You receive a letter in the mail telling you to show up in court for a child support hearing. What do you do? Many young fathers are confused and scared. They may want to do the right thing and support their child, but they’re not sure how, and are afraid to go to court.
But ignoring the letter and not showing up in court has serious, long-term consequences on a father’s life. Without the father’s input and proof of income, the judge may assign payments he can’t afford, increasing both the father’s and the children’s financial instability. Over 95% of teen parents who appear in family court alone do not understand what to do when they get to court, or what their rights are.
CUP collaborated with the Resilience Advocacy Project (RAP) and designers WeShouldDoItAll to create this English and Spanish fold-out poster. Directly aimed at teen fathers, the illustrated poster breaks down the child support process in concrete steps, highlighting fathers’ rights, and guiding them through their day in family court. The poster will better equip fathers to advocate for themselves within the system, to empower them with the tools to be active agents in their own and their children’s lives, and, ultimately, to obtain child support orders that they can understand and afford.
RAP launched Child Support?! at a know your rights workshop for teen fathers at a teen shelter in Brooklyn. RAP will also distribute the poster to fatherhood organizations throughout NYC.
Get your own copy here.