As you know we've been supporting women across Scotland to get involved in the Scottish Government's consultation on social security, and to make their voices heard on the experience panels that will help shape the new social security system in Scotland. Here is a message from the Minister for Social Security, Jeane Freeman MSP, following the publication of the Social Security (Scotland) Bill last week, to all women who have engaged in the process so far:
The anticipation is over. Last week, the Scottish Government tabled its social security legislation. Below, our policy manager Emma Trottier gives you a quick rundown of what’s what in the Social Security (Scotland) Bill.
Engender welcomes the introduction of the Social Security (Scotland) Bill. The Bill, tabled on Wednesday, is the latest step in the development and implementation of the Scottish social security system. It outlines the vision for the new social security system in Scotland, and maps the delivery of the devolved programs.
Today Engender, along with Scottish Women's Aid and Rape Crisis Scotland, have written to Damian Hinds, Minister of State for the Department of Work and Pensions asking ten questions about the implementation of the so-called 'rape clause'.
It has long been clear to us that both the ‘rape clause’ and the family cap which underpins it are unworkable policies (see our previous blogs here). We also know, however, that women in Scotland will be seeking information on how the UK Government intends to implement the policies, and how it will impact on their families, so we have written for clarity on a number of issues we don't believe have been fully thought through. You can read the letter below, and we'll be publishing a response as soon as we get one.
Our joint UK Parliament petition to scrap the ‘family cap’, including the ‘rape clause’, reached over 20,000 signatures in just its first weekend. This demonstrates the huge strength of feeling on this issue from people across the UK. In Scotland we have seen two large demonstrations, and statements of support from the leaders of four political parties, including First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
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