To mums’ aid
MOTHERS LOOK LIKELY soon to be able to access child maintenance from the Magistrates’ Courts whether fathers of their children make monetary deposits or not.
And new measures to facilitate this have received the complete blessing of Ralph Boyce, chairman of the Men’s Educational Support Association (MESA), one of the island’s principal male organisations.
Speaking Sunday night at Sherbourne, St John, at a by-election meeting to support the candidature of Mara Thompson, Prime Minister Freundel Stuart said because so many mothers made futile visits to the courts for child maintenance, Government had decided that their situation would be made “a front-burner issue”.
He explained that a state allocation of a “certain sum” would be made to every Magistrates’ Court to ensure that if a mother went to the court and the father had not deposited any money, she would still receive something to look after her children.
But he stressed fathers would not be let off the hook.
“. . . What the court pays out will become a debt due and owing by the father.”
Boyce agreed it was a step in the right direction, though he emphasised that more fathers were now supporting their children than in the past.