Policy Area

Benefits & Social Security

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What is the SNP position on Universal Credit?

Universal Credit – the UK government’s flagship welfare policy – is a new payment to replace several existing benefits, including housing benefit and child tax credits, with one single monthly payment.

At Westminster, SNP MPs will continue to push the UK government to stop ignoring the overwhelming evidence that Universal Credit is causing unnecessary hardship to thousands of families across the country. We want Tory Ministers to halt this rollout until these fundamental flaws in the system are addressed.

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What is the SNP doing to tackle funeral poverty?

We know that funeral costs can push people into poverty – that’s why we’re taking decisive action to tackle this growing issue. The SNP Scottish Government has published a Funeral Costs Plan, which commits to 10 actions: 1. We will use new social security powers to launch a new Funeral Expense Assistance benefit from summer…

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Can the Scottish Parliament mitigate the WASPI changes?

While the SNP agree with the equalisation of the State Pension Age, we do not support the unfair manner in which these changes were made in the 2011 Pensions Act. Around 2.6 million women are affected by the accelerated pace and many will receive their pension years later than expected.   This is a mess…

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What is the SNP policy on State Pension Age?

We will continue to argue for a fairer pensions system. SNP MPs will oppose plans to increase the State Pension Age beyond 66. We will support the establishment of an Independent Savings and Pension Commission, to ensure pensions and savings policies are fit for purpose. The remit of the Commission should include consideration of the…

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Does the SNP oppose the current benefit sanctions regime?

The punitive benefit sanctions regime is causing hardship and pushing people into poverty, debt, crisis and towards foodbanks and emergency aid. The SNP will continue to call for the current sanction regime to be scrapped.

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What is the SNP position on UK government welfare cuts?

The Tories have cut taxes for the wealthiest in our society, while cutting support for the disabled and low income working families. According to the Resolution Foundation, the UK is on course for the biggest increase in inequality since the days of Margaret Thatcher. SNP MPs will vote against further cuts to social security. We…

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How is the SNP standing up for WASPI women?

The SNP fully support the Women Against State Pension Inequality (WASPI) campaign in their efforts to secure fairness for women affected by the acceleration in the retirement age.   While we agree with the equalisation of the State Pension Age, we do not support the unfair manner in which these changes were made in the…

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How is the SNP fighting the Rape Clause and two child tax credit cap

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…

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When will the Scottish Government begin delivering benefits being devolved in the Scotland Act 2016?

The Scottish Government has launched their new social security system, the first new Scottish public service since devolution. Social Security Scotland made its first payments in September 2018, delivering the Carer’s Allowance Supplement. This increases the Carer’s Allowance by 13% and is an investment of more than £30 million a year to support carers in…

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Will the transfer of powers over disability benefits to Scotland affect the payments I currently receive?

No. We will protect disability benefits, not cut them, and will ensure that they remain non-means tested. To take forward the new powers, we will establish a Scottish Social Security Agency with dignity and respect at its heart and we’ll also ensure that the transition to new benefits system is smooth for everyone.

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How will you improve the income of carers?

Social Security Scotland made its first payments in September 2018, delivering the Carer’s Allowance Supplement. This increases the Carer’s Allowance by 13 per cent.

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What plans do the SNP have to use new powers around social security?

Under the Scotland Act 2016, some social security powers will be devolved to the Scottish Parliament. These powers will account for around 15 per cent of the total Scottish benefits bill. The majority of the devolved benefits will be delivered directly by Scotland’s new social security agency. Discretionary Housing Payments and the Scottish Welfare Fund…

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What actions are the SNP taking in Government to mitigate Westminster’s welfare reforms?

The SNP Scottish Government has taken steps to mitigate the worst aspects of Westminster’s welfare reform. Since 2013, the Scottish Government has spent over £100 million a year to protect people from the worst aspects of Tory welfare cuts. We are fully mitigating the Bedroom Tax in Scotland, and we have pledged to abolish the…

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