MP threatens CSA over maintenance debt

July 29, 2010

The Child Support Agency has continued to highlight the UK’s debt blackspots with the release of their league table for money owed by absent parents.

The latest figures reveal that Waveney and Norfolk owe a combined £50m, which has been labelled “horrendous” by one of Norfolk’s MPs and has led to widespread condemnation of those who owe money, and calls for reform within the agency.

The figures show that Great Yarmouth is the worst in the region, and 15th worst constituency overall with a total debt of £9.3m.

Waveney has a debt of £8.687m, Norwich South £7.154m and North West Norfolk £6.13m.

Brandon Lewis, the MP for Yarmouth, estimates that around 25 to 30 per cent of his time is spent on offering his constituents CSA advice, and hinted that past efforts to improve the CSA had failed, and that the debt indicated that there was much work still to do.

He said:

“The first responsibility must be with the parent, usually the father. If you have children you have a duty to care for them.

“I do appreciate there are a number of fathers who can’t physically provide for their family but it is a small percentage.”

He speculated that the problem was linked with soaring pregnancy rates and high unemployment, which has reached the third generation in some areas of Yarmouth.

Peter Aldous, MP for Waveney, has asked the CSA to explain the poor figures and has threatened to take the issue up at a ministerial level.

A spokesperson for the CSA said that the level of arrears had actually fallen, and that parents with care were only owed half of the money.

Comments

  • Karl Garrett says:

    What about those NRP’s which are being pushed into poverty by the CSA? – I bet the MP doesn’t give a dam about them. It’s always about the bloody woman. I wish I never had kids!.

  • Paul Gibbons says:

    Well said Karl Garrett, the government does not care one jolt for the plight of alienated fathers. Women got a damn sight more that equality in the 60’s. The CSA was relevant in the age of the nuclear families when the mans income could sustain the family. Today however we live in a system where two incomes are needed just to pay the rent/mortgage. We are all means tested to make sure we are on a rock bottom wage. Dads perused by the CSA now have to live on 20 to 40% less than rock bottom. They are left as some of the poorest most deprived and vilified people in the country. It is utterly disgraceful.
    The CSA must be stopped.

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