Human Services Minister to fathers: ‘It’s important to pay child support’
Absence from the home should never mean absence from a child’s life.
That was among several admonitions made by Minister of Human Services and Social Security Dr. Vindhya Persaud as she participated in the ‘Breaking the Stigma’ walk for men on Sunday.
The Minister used the occasion to underscore the importance of paying child support even as she said keeping families together remained the better option.
But in cases where parents must separate, Dr. Persaud said men must take action to ensure they remain in their children’s lives, not only in a financial way, but also to offer emotional and other support.
“It’s important to pay child support…we must encourage fathers to be present,” Dr. Persaud told the small gathering of mostly men.
She said at the Ministry there are lots of cases where fathers are not paying child support and it was disappointing, to say the least.
“It might seem like nothing because when women come for assistance, they get it but what happens to the other person that helped them to bring a child into the world?
“I appeal to men, talk to your brothers and friends and tell them it is important to pay child support. Don’t look at it as a ridiculous figure or something you’re annoyed about because you have to take money from your pockets,” Persaud said.
She reasoned that failure to pay child support can see children being deprived and denied of many things that can contribute to them becoming someone of value.
She said fathers absent from the home must not stop only at paying child support.
“It must be more!
“It must be the memories you create, the valuable bonding time and words that will last for a lifetime in that child’s mind because their dad said it,” the Minister said.
Dr. Persaud wants other men to encourage fathers to be present. She promised that support groups will be established for men to access counselling, financial support and parenting sessions.
“Men need help and we are happy to support it.”