Families Need Fathers gave evidence today to the House of Commons DWP Select Committee

Press Release - 16th November 2016

Families Need Fathers gave evidence today telling the House of Commons Select Committee Inquiry into child support that the DWP's Child Maintenance Service (CMS) programme - introduced in 2012 to replace the CSA - is far too simplistic and harsh, often forcing poorer non-resident parents into poverty in the callous manner employed by some payday loan companies – even if the children are cared for by their fathers for almost half the time.

FNF has submitted to the committee that the charity's biggest ever member survey had revealed many fathers who wanted to be good parents but were driven to the brink of suicide by the combination of child-related benefits allocations and the primitive formulaic income assessments by the CMS.

After watching the 75 minute evidence session Jerry Karlin said, "We tried to convey to the Committee the absurdity of a system which purports to meet its own objectives and yet driving separated parents further apart and destroying relationships between children and parents by giving financial incentives to both parent to exclude each other from spending time with their children"

The Select Committee also took evidence in camera from 2 non-resident parents about their experience of the CSA/CMS and their resultant fall into poverty.

Video recording of meeting

Note to editors:

The complete submission to the select committee containing our consultation findings, including further quotations from respondents can be downloaded here. Details of the inquiry can be found here. 

The FNF survey of members and supporters across the UK drew 810 responses to an online survey results received between 5th and 26th September 2016.

For comment, case studies or information please contact: media@fnf.org.uk or call Michael Lewkowicz on 0300 0300 110.

Families Need Fathers - because both parents matter
FNF is a registered charity providing information and support on shared parenting issues arising from family breakdown, and support to divorced and separated parents, irrespective of gender or marital status. FNF is NOT a fathers' rights group - we support the best interests of children - namely mature and collaborative parenting by both parents - an objective which is inadequately promoted in the family court system and associated services.

Our primary concern is the maintenance of the child’s meaningful relationship with both parents.

Founded in 1974, FNF helps thousands of parents every year.

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