Dear Sally,

As you know, although there has regrettably been some changes to the social security progamme due to Covid-19, I am determined to proceed with the delivery of Child Winter Heating Assistance (CWHA) in Winter 2020. I am pleased to provide a copy of the draft Winter Heating Assistance for Children and Young People Regulations that are issued to SCoSS for formal scrutiny as required by section 97 of the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018.

In light of the replanning of social security in relation to Covid-19, these regulations separate out provisions relating to CWHA from the Disability Assistance for Children and Young People Regulations that were previously provided in draft to the Commission on 7 February.

I am proud to mark this milestone and to set out how, despite the challenging circumstances presented by Covid-19, we can offer additional support to disabled children and young people in Scotland through the social security system. It should be noted, however, that our ability to deliver this benefit in Winter 2020 is dependent on DWP providing the necessary data. Although joint work on this is progressing well, I am acutely aware of the operational pressures that the Department and its staff are under, as a result of the Covid-19 situation.

These regulations set out the detail of how CWHA will deliver an additional £200 payment to children and young people in receipt of the highest rate care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) each Winter. We know that these disabled children and young people, and their families, incur increased winter fuel costs for a number of reasons including a requirement to keep the home at a higher average temperature and to provide support and care through the night.

SCoSS’ scrutiny report relating to the Disability Assistance for Children and Young People Regulations provided a number of recommendations relating to provisions contained within those regulations that related to payment of Winter Heating Assistance. A number of revisions have been made to take account of those recommendations including:

  • clarification of the residency rules for entitlement to Child Winter Heating Assistance;
  • revision to the entitlement rules to ensure that clients awarded DLA retrospectively for the qualifying week as a result of, for instance, an appeal, can access Child Winter Heating Assistance;
  • and clarification that the payment is made on a ‘per individual’ basis rather than ‘per household.’

I would ask that SCoSS provide their scrutiny report on these regulations by 14 July 2020 to ensure that any recommendations provided can be considered before the regulations are laid shortly after Summer recess.

As ever, I am grateful for your continued work in ensuring that devolved social security delivers a system that meets the needs of the people of Scotland.

Yours sincerely,


Child Winter Heating Assistance: referral letter and regulations

14 May 2020 | 8 page pdf | 50.63 KB  Download Document

Draft Winter Heating Assistance regulations

Draft Winter Heating Assistance regulations: Policy note

14 May 2020 | 4 page pdf | 82.04 KB  Download Document

Draft Winter Heating Assistance regulations: Policy note

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