Child Support Task Force Visits Brainerd
In 2016, the Minnesota Legislature formed a child support task force. Today, the group came to Brainerd for the first time to hear from local residents about their child support issues and needs.
“The task force is working on the guidelines and reviewing the actual guidelines in how child support is set. That’s what they want to hear from, how does the amount of child support that’s set affect both sides of the families and wherever the children are living,” said Crow Wing County Child Support Supervisor Karen Holt.
During the public comment session of the task force there were parents there who pay child support and parents who receive child support to voice their opinions of their personal situations.
“I feel like it is a struggle at times to get the child support that my kids deserve,” said mother of three Jennah Fox.
Fox is looking for answers on how to better keep track of what child support is paid based on income.
“My personal experience, that’s my struggle, is being able to get them when they are working for cash and there is no basis or proof of what they are making,” Fox said.
She wasn’t alone in sharing her story and was grateful the task force took the time to come to Brainerd.
“Makes me feel like they are actually trying to do something for me and my kids,” Fox said. “They are trying to help get the help that I need.”
It’s support that even those at the county level are glad to receive from the task force.
“I think it’s important for our customers and our clients for having their voices heard and let them know what is going on out here,” Holt said.
After the five minutes each person was given to speak, the task force members could ask questions about what they just heard.
“It’s difficult; it’s hard to make families happy and it’s hard to listen to the struggles that they have on both sides of this,” Holt said.
The task force will use the input from the discussion today in order to submit a report to the Legislature in February 2018.
“I feel assured that my worker is actually trying, and I am hoping something positive comes out of this,” Fox said.
Fox and others are remaining optimistic about the future of child support in Minnesota.