Scottish child payment turns one

Published:
February 14, 2022 12:01 a.m.

Eligible parents are invited to apply

Eligible parents are invited to apply for Scottish Child Payment on the first anniversary of its deployment.

The £10-a-week payment, unique to Scotland, started in February 2021 as a direct measure to tackle poverty. It provides regular additional financial support to parents and guardians to help cover childcare costs.

Since its launch, families of around 106,000 children have benefited from £520 a year and the payment will double to £20 a week from April.

By the end of this year – subject to the data being made available by the DWP – the payment will extend to all eligible children under 16.

In 2019-20, the Scottish Government invested almost £2bn to support low-income households, including over £672m specifically for children.

Shona Robison, Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, Housing and Local Government, said:

“The Scottish Government is committed to delivering on our ambition to eradicate child poverty in Scotland. This year, therefore, we will be even bolder with the ambitious and transformational measures we will take.

“From April, our Scottish child payment will double to £20 a week, four times the amount originally called for by anti-poverty campaigners. Together with our Best Start Grant and Best Start Foods payments, this will provide a financial support package worth £8,400 by the time the first child in an eligible family turns 6.

“The extension to 16 years will continue this progression with the number of eligible children rising to 430,000. In 2023-2024, we estimate that Scottish Child Payment could lift 40,000 children out of poverty.

“This is part of the national mission we have set for ourselves and society to tackle child poverty and our focus must be relentless and consistent.

“Because many people find out about Scottish Child Payment by word of mouth, if you think a friend or family member might qualify, please encourage them to find out more and help ensure that all people eligible also receive the assistance to which they are entitled.

“That way we can all play a part in ensuring the continued success of Scottish Child Payment, advancing our fight to eradicate child poverty and build an equal and fairer country.”

The Scottish Government has committed to introducing Scottish Child Payment in June 2019 as part of the Tackling Child Poverty Delivery Plan.

John Dickie, Director of Child Poverty Action Group, said: “Scottish Child Payment already provides vital financial support to families, helping parents to give their children the best possible start in life.

“The doubling in value from April comes at a critical time, helping families stay afloat as food and energy prices soar. Rolling out to eligible children over the age of five is now eagerly awaited and really can’t come soon enough. »

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