Scotland’s new public service to make first social security payments.

Argyll and Bute MSP Michael Russell has welcomed the news that carers will receive the first payments of the new Carer’s Allowance Supplement from mid-September, back-dated to April.

This new benefit will be paid twice a year by Social Security Scotland, the first major new public service to be created since devolution.

Eligible carers will get a supplementary payment of £221, equivalent of an extra £8.50 per week, an increase of 13% on Carer’s Allowance from the Department of Work and Pensions.

The Carer’s Allowance Supplement is worth more than £30 million a year and will benefit 982 Carers in Argyll and Bute.

Carers will receive letters from Social Security Scotland from week beginning 10 September so that they know in advance to expect a payment.

SNP MSP for Argyll and Bute, Michael Russell said:

“This roll out of the Carer’s Allowance Supplement marks the beginning of a bright new chapter in Scottish public service.

“The SNP is committed to delivering a fairer system for social security:  one that affords carers the dignity and respect they are due as a result of their selfless dedication.

“We appreciate the contribution carers make to our society and we have always advocated that Carer’s Allowance should be the same rate as Jobseeker’s Allowance.

“It follows that the new powers over social security mean that we can make this a reality and put more money into the pockets of carers as a thank you for their tireless efforts.”

SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT IN WORLD FIRST

SNP MSP Michael Russell has welcomed the news that free sanitary products will be available to pupils, students and learners at schools, colleges and universities across Scotland thanks to £5.2 million Scottish Government funding.

Delivering on the SNP’s Programme for Government commitment to fight ‘period poverty’ in Scottish schools, colleges and universities – this initiative makes the Scottish Government the first in the world to make free sanitary products available to all pupils and students.

Following a successful pilot scheme in Aberdeen last year, the Scottish Government also provided the charity, FareShare, with over £500,000 to distribute free sanitary products to women on low incomes across the country.

Argyll and Bute MSP, Michael Russell said:

“The SNP Government’s £5.2 million investment in free sanitary products will allow students in Argyll and Bute and indeed all of Scotland to remain focused on what matters – their studies.

“Basic sanitary provision is a right, not a privilege.

 

“The notion that anyone should struggle to buy essential hygiene products is simply not acceptable and we should be proud that Scotland is leading the way in the fight against period poverty.

 

“I would encourage everyone to get firmly behind initiatives like this, including the UK government.”