The Scotland Act 2016 devolved powers over eleven social security benefits (including Carer's Allowance) providing Scotland with some, albeit limited, opportunity to differentiate itself in terms of welfare policy progressivity. The Carers (Scotland) Act 2016 set out the strategy for supporting those who limit their employment or educational enrolment due to the responsibility of caring for an adult or child with a health condition. Using a microsimulation of Scottish data from the Family Resource Survey, this article explores the potential impact, on income and poverty rates of carer households, of raising the level of CA by various amounts and by changing the eligibility criteria. It concludes that, while the Scottish Government's ambitions are too modest to fully support their progressive rhetoric, or to change the overall income inequality landscape, the reforms in targeted policy do make a substantial difference to the lived experience to carers in poverty and, by extension, to the receipt of that care.
- social security