Summary of recommendations and observations
Recommendation 1: The Scottish Government should routinely assess whether uprating Regulations contain matters where stakeholders may have an interest and a contribution to make, and ensure adequate time is available for this.
Recommendation 2: The Scottish Government should review, in consultation with stakeholders, additional or different information that could usefully be included in section 77 reports. This would inform scrutiny, monitor risk and accord with the Scottish Government’s commitment to keeping its approach to uprating under review.
Recommendation 3: The Scottish Government should consult with stakeholders on any implications for devolved assistance of the UK Government’s consultation on aligning RPI methodology with that of CPI.
Recommendation 4: The Scottish Commission on Social Security welcomes the exemption of YCG from immigration-related restrictions and underlines the usefulness of monitoring numbers receiving it, including, specifically, people subject to immigration-related restrictions.
Observation: The amendment to the treatment of ‘funeral insurance’, to ensure applicants are not disadvantaged, where it concerns people with low or incomplete insurance, is a small but positive measure.
Recommendation 5: The Scottish Government is invited to explain how its decision not to uprate BSG is consistent with its child poverty goals and with the proposed introduction of the Scottish Child Payment and to consider their combined impact, in the round, on child poverty.
Recommendation 6: In the event that the decision not to uprate Best Start Grant is not a one-off, Section 77 reports should include figures for what its cumulative total value would have been had it been uprated annually and provide an equality impact assessment.