The Scottish Government is encouraging those in Highland Perthshire and across Scotland, to check that they are not missing out on money and to find out if they could be eligible for any of the 12 benefits administered by Social Security Scotland.
The benefits which have been introduced over the past four years are available to people on low incomes, responsible for children under 16, those who need help paying for a funeral, disabled people, carers, young people entering the workplace and to help heat homes.
Minister for Social Security Ben Macpherson said: “January is traditionally a month where people find it harder financially than the rest of the year. This pressure can be more acute for people on low incomes or who face additional costs due to a disability or ill-health condition. The cost of living crisis also means that people are facing difficult financial decisions day in and day out.
“We are committed to making sure that people are getting all of the money that they are entitled to. That is why we are making payments automatically where we can. Where people need to apply, we are working hard to promote these payments and make the process of accessing them as straightforward as possible.
“Social Security Scotland works with partners and through advertising to promote our benefits and our next campaign will start this month to encourage parents and carers to apply for Scottish Child Payment.
“People can apply for all our benefits online, by phone, through the post or in person – whatever works best for them. We’ve designed the way we promote and deliver these benefits with the people who they are for to make sure that what we do works for them.
“We want people to talk with others they know about the support that is available. These payments are a shared investment in building a fairer society and no one should think twice about accessing what they are entitled to. Please look into what is available and apply if you think you could be eligible.”
Four of the payments, the Carer’s Allowance Supplement, Child Winter Heating Payment, Best Start Grant Early Learning Payment and Best Start Grant School Age Payment for those in receipt of Scottish Child Payment are all paid automatically, as is the new Winter Heating Payment which will be paid to an expected 400,000 people across Scotland when it is introduced next month.
Seven of the 12 benefits available are only available in Scotland, with the public asked to check what DWP benefits they could be eligible for to help maximise their income.
Eligible families, and carers can find out more and apply for social security payments at https://www.mygov.scot/browse/benefits/social-security-scotland or by calling Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222.
The Scottish Government’s Cost Of Living website, https://costofliving.campaign.gov.scot/ provides information and support for people who need urgent help with money, food or fuel.