Wow, what a few weeks. Parkinson’s Taskforce Release of suggested reforms, Four Corners, Fatherhood Forum 05, The Lonefathers Conference, the Attorney General’s release of suggested reforms.

Receiving a beautiful plaque from the Fatherhood Forum in Parliament House for our DIDs work.  My son telling me he is proud of me, my daughter sending me an email of how wonderful she thinks I am, doing the work I do. That she loves me. Do you hear that? That she loves me.

My ten-year-old son left a message on my whiteboard in my office: I ♥ Dad so much, and he drew a couple of stick figures of him and me. I am an every-second-weekend dad, and I have to tell you I find that tough. So does he. But it’s better than some who have none. Of all the things that have happened to me in the past year, those above are the most important.

I look up at the beautiful glass plaque proudly displayed above my computer, which was presented to me by the Fatherhood Forum in Parliament House, that reads:

“Presented to Tony Miller — In recognition of his leadership & compassion for Australian fathers & families.”

You know what, I don’t deserve it. I said at the time I accept this award on behalf of all the volunteers that work in this organisation: all the guys who listen on the phones, who man the meetings, who answer the emails, who just by being there and offering a hand up to some guy less fortunate than them, save lives. Those awesome fathers I hear in meetings all over the country — who just want to be Dad. They are the guys who deserve this award. The Lifesavers. The dads. It really needs to be broken into little pieces and given to each and every one of them.

You know, I said at the beginning of this year that this would be the year of the father, Dad’s year, and I firmly believe that’s exactly what it’s been so far. For the first time in the history of this country, Dad is being recognised politically as being of real value in his children’s lives, regardless of divorce or separation. It wasn’t there before. Believe me.

Finally, people are talking about the value of fathers in the day-to-day lives of their children. It wasn’t there before. Today the hottest issue on the agenda is the fatherhood issue.

Dads are walking a little taller today because of the efforts of many in the field — many politicians, many journalists, many mums, dads, grandparents and children who have had enough of such a flawed system.

It has been your combined effort that has us finally sitting at the table discussing the issues with those that make the decisions. Let’s not lose sight of that.  And let’s make that count.

Just a couple of days ago, the Attorney-General released the Government’s response to ‘Every Picture Tells a Story: A new family law system’. Take the time to read it. You can download it from here.  Take the time to write to the Attorney-General or your local MP, and voice your satisfaction or dissatisfaction. Let them know how you feel about it.

If you truly wish for reform in this country, then this Government is giving you the opportunity to be a part of that reform. Tell them. This is your opportunity, don’t let it pass. Every letter, every email signals 100 votes. So tell them how you feel, and please don’t send form letters because they don’t get read. Tell them from your heart how you feel. Tell them in your words. Write to:

Attorney-General’s Department Central Office
Robert Garran Offices
National Circuit, Barton, ACT 2600

You have never been given a bigger opportunity to reform a system that will deliver dad back to his children — take it!

[Image: MTaratun/BigStock]

About the Author: Tony Miller

Tony Miller was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in the 2010 Queen's Birthday honors list 'For service to the community through the provision of support services for separated families'.

Leave A Comment