Hauppauge, NY - July 27, 2015 - Suffolk County Legislature Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory and 8th District Legislator William J. Lindsay III on Friday announced a change in policy that will require Suffolk County police officers to arrest parents for driving if their license has been suspended for failure to pay child support.
Gregory and Lindsay were joined in making this announcement by County Executive Steve Bellone, Assistant Deputy County Executive for Public Safety Tim Sini and Suffolk County Police Chief John Meehan at a press conference at the H. Lee Dennison Building in Hauppauge.
“I am pleased that Legislator Bill Lindsay, Assistant Deputy County Executive Tim Sini, the Suffolk County Police Department and I were able to work together to institute this aggressive policy, which will help stop deadbeat parents in their tracks,” said Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory. “This directive sends a clear message to any parent considering dodging responsibility: We will not let you fail your children.”
The new policy took effect May 27. Prior to that date, officers had been permitted to issue an appearance ticket at their discretion. However, after receiving an email from Margaret Madden, who said she had not received child support from a delinquent parent for years, Legis. Lindsay set up a meeting with Madden and a representative from Gregory’s office. Following that meeting, Gregory and Lindsay worked with Sini and the Suffolk County Police Department to adopt the new policy.
“It’s very important that we in government send a clear message to everybody that they have to play by the rules,” said Suffolk County Legislator William Lindsay III. “This applies to individuals that don’t pay anything, who have continuously not paid anything, and have basically thumbed their nose at the system for a long period of time. It’s time that we say enough is enough, you need to fulfill your obligations as a parent.”
A study will be done in six months in order to assess the efficacy of the new policy.
Pictured: From left, Suffolk County Legislature Presiding Officer DuWayne Gregory, Margaret Madden, Assistant Deputy County Executive for Public Safety Tim Sini, 8th District Legislator William J. Lindsay III, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone and Suffolk County Police Chief John Meehan gather at a press conference announcing a new policy that will require police officers to arrest parents for driving if their licenses have been suspended for failure to pay child support.