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Nixon Tackles Problem of Unknown Fathers

By Matt Sepic, KWMU

St. Louis – Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon says too many children in the state are born without a father's name on their birth certificates.

Nixon has formed a new legislative group to study the issue. He says the problem of unknown fathers is bigger in Missouri than many other states.

"We've got a quarter-million kids out there, when they're asked for their birth certificate for little league or school choir, they have to embarrassingly slide that forward with no dad's name in there," Nixon said. "Our job is to make that connection, and make that connection stick in a positive way."

Nixon says urging mothers to establish paternity before a child is born can help ensure that child support can be collected.

He says the problem affects nearly 20 percent of children born between 1985 and 2002.