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Control of welfare benefits in Scotland: have your say

September 07, 2016

The Scottish Government is consulting with people across Scotland about how best to use the new social security powers devolved to it by the Scotland Act 2016. 

These powers include the ability to set income tax rates and thresholds, and control over a significant part of the welfare benefits system.

Social Security Secretary Angela Constance has said, "We want to gather views from as many people as possible from across Scotland about their own experience of benefits, and how they think the system could be improved in the future. While the Scotland Act does not go as far as we would wish in devolving powers – leaving 85% of benefit spending in the hands of the UK Government – we will always use all of the powers available to us in the best interests of Scotland."

Action for M.E. is developing a plan to respond to the consultation, which is considerable in scope and includes key areas which will have an impact on people with M.E. including the control of:

  • Personal Independence Payment
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Attendance Allowance 
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • some parts of Universal Credit. While full control remains reserved to Westminster, the Scottish Government will determine how often and by what method claimants are paid, and how much some claimants get for housing support.

You can respond to the consultation yourself by visiting the Consultation on Social Security in Scotland website and following the instructions there. It is possible to just answer questions that are relevant to you, and miss out entire sections that are not. The closing date for the consultation is Friday 28 October 2016.