New program helps parents find jobs and pay child support - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

New program helps parents find jobs and pay child support

Judge Rick Wilcox, Associate Child Support Judge Rick Wilcox, Associate Child Support

By Sarah Seeley
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, Texas - For parents who have lost their jobs, paying child support can be harder than ever.

As the economy suffers and jobs are lost the Attorney General's office finds many non-custodial parents- or the parent without custody- can't pay child support.

"If their failure to pay was beyond their control, obviously we don't want to send them to jail," said Associate Child Support Judge Rick Wilcox.  "That's when, if they've had a job loss, [or] they've been downsized out of their employment, that's when we find out about it."

The court will then tell the parent to enroll in the new Non-Custodial Parent Employment Program through the Texas Workforce Commission.

"These parents need some specialized services that you wouldn't be able to get if you just walked through the door," said Trent Morris, Panhandle Workforce Solutions director.

"They may need to be re-trained; they may need to have some special tools that will help them be successful on the job so there's additional funds that are available for this specific population that may not be available to every who walks in the door here."

Only a handful of these parents have gone through Panhandle Workforce Solutions to get back in the work field, but Wilcox and Morris agree the program helps more than just families, it also helps tax payers.

 

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