The problem of fathers neglecting to pay child support is a constant struggle for counties here in Texas, and across the United States. Interestingly enough, one Ohio county has devised a rather unique solution to this problem — particularly as it relates to young men.
Officials in Lucas County, Ohio started the Young Fathers Early Intervention Program to address the growing problem of young men neglecting to make their child support payments — currently only 33 percent of fathers between the ages of 18 to 24 are actively paying child support in the county and arrears among this age group stand at $4.3 million.
The program takes more of a rehabilitative than punitive approach by providing men between the ages of 18 to 24 with the opportunity to develop their job skills, parenting skills and general coping skills.
Specifically, the program provides young men — many of whom have a history of legal problems, or who are lacking the necessary education, transportation or understanding of the workforce — with job search assistance and skill training.
“It’s an innovative approach to engage young fathers, with the goal of enabling them to be financially responsible for their children,” said Magistrate Sue Cairl.
Furthermore, the program — a partnership run by several Lucas County agencies including the Child Support Enforcement Agency, Job and Family Services Office, and the juvenile courts — teaches young fathers how to have healthy relationships with the mothers of their children and helpful child raising skills.
“There are skills you can learn that can help the process of parenting be a little easier,” said Tracee Perryman, executive director of a family counseling service center.
It must be noted, however, that all participants in the Young Fathers Early Intervention Program are required to both report back to the court and fulfill their child support obligations — past and present. Failure to do so can result in a trip to the local jail.
Stay tuned for more from our Ft. Worth family law blog …
To learn more about child support arrears or post-divorce issues, contact an experienced and skilled legal professional.
This post is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.
Toledo Blade, “Lucas County program mentors young dads who owe child support” Feb. 6, 2012