John Swinney

Scotland’s Deputy First Minister has claimed UK Government policies have created more poverty after a report advised the variety of youngsters residing in poverty in Scotland had risen since 2017.

Speaking to BBC Scotland on Thursday night, John Swinney mentioned the Scottish Government was performing towards a “tide” of assorted modifications from the UK Government that “create more poverty”.

A briefing paper printed by Audit Scotland on Thursday confirmed round 1 / 4 of youngsters in Scotland have been residing in poverty between 2017-20, a rise of 3% since figures collated between 2011 and 2014.

“Child poverty is lower in Scotland than it is in other parts of the United Kingdom and that’s a consequence of steps we have taken in relation to measures such as the Scottish Child Payment,” Mr Swinney mentioned.

“The problem we face in all of those issues is that we are attempting to take measures to deal with the difficulty of kid poverty, however we’ve received to behave towards a tide of assorted modifications in coverage within the UK Government which frankly, create more poverty.

“So the modifications in profit coverage by the UK Government have created more poverty in Scotland.

“The resolution the UK Government took to scale back Universal Credit creates more poverty in Scotland.

“We have to do as a lot as we probably can do with the sources we have now out there to us to scale back youngster poverty.”

The Perthshire MSP argued the Scottish Government was making progress in tackling poverty and mentioned a spread of policies have been in place such because the Scottish Child Payment and the Scottish Attainment Challenge.

He mentioned: “I would defy anybody to challenge the value of policies such as school clothing grants or the work we are doing on the pupil equity funding in trying to tackle and reduce levels of poverty.”

Ahead of the Chancellor’s mini-budget on Friday, Mr Swinney voiced considerations it could be a “renewed attack” on already susceptible individuals.

Liz Truss becomes PM
Newly put in Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng will announce a mini-budget on Friday (Kirsty O’Connor/PA)

He added: “If we face the wave of measures taken by the UK Government, more of which we’ll in all probability see tomorrow, that are designed to assault those that are already in poverty and create more poverty, we’ve received a much bigger problem we have to deal with.

“What I concern goes to return tomorrow is a renewed assault on essentially the most susceptible individuals.

“I believe the UK Government will take measures that can, frankly, improve poverty and inequality in our society.

“The problem we face in making an attempt to deal with these points will stay all of the graver as a consequence of the choices the UK Government take.”

Mr Swinney argued for public spending to be prioritised and mentioned the Scottish Government funds was underneath “acute pressure” as a result of impact of rising inflation.

He urged the UK Government to rethink the proposed scrapping of the nationwide insurance coverage rise that had beforehand been put in place by former chancellor Rishi Sunak.

Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng confirmed the transfer forward of his mini-budget within the House of Commons on Friday after Prime Minister Liz Truss pledged to scrap the hike in the course of the Conservative management election in the summertime.

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