forgive even the current unjust Family Court system in S.C. He stressed the need for parents to forgive one another and focus on the rights and the quality of life of their children. Gatch spoke of due process of law. He stated that in Family Court, children and parents were not allowed due process as they are in criminal court. Due process ensures that a person is innocent until proven guilty. In Family Court, the judge is judge, jury, and enforcer of laws that have worked to destroy families for several generations.

Representative Gatch is a strong proponent of Equal Shared Parenting in S.C. The presumption of equal shared parenting takes the motivation of money out of the family court process.

Money is the key motivating factor for trial lawyers who make over $50 billion nationally from family court matters. S.C. Trial Lawyers are a main reason the current legislation is tied up in committee. Should the Equal Shared Parenting legislation make the S.C. House Floor, it is certain to pass.

Horry County local John Gallman was honored by State Rep. Stewart Jones for his efforts to help bring about Equal Shared Parenting in S.C. Like so many others, Gallman experienced negative consequences from the flawed S.C. family court system. Gallman stated he chose to turn his pain into purpose. For the entire year, when he was wrongfully denied visitation with his children, Gallman coached youth basketball and visited Juvenile facilities each Sunday, bringing pizzas to those affected.

After the family court system milked Gallman for a huge fortune in legal fees, it finally relented, allowing him restored access to his son and daughter. Representative Gatch calls this ongoing, expensive tragedy “cash for kids”. Gatch himself is a family court lawyer and very familiar with the system.

In attendance was Amul P of the Fathers Rights Movement. Said Amul, “We do not have a nation full of dead beat dads. We have a nation of fathers who are dead from the ruling of family courts . We can not take our children’s right to both parents away . We simply must change the narratives to encourage equal parenting time and responsibilities so our children win in life.

Added Amul, “So our children will succeed by examples of love and forgiveness 🙏. No one is perfect but God, let’s remind our family court we are human and our children need us. Equal parenting time and custody is vital to this nation’s future.

Also in attendance was Kisasi Swan, Sr. Project Manager at ProWest Roofing of Phoenix Arizona. Said this Father, “Family courts are no better than the alienating parents that are keeping a child away from the parent that’s fighting to see their child.

Said Host, Mark Ludwig, Executive Director Americans for Equal Shared Parenting,“The family law courts are set up in an adversarial, winner-take-all system in which one parent becomes the superior, custodial parent while the other is relegated to an every other weekend visitor to the child. In order to gain the upper hand the weapon of choice has become what is referred to as the Silver Bullet. A false allegation is raised against the other parent in order to gain the upper hand. There is no due process with this in the Family Court arena. No cross examination of witnesses. In many cases not even knowing who made the allegations. Instead the defending parent is forced to try to prove a negative. When a skunk leaves an area the stench remains long after. Much as the case with a false allegation. Even after the allegation is proven false the stigma remains with the accused. And sadly there are no repercussions for false allegations in Family Court. One CPS worker I personally spoke with told me that in 9 out of 10 abuse cases he investigates, the charges appear to be blatantly false if in the middle of a custody dispute. So lives are destroyed as a result of the silver bullet. And the one out of 10 who are truly being abused are not taken seriously.

Ludwig and Gatch gave several “how to helpers” for parents who want to ensure Equal Shared Parenting becomes law in S.C.

Ludwig currently operates in 29 states and says he fully believes that Equal Shared Parenting will ultimately become the law of the land in S.C.

As we reported in February, 93% of S.C. Republican voters want judicial reform.

A Change Is Gonna Come

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