Putting more money in carers’ pockets

Shirley-Anne Somerville says the payments represent a historic moment.
Shirley-Anne Somerville says the payments represent a historic moment.

Carers will receive the first payments of the new Carer’s Allowance Supplement from mid-September, back-dated to April.  

This new benefit will be paid twice a year by Social Security Scotland, the first major new public service to be created since devolution.

Eligible carers will get a supplementary payment of £221, equivalent of an extra £8.50 per week, an increase of 13 per cent on Carer’s Allowance from the Department of Work and Pensions.

Cabinet Secretary for Social Security, Shirley-Anne Somerville, said: “Making these payments will represent a historic moment, launching a new public service that will deliver a social security system that treats people with dignity, fairness and respect.

“We recognise the important contribution carers make, and we believe the current total paid out to them is not enough. This supplementary payment allows us to get more money in the pockets of carers in Scotland as quickly as possible.

“We have always made clear we believe that Carer’s Allowance should be the same rate as Jobseeker’s Allowance. Having new powers over social security means we can make this a reality and this additional payment is in recognition of  the important contribution carers make to society.”

The Carer’s Allowance Supplement is worth more than £30 million a year and will benefit more than 75,000 carers.

Carers will receive letters from Social Security Scotland from this week so that they know in advance to expect a payment.

Carers are not required to do anything to receive this payment as, if eligible, it will happen automatically and be paid using the same method that people get their Carer’s Allowance from the DWP.