Martin Whitfield MSP has welcomed a joint letter to the First Minister from the End Child Poverty Coalition calling for an immediate doubling of the Scottish Child Payment.
Over 100 charities and other anti-poverty campaigners have signed up to the letter, declaring that boosting the value of the Scottish Child Payment to £20 a week would combat poverty and should be brought forward as a priority in the next Scottish Budget.
The powerful coalition of organisations backing the call includes the Poverty Alliance, Child Poverty Action Group Scotland, Save the Children, Barnardo’s Scotland, Oxfam, The Trussell Trust and Children 1st.
Commenting on the call, Martin Whitfield MSP said:
“More than one in four children in Scotland already live in poverty, and without urgent action this is only going to get worse in the future.
“As things stand, not only are we set to miss our targets for reducing child poverty, but we are on track to undo the significant progress made tackling child poverty under the last Labour government.
“At the election Scottish Labour pledged to double the Scottish Child Payment immediately. We will continue to demand the government to do the right thing and get this money to those who so urgently need it.
“Every year that this vital increase is delayed is another year of families missing out – there is no time to waste. We have the powers to deal with this injustice in Scotland right now – all that is missing is the political will to make it happen.”