McLean, VA—The National Child Support Enforcement Association (NCSEA) Board of Directors approved a resolution addressing many concerns impacting the child support program in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic disruption affecting millions of families.
“There is a critical need for child support services as a result of COVID-19, and it’s important for the child support program to respond to needs created and emphasized by the pandemic,” said NCSEA President Tanguler Gray. “For more than 45 years, the IV-D program has been one of the most effective anti-poverty programs in the country and ranks as one of the most cost-effective social programs in government” she continued.
The NCSEA resolution calls for program flexibility and increased funding so the programs can continue serving families. This includes flexibility in program performance mandates adversely impacted by office closings and other COVID-19 related government orders. The financial stability of child support programs will also be compromised due to COVID-19 and is a focus of the resolution.
The resolution also requests the expansion of current employment programs for non-custodial parents so that child support programs can provide critical resources to get Americans back to work post-COVID-19. These employment programs help unemployed and underemployed non-custodial parents increase their capacity to meet their child support obligations.
The third and final provision of the resolution addresses important technology concerns, to provide state child support programs significant options for providing services remotely, offering flexibility in services for families resulting in improved cost-effectiveness, and . , to bring the technology supporting the child support program into the 21st century.
In mid-April, the NCSEA Board of Directors also approved a resolution to exclude any future COVID-19 related relief payments from offset for past-due child support. The resolution expressed concern that parents who owe past-due support must have enough employment opportunities to be self-sufficient without a relief payment and encouraged Congress to address this critical issue.