Factsheet: Welfare reform & the impact on families in Scotland

Date: 24th November 2015
Category: Child poverty
Author: Child Poverty Action Group

A new factsheet is now available which provides a summary of UK Government reductions to the welfare budget since June 2010 and their impact on families in Scotland.

Since June 2010 the UK Government announced a number of reductions to the welfare budget amounting to nearly £74 billion by 2015/16. The Scottish Government estimates that the cumulative impact of these welfare reforms would result in the Scottish welfare bill being reduced by around £6 billion from 2010/11 to 2015/16.

It has been established that families with dependent children are one of the biggest losers - in Scotland, couples with children losing an average of more than £1,400 a year, and lone parents around £1,800 a year.

This CPAG factsheet is a summary of the cuts announced so far, and their impact on families in Scotland.

In a report to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child in July this year, Together highlighted that child poverty is predicted to increase at an alarming rate, to nearly 1 in 3 by 2020. The report highlights that the number of children accessing food banks has risen at an alarming rate, from 1,861 children (April 2011-March 2012) to 36,114 children (April 2014-March 2015) and that the Scottish Parliament Welfare Reform Committee is convinced that there is a direct correlation between welfare reform and the increase in use of food banks.

The report makes a number of recommendations as to how the Scottish Government could better protect, respect and fulfil every child's right to an adequate standard of living, as enshrined in Article 24 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).