|The Diary Of John|
|What difference does it make to the dead, the orphans, and the homeless, whether the mad destruction is wrought under the name of totalitarianism or the holy name of liberty and democracy? - Gandhi|
Monday, July 24, 2006
Axed CSA paves way for tough penalties
The much-criticised Child Support Agency is to be scrapped, the government said on Monday, paving the way for a body with new possible powers such as tagging parents who do not pay for their children's upkeep.
Under the proposals outlined by Work and Pensions Secretary John Hutton, absent parents who failed to meet their responsibilities could also have their passports seized and face night-time curfews.
They could also be publicly named and shamed.
In addition to the tough penalties, parents would be encouraged to make their own arrangements for providing child support.
The CSA, which enforces maintenance payments by separated parents, has been plagued by problems since its set up in 1993.
Dubbed the Child Shambles Agency by critics, it has struggled to cope with a huge backlog of cases and a failed computer system, and an independent report published on Monday by David Henshaw said the CSA could never be made to work properly.
Hutton admitted the system was burdened with past failures and a "fresh start" was needed.
"I propose to replace the CSA with a new organisation that is simpler but tougher on parents who do not pay up," Hutton said.
"The need for radical overhaul is clear."
The National Audit Office last month said the CSA was failing thousands of families despite a multi-million pound overhaul. Reforms designed to fix the problems have cost 539 million pounds without any improvements.
The NAO said there were persistent problems with enforcing payments and collecting money with an estimated 3.5 billion pounds of maintenance payments outstanding. About 60 percent of this will never be collected.
Hutton said the new system would be simpler to use and run, saving the taxpayer up to 200 million pounds a year.
Another proposal would allow parents on benefit to keep more maintenance money as Hutton said currently four million children could benefit from child support but only one in three did so.
However, the Conservatives said the plans would disappoint the 1.5 million families who used the system and failed to tackle the issue of how much an absent parent should pay.
"Having just poured half-a-billion pounds of tax payer's money down the drain the Government must be sure it has addressed this key issue before spending any more," said Tory work and pensions spokesman Philip Hammond.
The Child Poverty Action Group said it welcomed the replacement of the CSA and the plans for a tough enforcement system. But it added parents needed assurances that the money they needed would get through the system.
"Ultimately the test of these measures will be whether money gets through swiftly to children and helps to lift them out of poverty," said Kate Green, CPAG's chief executive.
Yeah, right, like we really believe this bullshit!! Since this CSA started more people have suffered from their fanatical money collecting scheme than the children they are supposed to collect the money for. Lets face it, this was a clusterfuck from the moment they started it, just a weak excuse to tax more men just because they arent in the family home. They dont even take into consideration the fact the dads pay for a shitload of other stuff too, schools, clothes etc. I saw where this agency took 95% of one dads wage and his children recieved none of it, most of it went to some sluch fund for the CSA and the rest who knows what happened to it. Imagine losing 95% of your salary and not having any money to support your new family etc. Yeah, we can see where this is going now, not content with screwing dads who hardly ever get to see their kids because of the one-sided laws for children parenting in the UK, now they decide they want to tag dads and take away their documents? What fucking bullshite is this? Fucking politicians don't give a flying fuck about children, they just want to get your hands on the cold green cash. CSA, CAFECASS, all these so called do-gooder agencies do nothing for anyone apart from rake in cash. There are no equalities here, my personal experience of Cafecass was nothing short of a nightmare, the most biased organization I've ever encountered in 39 years. From the moment the dopey bitch they sent me walked through my door, I could tell she was predujiced against both mine and my sons wishes. Thank fuck I will never return to the UK in the near future. Lets home someone takes a home-made bomb and blows these fuckers up. Hmmm, maybe some male bombers who would want to even up the score for all of those 300,000 dads with no rights apart from to pay through the fucking nose for some snotty fucking burrocrat..
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