Child Maintenance and Other Payments Bill

Part of Orders of the Day – in the House of Commons at 2:22 pm on 4th July 2007.

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Photo of Peter Hain Peter Hain The Secretary of State for Wales, The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 2:22 pm, 4th July 2007

Does the hon. Gentleman mean by that that I "ain't heard nothing yet" from his hon. Friend?

May I draw attention to the operational improvement plan that has been put in place for the CSA? I am grateful for what the hon. Gentleman says about its staff, because they deserve a great deal of praise for the tremendous improvement in performance. Let us take a look at what all this means. In March 2006, 591,000 children benefited from the agency's collecting or arranging maintenance. The target for March 2008 is 720,000 children—a significant rise—and the total is already rising beyond the 2006 figure. The target for 2009 is some 791,000 children. That means an increase of roughly 200,000 over the period concerned, which is a significant increase, as the hon. Gentleman ought to acknowledge.