CSA wins praise despite helping 'tiny minority' of lone mothers
Wednesday 30 March 1994
She warned, however, that for the majority of lone mothers the agency was 'not yet working' with only 'a tiny minority' of lone parents yet receiving maintenance.
Malcolm Wicks, the Labour MP who used to be director of the Family Policy Studies Centre, said it was time the 'lop-sided debate' about the CSA ended. Absent fathers had run an effective campaign against the agency but there was a 'silent army' of lone mothers and children who stood to gain and should be heard.
At a press conference to review the agency's first year, Kate Lister, 29, from Newbury, said the CSA had allowed her to get off benefit and into a part-time job for the first time in six years. 'My husband left me with two young children, many debts but no home and caught in the benefit trap,' she said. The CSA had successfully extracted pounds 78 a week from her ex-husband, leaving her pounds 30 a week better off even after paying her own rent, council tax and school meals.
Margaret Williams, a mother of three daughters aged 17 to 11, said the CSA had been 'nothing but good news,' boosting the maintenance her ex-husband was paying by pounds 60 a week to pounds 82.50. 'My children can now hold their heads high again because their father is supporting them, not the state.'
She now hoped to be able to resume the civil service career she had to give up because she could not afford child care. 'Absent fathers have got away with far too much for far too long,' she said.
Sue Slipman said, however, that for most women and children the agency was still failing to deliver. 'The question we are left with is why so many men complain about the devastating effect of increased payments when our monitoring shows that so few women are receiving increased payments'.
It was difficult to tell how far that was the agency's inefficiency and how far it was 'a tacit campaign of non co-operation by many absent parents'. Many lone mothers reactions to the agency had been 'worryingly negative', she said, and their criticisms needed to be dealt with.
Where husbands were self-employed, the agency appeared defeatist, she said, allowing the absent parent to manipulate the figures to appear to have no income. Carole Pallister, a lone parent, said she had had a letter from the CSA stating the maintenance she was due from her self-employed ex-husband was ' pounds 0.00p payable from 21.11.93' - despite her husband advertising his tree- surgeon business in Yellow Pages and employing six people.
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
- 1 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 2 Japanese plant experts produce 10,000 lettuce heads a day in LED-lit indoor farm
- 3 War is war: Why I stand with Israel
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week
Israel-Gaza conflict: Death toll tops 125 after overnight raids as Operation Protective Edge continues
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Ian Thorpe gay: Olympic swimmer comes out in Parkinson interview
Supermoon 2014: When and why will the moon look bigger and brighter this summer?
Gaza-Israel conflict: Pro-Palestinian demonstrators take to streets of London, Paris and New York in wave of protests
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
£70000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Information Security Manager (ISO 27001, A...
£30000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...
£60000 - £80000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Integration...
£75000 - £85000 per annum + ex bens: Deerfoot IT Resources Limited: Biztalk Te...