By Lucy Ashton

Recent analysis from Citizens Advice Scotland found that half of Scots are being forced to cut back on household spending.

MSP Natalie Don told Nicola Sturgeon: “The main levers to address that crisis reside in Westminster, which is an institution that cannot be trusted to concern itself with the plight of ordinary people.

“What conversations has the First Minister had with the Prime Minister [Rishi Sunak], left, about the inadequacy of the United Kingdom Government’s response to the crisis that it created?”

Ms Sturgeon told her: “When I met the Prime Minister a couple of weeks ago, I urged him, as the Scottish Government does more generally on a regular basis, to take more action to help people who are struggling with the basic necessities of life because of the cost of living crisis, which continues to affect the livelihoods, lives and, increasingly, the health and well-being of people across the country.

“The key policy levers are held by the UK Government, and we will continue to press it to use all the levers at its disposal to tackle the emergency. That includes access to borrowing, providing benefits and support to households.

“We will also continue to take action ourselves. We have allocated almost £3 billion in this financial year to help, and we have, of course, increased the Scottish child payment by 150 per cent in less than eight months to £25 per eligible child per week.”

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