In stark contrast to the Tories’ callous approach to social security, evidenced not least by the calamitous roll-out of Universal Credit, the SNP Scottish Government is establishing a system with compassion and dignity at heart.
Following last year’s successful launch of two new benefits – the Carer’s Allowance Supplement and the Best Start Grant pregnancy and baby payment – Social Security Scotland will launch four new benefits this year.
Low income families and carers are set to benefit from:
• Best Start Grant nursery age payment – a £250 payment that will be made to low income families around the time a child can start nursery
• Best Start Grant school payment – a £250 payment that will be made to low income families around the time a child can start school
• Funeral Expense Assistance – providing eligible low income families with a contribution towards the cost of a funeral
• Young Carer Grant – The grant will be awarded to young carers aged 16 to 18 who do at least 16 hours of caring a week, but don’t qualify for Carer’s Allowance. It will help to improve young carers’ quality of life, helping them take part in employment, social or leisure opportunities
These are just the first steps in the delivery of our new social security system, and in 2019 Social Security Scotland will start delivery of even more benefits to support people in our society.
Our mission is for everyone to live in dignity, and expanding the new social security system will be an important part of achieving this. As we move into 2019, we are determined to make further progress on tackling inequality and reducing poverty.