Hi everyone and welcome to Bristol Grandparents Support Group blog. Although we are Bristol based we have grandparents from all over the UK and beyond as members.

It is estimated that over one million children in the UK are denied contact with their grandparents due to family breakdown which may have been caused by divorce/separation, alcohol/drug dependency,domestic violence,bereavement or family feud.
Every child has the right to have contact with their grandparents
if they wish and unless proven unsafe for them to do so. To deny contact from a parent or grandparent has to become as socially unacceptable as drink driving.
I hope to keep you up to date with what is going on in BGSG and I shall continue to campaign for the rights of children to have a loving and meaningful relationship with both parents and their extended family. So please join in as good to hear your views, not just mine!
I also will support via Skype.
There is no membership fee to be part of Bristol Grandparents Support Group.
Esther Rantzen says, " To every grandparent, links of love can never be broken in our hearts."

Please contact during office hours.

Monday 14 February 2011

‘Child support fees hurt children,' says Gingerbread

Gingerbread launches campaign

Gingerbread, the support group for one parent families, is warning that government plans to charge for the child support scheme will leave many single parents without money for their children. Current statistics, it says, show that over 1.1 million single parents currently depend on the state to get maintenance from their former partners but under new proposals they could be set adrift to cope on their own.

Government research shows that 64% of parents caring for children and using the Child Support Agency are not confident that they could make private child maintenance arrangements with their ex-partner, even with the promised improved information and guidance services. Even where single parents are able to negotiate an informal arrangement with their ex, Gingerbread warns that they will be at risk of low, sporadic and unenforceable private payments.

Gingerbread's Chief Executive Fiona Weir said:

"The government wants parents to make their own child maintenance arrangements but for many families that just isn't possible. Informal agreements can be scuppered by conflict, lack of trust or a non-resident parent's reluctance to pay. While Gingerbread is in favour of providing greater support to separating parents to help them cooperate over arrangements, imposing charges on those who can't will only end up hurting children."

Gingerbread has already received calls and online comments from many single parents who are outraged at these proposals, and is launching a campaign to encourage single parents to take action and make their voices heard.

More information can be accessed on Gingerbread's website.

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