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6 reasons you should fill out the Scottish Government Consultation on Social Security (with musical accompaniment)

1) A change is gonna come

 

The Scottish Government is gaining some powers over social security. This includes control over certain entitlements such as the Sure Start Maternity Grant and Carer’s Allowance. It also includes power to change certain things around other entitlements such as how Universal Credit payments will be delivered.

We have an opportunity to say what this new social security system will look like!

2) Girls just wanna have fun(damental rights)

Women are twice as dependent on social security as men, with 20% of women’s income coming from the benefits and tax credits system. And between 2010 and 2020, 86% of the ‘savings’ raised through cuts will come from women’s incomes.

This is because women in Scotland don’t yet have equality (surprise!). Women are paid less, do a great deal more unpaid care work, and are less (financially and physically) secure than men.

It is therefore vital that women’s voices are heard in the consultation.

3) Independent Women

One of the key changes coming is over the delivery of Universal Credit. Universal Credit is something that women and women’s organisations have been concerned about for a long time, and this is a really important chance to push for change.

If Universal Credit is paid to one member in a household rather than to individuals, which is the current system in the UK, it will undermine the principles of equality and autonomy which should be at the heart of the social security system.

People should have access to the payments which are meant for them.

4) You don’t own me

Another concern about household payments of Universal Credit is the impact on women who are experiencing domestic abuse. Making payments to only one member of a couple gives that person financial control over the other, and can lead to women being trapped in abusive situations. When Engender and Scottish Women’s Aid spoke to women about these potential changes, responses included ‘very scary for women and children’, and ‘fundamentally unfair and dangerous’.

Household payments of Universal Credit undermine women’s safety.

5) I’m Every Woman

These changes to social security are likely to affect most women at some point in their lives.

You can help shape Scotland’s social security system to ensure that all women’s equality is at the heart of it.

6) Sisters are doing it for themselves

We want as many women as possible to fill out the consultation, so we’ve tried to make it as easy as we can! There’s a step-by-step guide to filling out the section on Universal Credit here, and of course you should feel free to answer any of the other questions as well!

There’s also a sign-up box to show your support for individual payments of Universal Credit, and stay up to date with any news.

Find out more and fill out the consultation here

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