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Policy updates, impacts of poverty and race take centerstage at WICSEC 2023 annual meeting

Western Intergovernmental Child Support Engagement Council brings experts together to advance child support services for families and agencies

“Think Outside” was the inviting theme for the 2023 annual meeting of the Western Intergovernmental Child Support Engagement Council (WICSEC). The weather in Portland, Oregon, from September 17 – 21 made many of the participants enjoy being outside, but the real learning and networking took place inside the Hilton Portland Downtown. Conduent’s team of experts was on hand to learn, share, and support the event.

Tools to serve constituents in poverty 

As a member of the WICSEC Board of Directors, I’m especially proud of the organization’s ability to assemble thought leaders and practitioners together to address emerging issues involving caring for families. This year’s agenda was packed with great speakers and thoughtful topics. The opening plenary set the stage for open and honest dialogue. Titled “Poverty, Race, and Consciousness with Dr. Donna Beegle and Dr. Shareef Abdullah,” the session dealt with impacts of poverty and race on child support services and programs.   

Dr. Beegle’s evidence-based best practices for providing services to those in poverty are especially useful for industry practitioners:  

  1. Believe in those you seek to empower. 
  2. Recognize that all people have knowledge and skills to contribute. 
  3. Gain poverty competencies by suspending judgment of those you serve.  
  4. Examine policies and programs to ensure we are actually serving — not punishing or ignoring — the realities of poverty. 
  5. Take a “If Not Me, Then Who?” approach 

I’m certain that Dr. Beegle’s insights were valuable to all of those in attendance.  

Other conference topics included authentic communication, options for change in child support payment distribution, child support in the military, problem-solving, and many more. Again and again, attendees were encouraged to “think outside the box” and to look for new and better solutions to problems. 

Conduent was a Platinum Sponsor of the event and four of our Child Support Solutions subject matter experts operated a booth, attended sessions, and provided information about how Conduent supports the child support program. Our experts leverage opportunities to communicate with child support program leaders to learn about the needs of states and counties so that we can impact the future of child support with new and better technology and the latest in business services.    

All the while, we keep in mind that many families are touched by this program.   We strive to give them our best efforts by staying informed and relevant to current needs. 

WICSEC encouraged participants to “Think Outside.” Our Conduent team appreciated that theme and that vision, as we strive to do this as we work in partnership with child support programs.  We are already looking forward to next year’s conference in Lake Tahoe, Nevada. 

Ready to discover how Conduent Child Support Services can help your agency deliver reliable, efficient and secure payments to parents while reducing costs and improving processes? Learn more now or contact an expert at