Casinos play big role in tracking down child support payments

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POSTED: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 - 6:40pm

UPDATED: Thursday, January 31, 2013 - 4:35pm

Financial uncertainty can hit at any time, and for single parents, it can be especially tough. But the state is trying to help them in an unusual way. The Department of Children and Family Services and casinos across the state are working together to get those deadbeat dads to pay back child support.

The casino intercept initiative has been underway for about a year now and in Baton Rouge, its seen tremendous success. One Baton Rouge mother of two has been waiting for years to see the cash, but now with the help of DCFS, she hit the jackpot and it was just in time for the holidays.

Alondra Robinson is used to being the bread winner, used to being a single mom with no help from anyone, even her ex-husband. "The boys are like my daddy a good daddy but he made one payment in 3 years when I have been busting my butt since you was born," says Alondra Robinson.

But without support, she says it's a daily struggle. ”You're responsible for everything you have to provide shelter and roof and clothes for them,” says Robinson. “And hope that one day he might pay or whatever."

But one day she got some news that was both frustrating and exciting. "It had been maybe 2 or 3 years with no payments then he said all of a sudden tell your momma check the child support card," noted Robinson.

Alondra Robinson got a child support payment, a big one, with the help of a local casino and DCFS. "This is money that is owed to the children so you can imagine what kind of impact 800 thousand dollars can have on children around the state," says DCFS employee, Trey Williams.

Over $800,000 state wide has been intercepted in casinos and given back to the families. Those dads are busted. "I was surprised when I had the money on the card I was like where did this come from, cause has always telling the boys he don't work or whatever, but apparently he’s working somewhere," says Robinson.

"It's almost about 170 thousand dollars little under what we have collected so far state wide just here in the Baton Rouge region,” noted Willams

Alondras unexpected payment came when she needed it the most. “The gambling winnings came just in time for Christmas."

There is actually a list of all the people in the state who have not paid child support along with how much they owe. Just visit the DCFS website.

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