The next payment of the Carer's Allowance Supplement will be made to carers on 14 December.
This will be the second payment of the supplement, paid twice a year, by Social Security Scotland. The first payment was made to 2,528 North Ayrshire carers in September 2018, backdated to April of this year.
The SNP Government now makes two supplementary payments totalling £442 per year, equivalent of an extra £8.50 per week, which is a 13% increase on the UK Government’s Carer’s Allowance.
Those who are eligible do not have to apply for the payment, as it is paid in automatically.
Social Security Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville MSP said:
“We want to make sure the contribution carers make is recognised, which is why we introduced this new supplement, putting an extra £442 in carers’ pockets this financial year.
“This investment of more than £30 million a year addresses the unfairness that Carer’s Allowance is the lowest of the working age benefits. Bringing it in line with Jobseeker’s Allowance was one of the first commitments we made in light of our new social security powers.”
Kenneth Gibson MSP added:
“Following the first payment, many carers have expressed how much of a different this has made.
“The SNP Government has done the right thing supplementing the Carer’s Allowance to make it equal with Jobseeker’s Allowance, recognising the tireless work carers do on a daily basis.
“I am pleased that over 2,500 carers in North Ayrshire are able to benefit from this and more than 73,000 in total across Scotland.”
Shona Moyes, 56, is a carer to her 16 year old son Gregor who has complex physical and learning disabilities said:
“I was forced to give up a well-paid job to care for my son. This has been both physically and emotionally demanding and has had a huge impact on the financial wellbeing of my family.
“For the SNP Government to recognise this and increase Carer’s Allowance is great news for me and all carers. And to introduce the Carer’s Allowance Supplement and implement it quickly is most welcome.”
Carer’s Allowance Supplement is paid to carers who were in receipt of Carer’s Allowance from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) on the qualifying date of 15 October. The next rounds of payments will be made in June and December 2019.