New pregnancy and baby payments to offset Tory austerity in Scotland



Poverty is a little less common, except for pensioners, in Scotland than in other parts of the UK.

It’s clearly still a disgrace that we have such levels of poverty in one of the world’s most affluent countries. We saw in the last budget, the lack of concern for the poor in the current UK government, in the recent budget, as they used wealth that could have reduced poverty to, instead, reduce taxation on middle and upper-earners.

That poverty is less common in Scotland seems due in large part to Scottish government initiatives. This has been confirmed in a report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation. See:

Poverty in Scotland 2018: The positive news that you won’t have heard from BBC Scotland

The role of the Scottish Government in combatting poverty has also been acknowledged in the UN report which made clear the ideological basis for increasing poverty in the UK. See:

Recognised: Scottish Government’s fight to stop life here becoming like Esther’s England

New evidence of the Scottish Government’s continuing efforts to compensate for the worst of Tory austerity emerged today:

Pregnancy and Baby Payment applications open on Monday 10 December. The first Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payments will be made before Christmas. The payment will see eligible applicants receive £600 for their first child, £100 more than the DWP Sure Start Maternity Grant it replaces. This payment also provides £300 for all subsequent children – meaning there is no cap on the number of children it supports, unlike the current UK Government equivalent. In addition to the Pregnancy and Baby Payment, by summer 2019, two additional early years payments will be introduced. The first £250 payment will be made around the time a child starts nursery, to help with the costs of early learning and a further £250 when they start school.’    

Notably, these benefits will be available to the parents of babies born in the last six months who already have a big brother or sister and had no support from the UK Government because they were not the first child.

A major factor in lower poverty rates is the availability of affordable housing. See this:

SNP Government builds affordable/social housing at almost twice the rate of Tories in England



3 thoughts on “New pregnancy and baby payments to offset Tory austerity in Scotland

  1. Graham MacLure November 21, 2018 / 10:38 am

    Slowly but surely battling the headwinds tacking Scotland towards social democracy with a strong steady hand and a keen weather eye at the tiller.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Contrary November 21, 2018 / 8:40 pm

    Of course, there should NOT BE ANY austerity in the first place, economically it’s not a viable strategy for running a country, then of course, we should NOT have to mitigate anything, we should be free to choose our own policies. But apart from that, good stuff.

    it’s interesting how the language has changed over the years regarding ‘the poor’ and poverty, as though it’s a state of being that cannot be changed, and you hear so many talking as though it’s their own fault, not a dysfunction in society (which it is). If there are jobs, and regulations on workers rights and minimum wage etc, there should not be any poor – people generally work when they can. But the whole system seems to be geared towards making it difficult these days; zero hours contracts, no small local economy (casual work) allowed, transient work discouraged, non-skilled work poorly paid and poor conditions. Things that should be basic needs, a safe place to live for instance, seem to be treated as luxuries by the uk government – landlords and housing need to be regulated.

    Anyway, you need a vibrant economy to keep people working, and so keep the money circulating (it’s the ‘poor’ that spend money, usually locally, after all), and we won’t get that with austerity.

    Liked by 2 people

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