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Public Papers - 1992

Statement on Signing Legislation on Child Custody Litigation


Today I am signing into law H.R. 1253, a bill that provides for research and training materials to assist State courts in child custody litigation involving domestic violence.

Domestic violence is a serious problem in our Nation. Each year more than 3 million women are the victims of domestic violence. Much of this violence is witnessed by children, often with devastating and far-reaching emotional and psychological consequences.

Many battered women eventually divorce their husbands. But spousal abuse does not always end with divorce. In fact, the abuse can become worse, especially in connection with child custody litigation.

H.R. 1253 takes an important step in addressing this problem. The bill authorizes the funding of up to five projects to investigate and carry out research regarding State judicial decisions in child custody cases that involve domestic violence. The legislation also authorizes the development and dissemination of training materials to assist State courts in formulating appropriate responses in such cases.

This legislation will help send a strong message about our commitment both to combatting domestic violence and to ensuring that the children of battered women are raised in safe, loving, and nonabusive environments. I am pleased to sign H.R. 1253 and commend its sponsor and cosponsors for their foresight and concern.

George Bush

The White House,

October 27, 1992.

Note: H.R. 1253, approved October 27, was assigned Public Law No. 102 - 528.

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