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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-20880: Mark Griffin (Central Scotland)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 10 January 2019

To ask the Scottish Government, further to the answer to question S5W-20558 by Shirley-Anne Somerville on 8 January 2019, whether it will provide the information that was requested regarding what alternatives to accessing DWP data it has considered in order to mitigate the two-child benefit cap, and for what reason it did not provide this information in its answer.

Answered by: Shirley-Anne Somerville 24 January 2019

The two child limit is a UK Government policy which the Scottish Government has repeatedly called for to be scrapped. The changes announced by the UK Government last week show that it too now finally accepts that the policy is unfair. It should therefore scrap the cap for all families.

The Scottish Government plans to spend over £125m in 2018-19 mitigating the impact of UK Government welfare cuts and on measures to help protect people on low incomes. In 2020/21 UK Government cuts including the two child cap are expected to take around £3.7 billion out of the Scottish welfare system- with £92m in 2020-21 due to the two child limit and the Scottish Government cannot be expected to continually mitigate to fill that gap.

It is the policy of the Scottish Government to continue to call for the two child limit to be scrapped for all families. The Scottish Government would not request information from the DWP on mitigation as this is not an SG policy.