On May 21, Baltimore Sun Poverty & Social Services Reporter Yvonne Wenger spoke on a panel hosted by the Aspen Institute titled "Implications and Useful Lessons around Child Support." The webinar featured representatives from the Center for Urban Families as well, and aimed to unpack "holistic, family-centered approaches to child support that put children and families where they belong: at the center."
The Baltimore Sun spent nine months investigating how Maryland's child support system impacts Baltimore's poorest families in the Pulitzer Center-supported project "At What Cost?" It found that parents in struggling city neighborhoods owe tens of millions of dollars in unpaid child support, and that misguided policies hurt parents, children, and entire communities. Policy instruments combine to demand child support payments based on fictitious 'potential' income without taking into account barriers to employment as well as require that some of the payments return to the state rather than stay with families to reimburse welfare payments.
Wenger shared her findings in the context of the Aspen Institute's effort to elevate voices which help families reach their full potential. The recording for the webinar can be found here, as well as the presentation slides.