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Separated parents improve relations with former partners.

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MEDIA ENQUIRIES: Sarah Cosson 0423 823 843

MEDIA RELEASE Senator the Hon Joe Ludwig Minister for Human Services

Thursday 16 October 2008

Separated parents improve relations with former partners

As we approach Children’s Week 2008, new research shows an increasing number of separated parents are dealing with their former partner in a more businesslike manner.

“It’s good to see that more parents are considering the broader needs of their children by having a workable relationship with their ex-partner,” Minister for Human Services, Senator Joe Ludwig, said.

The survey commissioned by the Child Support Agency charts over a six-month period, strong, positive changes in how parents view their relationship with their former partner.

In August 2008, 43 per cent of parents said they were very likely to deal with the other parent in a businesslike way - up from 26 per cent in February 2008.

“That represents 250,000 mums and dads who now say they’ve improved the way they deal with each other,” Senator Ludwig said.

“This is a great example to set the kids. Children benefit when parents are respectful to each other and can cooperate in their presence - whether they are separated or not.”

The survey also shows a dramatic drop in the number of parents saying they were very unlikely to deal in a businesslike way with their former partner. That figure has fallen from 45 per cent to 26 per cent between February and August 2008.

“These are encouraging signs and in line with one of the main themes of Children’s Week, the right of children to enjoy childhood,” Senator Ludwig said.

Children’s Week 2008 is being celebrated from October 18-26.

“Children’s Week is a timely reminder to focus on the needs of children and ensure kids of separated families experience the best childhood possible,” Senator Ludwig said.

“Providing for children after the separation of their mum and dad means more than just paying child support, meeting the emotional needs of their kids is also important.”

MEDIA ENQUIRIES: Sarah Cosson 0423 823 843

“Separation can be a challenging and sensitive time for families and it is important parents consider the impact of the separation on their children and help them with a joint-positive parenting approach.”

CSA’s partnership with Kids Help Line is helping to ensure children have access to support, particularly for those who may be feeling troubled by their parents’ separation.

The CSA’s new Teen’s Guide to Family Separation is also very popular with teenagers whose parents were separating. A free copy can be ordered online at or by calling 1800 040 972.

The CSA helps around 1.5 million parents transfer payments for the benefit of more than 1.1 million children.