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  • Writer's pictureKenneth Gibson MSP

New SNP Government Benefit for Young People starting Work

A new SNP Government funded benefit to support 16 to 24-year olds into work if they have been unemployed for six months opened for applications today, Monday 17 August.

Job Start Payment is a one-off £250 to help with the costs of starting a new job. The upper age limit rises to 25 for care leavers and the payment increases to £400 if the person has a child.

In its first year, it is estimated around 5,000 young people will benefit from this new financial support.

Social Security Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP said:

“I am delighted that our Job Start Payment is opens today for applications; it really couldn’t come at a better time to support our young people to take up job offers.

“Young people are among those whose job prospects have been hardest hit by this pandemic. As such, it is crucial that we support them and ensure they are at the heart of our economic recovery from COVID-19.

“Last week, we announced an additional £10 million for a range of measures to recruit and retain apprentices. Combined with our commitment of at least £50 million for youth employment and the Scotland’s Youth Guarantee, we will ensure no one is left behind.”

Kenneth Gibson MSP added:

“Securing a job can be a massive turning point for young people, but it can also bring financial pressures. Costs like travel, new work clothes, or childcare often have to be met before people get their first pay.

“The brand-new Job Start Payment will help young people with these costs, which can sometimes be a barrier to them taking up an offer and I encourage any eligible constituent to apply.”

Skills Development Scotland’s Director of Career Information Advice Guidance Operations, James Russell commented:

“This new payment will offer practical help to many young people who our advisers are supporting at this time. It will be especially important to those taking their next steps into employment and who may need additional support to begin the right career for them.”

To find out more and apply, go to or call 0800 182 2222.

The payment will be delivered by Social Security Scotland. To qualify, you must be 16-24 years old and have received a job offer for paid employment, be out of work and in receipt of one of the qualifying benefits: Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance and Universal Credit for six months or more at the time of the job offer.

If a care leaver, they can access this support up to 25 years of age. They also need to be on a qualifying benefit when they get the job offer. The job must average at least 12 hours per week, over four weeks and does not need to be permanent.

Social Security Scotland is promoting this benefit with the Department of Work and Pensions, Skills Development Scotland and local authorities to ensure young people are aware of it.


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