Over the next 3 years more than 25,000 single parents in Scotland will be affected by changes to Welfare Benefits introduced by the Westminster Government. The stated rationale for the changes is to tackle child poverty through engaging more lone parents in employment. However, we are concerned as to whether the infrastructure in Scotland that will be needed to support single parents into employment is going to be adequate for the task.
OPFS submission says welfare reform and the freezing of social security payments are the key cause of a dramatic increase in child poverty in single parent families. OPFS says parents need a social security system which recognises their particular needs and provides an adequate safety net as well as playing a role in preventing poverty.
OPFS welcomes commitment that the Scottish Social Security Agency will treat those who use the service with dignity, respect and fairness.
OPFS replied to the Scottish Parliament’s Social Security Committee inquiry into social security and in-work poverty. The Committee’s focus is on the potential impact of Universal Credit on in-work poverty and indications of increasing needs in working households.
OPFS recognises that for many families headed by a single parent, maintaining a healthy diet is a daily financial challenge, particularly in the context of punitive UK welfare reform. There is strong evidence of the impact of diet in children’s early years.
Submission from OPFS to the Welfare Reform Committee concerning the future delivery of employment support.
To contribute to the Scottish Governments Child Poverty Delivery Plans OPFS undertook an on-line and
paper-based survey on single views on the impact of poverty and what they felt government
One Parent Families Scotland (OPFS) and Child Poverty Action Group in Scotland (CPAG) have published a new report today on the the impact of the lower Benefit Cap which was introduced in November 2016 to £20,000 per annum (£13,400 for single people without children). …
OPFS warmly welcomes the Child Poverty (Scotland) Bill. We are extremely pleased that the Bill contains a duty to eradicate child poverty and that there are clear and identifiable targets about when and how this should be achieved. We particularly welcome the fact …
OPFS submission to DWP closing Glasgow jobcentres
OPFS believes closure of half of Glasgow’s job centres will have a devastating impact on parents who rely on the service.
The devolution of employability services to Scotland is important because it offers opportunities to the Scottish Government to make changes which could actively support single parents to overcome some of the barriers they face. It argues the proposal that claimants …
The consultation on the Scottish Government’s proposals for a Child Poverty Bill includes: Enshrining in legislation our ambition to eradicate child poverty Reinstating statutory income-based targets to reduce the number of children living in poverty Placing a duty on Scottish Ministers to …
There are many aspects of the Welfare Reform and Work Bill which give us very grave cause for concern. The Bill will weaken the Child Poverty Act, introduce greater conditionality and sanctions and make severe cuts to a range of social security and tax credit entitlements. This briefing concentrates on a number of key clauses (7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 15).
We recently carried out a survey of single parents in Glasgow asking about their policy priorities.Three key areas are: childcare; welfare reform and employment.
We have submitted evidence to the Scottish Parliament Welfare Reform Committee on the Future Delivery of Social Security in Scotland, indicating that we want to see newly devolved social security powers for Scotland reflect SCoWR principles.
Having consulted single parents about their key concerns and the kind of changes that could make a difference to their families, we propose five cross-cutting themes and ten policy priorities to help tackle child poverty.
We have submitted evidence to the Scottish Parliament's Welfare Reform Committee inquiry on women and welfare reform, highlighting that the fear and threat of sanctions is sometimes forcing mothers into making decisions they would not choose, as parents, to make in the best interests of their children.
Our submission to the Work and Pensions Committee Inquiry into Benefit Sanctions focuses on conditionality and the revised benefits sanction regime, which is having a huge impact on single parents and their children.
We have taken the lead with Action for Children and other children’s organisations to lobby Westminster for changes to be made to the Welfare Reform Bill around conditionality and childcare as well as making clear our concerns around changes to Child Maintenance.
One Parent Families Scotland has a number of significant concerns about the UK Government’s Welfare Reform proposals, and especially about the risk of sanctions being imposed upon lone parents unable to access work due to a lack of suitable childcare.
- We led, along with Action for Children, a UK wide alliance of over 40 organisations which lobbied MPs and then Peers during the House of Commons and subsequent House of Lords’ consideration of the legislation. The aim of the campaign was to try and prevent sanctions being imposed upon lone parents.
- We have worked with Baroness Ruth Lister to ensure Scottish concerns around welfare reform are raised in the House of Lords.
- We have had meetings with DWP Universal Credit officials in London.
- We have met with Lord Freud on issues affecting lone parents around welfare reform.