In fiscal year 2018, noncustodial parents were obligated to pay nearly $33.6 billion in current child support on behalf of the 15 million children served by the Title IV-D child support program. One-third of that, or $11 billion, was not collected. Unemployment is the leading reason for non-payment of child support by noncustodial parents. This brief will explore the opportunities at the state and federal levels to provide employment services to noncustodial parents and increase child support payments in the process.
The Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency (BIAS) project is an ambitious effort to apply behavioral science principles to improving services related to child care, child support, and work support. As is the case with most behavioral research, the BIAS project focuses on individual client behavior. This approach provides significant benefits by allowing for low-cost, incremental improvements that can accumulate over time. One extension to this individual-level approach would be to consider the behavior of individual staff members who work with those clients. Another beneficial…
Responsible Fatherhood programs often have a strong focus on workforce development activities. The federal Office of Family Assistance requires their Responsible Fatherhood grantees to provide economic stability activities, such as job training, employment services, and career-advancing education, and other fatherhood programs typically recognize the importance of helping fathers improve their ability to provide financially for themselves and their children. Workforce development activities generally include training for specific job skills (such as welding, automotive mechanics, or…
The economic convergence of American regions has greatly slowed, and rates of long-term non-employment have even been diverging. Simultaneously, the rate of non-employment for working age men has nearly tripled over the last 50 years, generating a terrible social problem that is disproportionately centered in the eastern parts of the American heartland. Should more permanent economic divisions across space lead American economists to rethink their traditional skepticism about place-based policies? We document that increases in labor demand appear to have greater impacts on employment in areas…
Brief, NRFC Quick Statistics and Research Reviews, Brief
Roughly one in five people and more than one in 10 men between the ages of 18 and 44 in the United States live in rural communities. Although rural and urban fathers are similar in many ways, there are significant differences shaping their lives and opportunities that have implications for fatherhood programs. For instance, program staff working in rural communities often report that higher rates of unemployment, lower educational attainment, limited job opportunities, and lack of transportation translate to challenges that are difficult to address and unique to rural communities. This…
The Infant Vitality Toolkit for Men and Fathers is a resource that can help involve men in the pregnancy process and educate them about their role in infant care. Whether fathers are looking for information on their own or in a group setting, this Toolkit provides valuable resources. It takes all of us--including fathers--to ensure that all babies see their first birthdays and beyond.
NRFC Quick Statistics and Research Reviews, Brief
This data snapshot provides information from published resources on a range of employment characteristics of resident fathers, including employment rates, employment status, earnings, family structure, and division of household labor.
An NRFC team visited the Fathers and Families Center in Indianapolis on April 23 and 24, 2018. The team had the opportunity to talk with program staff, participants, graduates, and community partners. This NRFC Spotlight highlights aspects of the Fathers and Families Center work with fathers that may be of interest to other fatherhood practitioners, including Recruitment, Intake and Assessment, The Role of Partner Agencies, and Strong Fathers Classes.
As the American family changes, fatherhood is changing in important and sometimes surprising ways. Today, fathers who live with their children are taking a more active role in caring for them and helping out around the house. And the ranks of stay-at-home and single fathers have grown significantly in recent decades. At the same time, more and more children are growing up without a father in the home.The changing role of fathers has introduced new challenges as dads juggle the competing demands of family and work. This report highlights key findings about fathers from Pew Research Center…
As part of the "Looking Forward" series, which provides policymakers with memos that suggest ways to make progress on critical issues, MDRC presents the topic of balancing welfare support for poor families and children with promoting self-sufficiency through work.