150 Women, Men, and Kids Showed up in Support of HB 803 Equal Parenting Bill at April 26, 2021 Hearing
by David Bellow on April 29, 2021 at 2:42 PM
The HB 803 hearing showed that the people of Texas want Equal Parenting. Kids are hurting and need equal access to both fit parents. Texas HB 803, the Equal Parenting Bill, deserves a timely vote out of committee for a full floor vote
Parental Equality is the last great frontier of equality, and history will show that the Texas 2020-2021 Juvenile Justice and Family Issue Committee made it happen, or history will show that the committee held it back from happening. And it will happen.
After months of hard work, and 22 bi-partisan co-authors later, we finally got a hearing for Texas HB 803, the Equal Parenting Bill, filed by Representative Mayes Middleton. With a three-day notice, the people of Texas showed up from all corners of the state. The testimony for HB 803 that occurred on April 26, 2021 was emotional and compelling. The only people who opposed the bill were a handful of people involved in the family law industry who have a financial interest vs the 100+ men and women voters from all races and political parties who showed up and stood for Equal Parenting.
The facts and studies are undeniable and they show that kids and parents are hurting under a system of inequality that encourages conflict by starting off all court cases separating kids from one or the other parent. Kids have a right to see both parents equally as long as both parents are fit willing and able.
Good parents should go into family court on equal starting points. It wasn’t that long ago that women didn't even have a right to vote and that took years to change. It will take time to change this too, and just like history will show who opposed equality and voting for women, history will also show who opposed equality for parents and kids.
Although HB 803 got a hearing, it does still need the committee to set the bill for a vote and vote it out to the house floor. Chairwoman Victoria Neave should stand for the people vs. family law profits and lobbyists, and she should set the bill for a vote quickly. Likewise, the committee members should vote to send the Equal Parenting Bill to the floor for an up or down vote.
Why are we ok with the suffering of children who long to see their fit and loving parents, but are torn apart by a family law system that promotes conflict and fighting to try to keep the child from the other parent? This is not about parents and what they want, this is about kids and what they need.