The Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development
welcomes the report prepared by Ms Gisela Wurm (Austria, SOC) for
the Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination. It fully supports
the recommendations that the Council of Europe member States should
ensure that child maintenance payments are paid fully and on time,
and, in cases of non-compliance, should substitute themselves and
advance payment in the best interests of the child.
However, the report submitted to the Parliamentary Assembly
by the Equality Committee focuses on the gender equality aspect
of child maintenance. It is important to keep in mind that child
maintenance is the right of the child (as guaranteed by the United
Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child), not of a parent
of whatever gender.
Thus, whilst fully agreeing with the aims of the Equality
Committee, the Social Affairs Committee wishes to propose a number
of amendments to ensure that a few specific aspects of the particular
situation of children are better highlighted in order to create
greater awareness among law- and policy makers.