Performance Improvement 2004. OCSE Responsible fatherhood programs: early implementation lessons


Eight states received Responsible Fatherhood demonstration grants or waivers through the Office of Child Support Enforcement to allow them to test comprehensive approaches to encourage more responsible fathering by non-custodial parents. Each state project was different but they all provided a range of needed services such as job search and training, access and visitation, social services or referral, case management and child support services. The initial implementation report documented the status of the program, services being delivered and child support context. The final report indicated that the responsible fatherhood services resulted in increased employment rates ranging from 8 to 33 percent, especially for those who were unemployed previously; increased child support compliance ranging from 4 to 31 percent primarily for those who had not been paying previously; and increased time spent with children with 27 percent of the fathers reported seeing their children more often after the program. The report also suggests that the child support program should be more sensitive to the limitations of low- income non-custodial parents in the establishment of child support orders. For example, for the very poor, (earnings less than $6000 a year) current child support obligations and arrearages were found to be from two to six times greater than their reported earnings. For those with earnings of $6000 to $12,000 a year, current child support and arrearages were 21 to 61 percent of reported earnings, depending upon the site.

PIC ID: 7055
Agency Sponsor: ACF-OCSE, Office of Child Support Enforcement
Federal Contact: Arnaudo, David, 202-401-5364
Performer: The Lewin Group, Fairfax, VA and The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD

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