The Scottish Child Payment will be doubled to £20 per week per child from April 2022.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that more than 105,000 children will immediately benefit from the increased payment, which supports low income families with children aged under 6.
First introduced in February 2021 as a £10 per week payment designed to tackle child poverty, it provides regular, additional financial support for eligible families.
The benefit, which is unique in the UK, will be fully rolled out to children under the age of 16 by the end of 2022, subject to data on qualifying benefits being received from the Department of Work and Pensions. It is expected over 400,000 children could be eligible for the doubled payment from that point.
From 2023/24 it will represent an annual investment in tackling child poverty of around £360 million a year. The increase to £20 per week further underlines the Scottish Government’s national mission to tackle child poverty.
Commenting local MSP for Edinburgh Pentlands, Gordon MacDonald said:
I am delighted that at least 7555 children across Edinburgh will have their Scottish Child Payment doubled in just four months time. This will give £20 per child per week to 7555 children in Edinburgh – four times the amount originally demanded by campaigners.
The Scottish Government’s national mission to tackle child poverty is absolute – with £2,036,820 having been provided to families across Edinburgh since February, and almost £32 million across Scotland as a whole.
The doubling of the Scottish Child Payment to £20 is the type of bold action that makes a real difference to people’s lives and shows how focussed the Scottish Government is on meeting Scotland’s Child Poverty targets.
Once again, the tale of two governments is striking. While the SNP are doubling the Scottish Child Payment to lift thousands of children out of poverty, the Tories at Westminster have just cut £20 per week from many of the same families – knowingly pushing thousands of families into poverty.
The people in Edinburgh deserve the chance to escape the damaging policies we get under Westminster control and get the chance to choose a better path, one with the full powers that an independent Scotland would bring and allow us to build a fairer society.