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Move to Child Disability Payment complete for all kids

All disabled children and young people in Scotland who receive disability benefits will now be paid directly from Social Security Scotland.

Those children and young people who receive Child Disability Payment will also benefit from a review system different to that of the wider UK, one based on dignity, fairness and respect.

The latest figures show around 47,000 children and teenagers have had their awards moved to Child Disability Payment delivered by Social Security Scotland.

The transfers began in 2021 when the new benefit was launched to replace Disability Living Allowance for children, paid by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).

Around 76,000 disabled children and young people in Scotland now receive Child Disability Payment, including around 31,000 who applied since the new benefit was launched.

Child Disability Payment helps cover the extra costs of caring for a disabled or terminally ill child or young person.

Shirley-Anne Somerville, Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, said:

“One of the defining characteristics of the benefits system in Scotland is that people are treated with dignity, fairness and respect. Everyone in Scotland who previously received Disability Living Allowance for children from the UK Government now gets Child Disability Payment from Social Security Scotland. This has been a significant and important undertaking.

“The change means 47,000 more children in Scotland and their families can now look forward to less anxiety, less uncertainty and more financial security when their disability benefits come up for review.

“Social Security Scotland takes a human rights-based approach to reviews. The time between reviews is also set by case managers and can vary from two years to ten years. This is especially important for people with life-long disabilities and helps provide the financial security that is needed to pay for ongoing care and support.”

Rebecca, 40, from Edinburgh says her experience with Social Security Scotland since her son’s benefit was moved has been markedly better than under the UK system.

She said: “The transfer all went smoothly, but the biggest difference for me was when his yearly review came around. The DWP review is a 48-page document. Just writing down again and again, that nothing had changed.

“It used to be a couple of months of feeling anxious. Not knowing how the application was going to be scored this time.

“Even though nothing had changed, the person scoring it might have a different view from the person who did it the last time.

“You don't know if you're going to get any money at all, if you’ll get less or if it will be the same rate that you had before the review. It's difficult to plan ongoing support when there’s so much uncertainty.

“There was also always a kind of feeling that somebody was trying to catch you out with the DLA application. It's absolutely inhumane.

“This time when the renewal letter came through instead of saying, ‘You have to go through the whole traumatic process again,’ it was, ‘Has anything changed?’

“The short answer was, ‘No, my son still has cerebral palsy. There hasn’t been a miracle overnight.’ And that was accepted, what a difference.

“There are a lot of hard things about being in a family that's affected by disability. This was someone taking away one of those hard things.

“That has been fantastic and I'm incredibly grateful for the values that underpin Social Security Scotland.”

The review period for awards is decided on a case-by-case basis depending on the client’s condition and whether their needs are expected to change. Generally, review periods range from two to ten years.

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