Families are no longer eligible for child tax credits for their third child as a result of UK Government welfare cuts. The Rape Clause requires women to prove they’ve been raped in order to qualify for child tax credits for a third or subsequent child.
We believe that it is unacceptable for women to have to disclose that they have been raped to access social security. At Westminster, SNP MPs will press for the abolition of the two child cap and the associated Rape Clause.
The Cabinet Secretary for Health Shona Robison has written to the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) setting out our grave concerns about the implementation of the rape clause policy. It is not acceptable for healthcare professionals to have to act as gatekeepers for the benefits system. As a result, DWP guidance will not be issued to NHS staff, who we expect to continue to do what they consider to be in the best interest of their patients.