By Paul Cassidy
The Scottish Government must act to prevent thousands missing out on the vital Scottish Child Payment, Jackie Baillie MSP has said, after it was revealed that fewer than half of the eligible population have applied.
As of last Sunday, the Scottish Government had received only 77,000 applications for the Scottish Child Payment – accounting for only 44.5 per cent of the 173,000 children estimated to be eligible to claim.
According to Scottish Government Statistics on applications, only 1,285 applications were received from West Dunbartonshire and 730 in Argyll and Bute during the period 9th November 2020 – 31 December 2020. This represents 2% and 1% respectively of the 54,815 applications received at this point.
Jackie Baillie MSP, pictured left, is today calling on the Scottish Government to “pull out all the stops” to ensure that all those eligible for the payment get the payment, and has re-iterated her call for the swift automation of the benefit.
The MSP for Dumbarton, Vale of Leven, Helensburgh and Lomond said: “Scotland is facing a tidal wave of poverty caused by the pandemic and yet the Scottish Government is failing to ensure that over half of those eligible for this payment get the help they need.
“The Scottish Child Payment is a welcome step in the fight against poverty but without it actually getting into the pockets of those in need, little will change.
“It’s time for the Scottish Government to pull out all the stops to ensure that all those eligible for the payment, get the payment. This must include the automation of the benefit to ensure 100 per cent uptake.”
“I urge any parents who are eligible in West Dunbartonshire or Argyll and Bute to apply for The Scottish Child Payment.”
The Scottish Child Payment Eligibility:
You can get a Scottish Child Payment if all of the following apply:
- you or your partner is responsible for a baby or child under 6
- you get certain benefits
- nobody else gets a Scottish Child Payment for the child
- you live in Scotland.
If you have more than 1 child under 6, you can get a payment for each child.
You must get 1 of these benefits:
- Child Tax Credit
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Pension Credit
- Universal Credit – if your UC is reduced to £0 by a sanction or a deduction, you can still get Scottish Child Payment
- Working Tax Credit.