Around 22,000 households are to be alerted by the Scottish government to the fact they may be eligible to extra forms of financial support if they’re struggling.
Best Start Foods and Best Start Grants are designed to help people who claim certain benefits and have children of specific ages.
The government has said it will be sending out letters in the coming weeks to people who it thinks could qualify for those schemes and who may be eligible to claim the extra financial help they’ve been created to provide.
Sending out letters in this way has been adopted as a new policy by authorities in Edinburgh because the government wants to take a more proactive approach to encouraging take up of benefits and financial support mechanisms.
Information gathered with the help of the Department for Work and Pensions and HMRC will be used to identify anyone who could be entitled to claim extra cash.
Expectations are that Social Security Scotland will have sent out thousands of letters to all potentially eligible claimants of ‘Best Start’ funds before the end of August.
“Social security is a human right and an investment in the people of Scotland,” said social security secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville.
“We are committed to making sure that people get all of the money that they are entitled to - to help maximise incomes and tackle poverty,” she added.
Ms Somerville went on to suggest that the impact of Covid-19 and the lockdown it made necessary has pushed huge numbers of Scottish families into more financial trouble and made it perhaps more important than ever that people claim whatever state benefits they’re entitled to.
“It’s important families are informed about the support available to them,” Ms Somerville said. “We must do all that we can to eradicate child poverty and make Scotland the best place in the world to grow up.”
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The Scottish government has said it will be providing local authorities across the country with an extra £30 million to help them tackle financial insecurity in their areas.
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