Glasgow MP welcomes replacement of CSA

03 Nov 2008

The replacement body for the much-criticised Child Support Agency will be up and running this week.

The news of the long-awaited transition has been welcomed by Glasgow East MP, John Mason, who has regular cases from constituents who have been failed by the current Child Support system.

The performance of the CSA has been under serious scrutiny for many years after the major failings of a new computer system led to widespread errors and caused hardship for families.

The SNP MP’s new constituency office has received a string of complaints from both ‘Parents With Care’ who are not receiving payments and from ‘Non-Resident Parents’ who are being asked to pay far beyond their means. After these major failings were finally accepted by the Government plans were put in place in December 2006 to replace the Agency with a new body – the Child Maintenance & Enforcement Commission – which will take on new and existing cases.

Commenting on the change, East End SNP MP John Mason said: “I have dealt with a large number of Child Support Agency cases since my election and the major problems within the Agency have had a significant impact on many families’ lives here in Glasgow.

“In many cases there are parents receiving no child support whatsoever, and in others the absent parents are being asked to pay far more than is affordable.

“There has been no flexibility in the system to allow reasonable arrangements to be made, and the transfer of powers to the new body is a major step to solving that.

“It is disappointing that the Government took such a long time to accept the problems and take the corrective action which I, and many other MPs, have been demanding. That being said, this long overdue move is a significant step forward, and should mean a fairer deal for local families.”