Scottish Child Payment Regulations 2020: scrutiny report

The Scottish Commission on Social Security's scrutiny report on the draft Scottish Child Payment Regulations 2020 with recommendations for the Scottish Government.

Concluding remarks

One of the most important comments the Commission received during the scrutiny process came from a parent with lived experience of the social security system, and a prospective recipient of the SCP. Speaking at our stakeholder event, this individual observed that the success or failure of the SCP will ultimately be judged according to the impact that it has on the day-to-day lives of individual children who benefit. That will be the ultimate test.

As we stated in the introduction, the SCP has clear potential to improve living standards for children who receive it, and in doing so to contribute to the realisation of several of the social security principles. Our key recommendations invite the Scottish Government to do what it can to ensure this potential is fulfilled by eliminating barriers to take-up, maintaining the real value of the SCP and considering whether there is scope to remove cliff-edges at six years old and when household income increases. The introduction of the SCP is particularly significant as it is the first time the power to top up a reserved benefit has been used. This is one of a number of reasons why the aspiration to continuous improvement of the devolved system requires a thorough, open-minded review of the SCP, drawing on the expertise of actual and prospective recipients.

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