Narrator: This is Science Today. When it comes to custody battles between biological and non-biological parents, family law should focus more on children's rights. Mary Ann Mason, a social welfare expert at the University of California, Berkeley explains.
Mason: We have to move away in our attitudes about parent's rights to looking to the interest of the children. Call it children's rights if you want, and not look at the biological tie. Rather to look at the parenting connection. How, from a child's point of view it would feel. What would be the voice of a child in these circumstances?
Narrator: Mason says the focus should be on actual parenting skills, not blood ties.
Mason: I think a basic right of child is toward good parenting, towards stability, toward continuity of parenting and that would handle a lot of these blood problems versus non-biological parents in the issues of stepfamilies and visitation and issues of adoption of the blood parent coming in from out of the woodwork to claim the child, etc.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.