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Parents urged not to miss out on disability support

Cabinet Secretary meets pupils with disabilities in school coffee bar
Cabinet Secretary meets pupils with disabilities in school coffee bar

Parents of disabled children are being urged to make sure they’re not missing out on vital financial support from the Scottish Government.

Child Disability Payment is money to help families cover the extra costs of looking after a child or young person who is disabled, has a long-term health condition or is terminally ill.

Since being introduced in 2021, over 78,000 children and young people have received the payment, with more than £500 million being paid out in total.

Social Justice Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville met parents and children at Carrongrange High School in Grangemouth to hear about their experiences of applying for and receiving the benefit and to urge other parents to apply.

Child Disability Payment, paid by Social Security Scotland, has replaced Disability Living Allowance for Children from the Department for Work and Pensions.

The devolved benefit, designed in partnership with parents of disabled children and charities, was designed to be as straightforward and stress free as possible.

Light touch reviews were introduced for children whose condition has not changed since the original application was made. This means children with lifelong disabilities do not need to face ongoing lengthy reviews to continue getting financial support.

Social Justice Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville said:

“Children and young people with a disability, long-term health condition or terminal illness often have additional needs and the costs for families can add up.

“Far too many families found the previous DWP scheme complicated and stigmatising. We were determined to change that and hearing from parents shows that we have.

“The Scottish Government’s social security systems is built on encouraging people to apply, supporting them in the process and getting the decision right first time.”

“I’m pleased Child Disability Payment is there to support families who need extra help and I urge anyone whose child is eligible to apply.

“It’s money they’re entitled to and could help make life a bit easier.”

Catherine Sneddon, 37, Grangemouth, whose son receives Child Disability Payment said:

“Louis has been on Disability Living Allowance since he was diagnosed in 2013. Back then I didn’t know if he’d be able to claim and it was a constant battle with the DWP.

“It’s only recently that he’s transferred over to Child Disability Payment. It was much more plain sailing than I anticipated. I expected a fight and what I got was a questionnaire through the post. The level of care he gets has been the same for three years so I ticked the box saying, ‘he’s stable.’ And that was it.

“With the DWP I would have had to get a letter from his neurologist to prove he still needed Disability Living Allowance. For them your child is what they see on the form. They don’t know how hard it is to care for a child with a disability at home, at school and in the community.

Janine Proudlock, Headteacher at Carrongrange High School in Grangemouth said:

“For me the Child Disability Payment supports families to ensure they have the right resources, at the right to time to do the right work to allow the whole family to flourish.

“Whether it’s caring support or specialised resources to meet their child’s needs, this is essential money to improve the lives of the young people and their family.”


Child Disability Payment provides money to help with the extra care and mobility costs disabled children and young people may have.

Weekly payment rates for care and mobility needs vary from £28.70 to £108.55 per week depending on level of help and support needed.

People can find out more and apply by visiting or by calling Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222.

Those previously getting Disability Living Allowance for Children from the DWP have now had their awards automatically transferred to Social Security Scotland and they do not need to make a new application. Awards continued to be made at the same rates as clients’ previous Disability Living Allowance for children payments and there was no break in entitlement in line with our commitment to a safe and secure transfer.

Child Disability Payment was the first of the three complex disability benefits to be introduced by the Scottish Government that are replacing current UK disability benefits in Scotland. Adult Disability Payment was introduced in 2022, and regulations to introduce Pension Age Disability Payment later this year have been laid in parliament.

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