Wheels for Crystal
Organized by: Judy Rucker
In May of 2014, Crystal entered into court ordered remediation of child support in Broward County, FL with the father of her two oldest children. The process should have been a simple re-adjustment of support. Unfortunately, due to the actions of her ex-husband, it has become a long and protracted process of legal actions and delays which are ongoing. This has created an intense hardship on Crystal and her children. Crystal is the parent with majority custody of the children. Crystal’s ex-husband is the major owner of multiple businesses in several cities of Broward and Miami-Dade County Florida. He has taken a stance, through his actions and comments, and use of his extensive funds, to create the greatest financial hardship possible for the mother of his children. Unfortunately this ongoing action of attrition is affecting more than just Crystal. During the lack of progress over the last 14 months, Crystal has been forced from her minimal apartment in Pembroke Pines. Due to a school switch decision, initiated by her ex-husband during the last school year, Crystal suffered even more. The price of this excessive commuting, beyond the fuel and time, was the loss of her vehicle, in an accident not of her fault. Though the loan was covered, it left her with no funds to apply to another vehicle. Crystal didn't give up but instead took on greater expense, renting vehicles to make the commute. In January of 2015, she entered into the application and proving process, to settle her into assisted housing for single, working moms. The final approval in May allowed her to move into an apartment, based on her income, not on the going rates in the community. This program required her to move to Lake Worth, FL from Pembroke Pines. Crystal held strong and took on the challenge, waking early, getting the kids around and dealing with the commute in morning rush hour traffic. She would then go onto work, picking the children up after school hours, repeating the drive back to Lake Worth. In June of 2015, Crystal informed her ex-husband of her wish to enroll the children in a school close to her. His reaction was to move his household a greater distance from her, as far west as one could go in Broward County without actually living in the everglades. His move put the distance between households at 52 miles apart. On August 5, with little discussion on the impact to the children, the court in Broward dictated that the children would be enrolled in a school within 3 blocks of the ex-husbands new home. This court order has created a situation, whereby Crystal has to either give up her affordable housing, and the incentives for affordable childcare, moving closer to her ex-husbands residence, including bearing the full cost of that move. His residence is in an upscale community without affordable housing anywhere close to the school. Or she can do a commute that works out to approximately 1,300 miles a month. This order has put the entire burden for transportation to and from school and parental exchange on Crystal, the parent with minimal funds. In order to comply with the order, Crystal must purchase transportation before August 20. School begins on August 24th and Crystal is required to have a vehicle prior to the start time. Priority of funds will be directed to the purchase of a used vehicle that will safely transport Crystal and her children. The intention is to put Crystal and the children into a vehicle that will not burden her already meager income with payments. If there are additional funds left from the funding drive, these will be applied toward an account for expenses related to the vehicle. Please help us to help Crystal continue to stand up for her children against great odds.