More than 160 million in support paid out across 11 benefits in 2021-2022.
Social Security Scotland has published its Annual Report and Accounts, which shows that it made 163.6 million in direct payments across 11 Scottish benefits from 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2022.
The combination of direct payments and those delivered through Agency Agreements with the Department of Work and Pensions saw the Scottish Government invest a total of 3.48 billion in benefits across Scotland.
The results of an annual survey of clients by Social Security Scotland have also been published, showing that people felt they were treated well, with staff commended for treating people with kindness', listening' and showing empathy'.
Among those who responded to the survey, 94% of people who had been in contact with staff agreed' or strongly agreed' that they were treated with kindness while 93% said their experience with staff was very good' or good' with a further 92% saying they felt they had been listened to.
The positive feedback matches the high standards reported last year, where 93% also said their experience with staff was very good' or good' and 92% saying they felt they had been listened to.
Minister for Social Security, Ben Macpherson, yesterday said:
Social Security Scotland's Annual Report and Accounts demonstrate the impact of delivering benefits that help tackle poverty and promote equality. We ensure money goes directly to people who need it most, including carers, disabled people and families on low incomes.
Next week our transformative Scottish Child Payment will be extended to all eligible young people under the age of 16 and increased to 25 per week per child - a 150% rise within 8 months of introducing this important benefit, which is only available in Scotland.
I am pleased Social Security Scotland have maintained high satisfaction levels in their service delivery, as evidenced in the latest Client Survey. We encourage all those who are eligible for support to apply, and are committed to treating everyone with dignity, fairness and respect.
Chief Executive of Social Security Scotland, David Wallace, yesterday said:
Four years ago, we began delivering our new social security service for Scotland after listening to people who had experience of the benefits system. They helped us create a service based on our values of dignity, fairness and respect and we continue to listen to them as we grow and deliver more benefits.
Our annual Client Survey reflects the work we have put in to deliver on our commitment and the fact that we managed to maintain such an exceptionally high level of client satisfaction through a period of significant growth is a source of immense pride for me. In fact, 96% of people surveyed told us they had received their benefit payments when we said they would. These results are testament to the care and pride our people take in their work. We have worked hard to build a diverse workforce of people who share our values that reflects modern Scotland. The year ahead will remain difficult for many of us but our commitment to our clients remains strong and we will continue to listen to their feedback as we develop our service and prepare to deliver new benefits.
- Social Security Scotland 2021/22 Annual Report and Accounts.
- The results of the Client Survey summary
- Charter Measurement Framework 2021-2022, a framework which tracks how well the new social security system is delivering on its commitments.
- Payments made last financial year were to clients receiving: Carer's Allowance Supplement, Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payment, Best Start Grant Early Learning payment, Best Start Grant School Age Payment, Best Start Foods, Funeral Support Payment, Young Carer Grant, Job Start Payment, Scottish Child Payment, Child Winter Heating Assistance and Child Disability Payment
- Adult Disability Payment pilot commenced in late March 2022, therefore there is no expenditure for this year.
- The payments are outlined in the Social Security Scotland Annual Report and Accounts 2021/22.
- The Annual Report and Accounts cover the period from 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2022.