men, masculinities and gender politics

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Fathering

State of the World's Fathers

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Involved fatherhood is critical to gender equality and child development, reveals world’s first global fatherhood report
 
Gender equality requires a revolution in the lives of men and boys, and achieving this requires urgent policy changes, MenCare-authored report argues in worldwide launch
 

Are you a man or woman who has been affected by discrimination in the workplace related to pregnancy, parental leave and return to work following parental leave?

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On 22 June 2013, the Attorney-General’s Department asked the Australian Human Rights Commission to conduct a national review on the prevalence, nature and consequences of discrimination in relation to pregnancy at work and return to work after parental leave.

Separated Fathers and the ‘Fathers’ Rights’ Movement (Journal article)

Separated fathers often feel profound grief, distress, and anger at the end of their relationships with their partners and their children. Some participate in ‘fathers’ rights’ groups, a movement which claims to advocate on behalf of men and fathers who are the victims of discrimination and injustice in the Family Court and elsewhere. Yet such groups may do little to help fathers heal or to build or maintain ongoing and positive relationships with their children. Some men do find support in these groups, but they also may be incited into anger, blame, and destructive strategies of litigation. The fathers’ rights movement prioritises formal principles of equality over positive parenting and the well-being of women and children. Some groups seem more concerned with re-establishing paternal authority and fathers’ decision-making related to their children’s and ex-partners’ lives than with actual involvements with children. However, other responses to separated fathers are more constructive.

Fathers' rights (encyclopedia entry, 2007)

‘Fathers’ rights’ refers to organized groups or networks of fathers who act in support of the collective interests of fathers, especially separated fathers whose children do not reside with them. Fathers’ rights (hereafter ‘FR’) groups are active particularly in lobbying for changes in *family law.
FR is defined by the claim that fathers are deprived of their ‘rights’ and subjected to systematic discrimination as men and fathers, in a system biased towards women and dominated by feminists. FR groups overlap with *men’s rights groups and both represent an organised backlash to feminism. While other networks also promote fathers’ involvement in families, the FR movement is distinguished by its *anti-feminist discourse of men or fathers as victims. At the same time, FR perspectives do have a wide currency across the political spectrum.

Allowing Men to Care: Fatherhood Project in South Africa

In South Africa, men are increasingly rejecting widespread stereotypes of manhood by stepping forward to challenge gender roles that compromise their well-being and the health of their partners and their families. This case study documents the Sonke Gender Justice Network’s Fatherhood project, which was designed to reduce HIV transmission and address related problems, such as gender-based violence, women’s overwhelming burden of care, and the preponderance of children in need of care and support.

See http://www.icrw.org/publications/allowing-men-care for the report regarding this work.

Fact Sheet #2: The myth of women’s false accusations of domestic violence and rape and misuse of protection orders

Myth:

  Women routinely make up allegations of domestic violence and rape, including to gain advantage in family law cases. And women use protection orders to remove men from their homes or deny contact with children.

Facts:

  • The risk of domestic violence increases at the time of separation.
  • Most allegations of domestic violence in the context of family law proceedings are made in good faith and with support and evidence for their claims.
  • Rates of false accusations of rape are very low.
  • Women living with domestic violence often do not take out protection orders and do so only as a last resort.
  • Protection orders provide an effective means of reducing women’s vulnerability to violence.

'Fathers' rights' and the defence of paternal authority in Australia

Feminism’s achievements regarding violence against women are a key target for the fathers’ rights movement. This article provides an overview of the impact of the fathers’ rights movement on men’s violence against women. It documents the ways in which fathers’ rights groups in Australia have influenced changes in family law, which privilege parental contact over safety, particularly through moves toward a presumption of children’s joint residence. They have attempted to discredit female victims of violence, to wind back the legal protections available to victims and the sanctions imposed on perpetrators, and to undermine services for the victims of men’s violence.

A Request to Men’s Organizations and Allies for Support of Protective Child Custody (in English, Spanish, and French)

Male supremacist groups (“Father’s Rights”) have caused unspeakable harm to our country and to our children by encouraging abusive fathers, often with little past involvement with their children, to seek custody as a tactic to pressure a mother to return or to punish her for leaving. The following call for support comes from the US-based National Organization for Men Against Sexism (NOMAS).

For further discussions of 'fathers' rights' groups, see some of the pieces in XY's collection on 'men's and fathers' rights'.

Raising boys? Help yourself to some gender stereotypes

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Steve Biddulph’s bestseller on bringing up boys takes us on a trip back to the 19th century.