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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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Local MP Backs Calls for Full Welfare Devolution

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Banff & Buchan MP Dr Eilidh Whiteford has welcomed the call from the SNP’s Conference in Perth for the Scottish Parliament to have full responsibility for benefits and welfare so it can tailor its kinship support to the individual needs of Scotland.

The SNP’s Dr Whiteford also welcomed the overwhelming support for a resolution calling on the Scottish Government to develop a new Kinship Care Order, enshrining in law the rights of carers.

Commenting Eilidh said:

“We need the UK Government to pass responsibility for benefits and welfare to the Scottish Parliament so that we can better support children and families involved in kinship care.

“The SNP in Government has done more than any previous administration to support kinship carers and our upcoming Children and Young People Bill will recognise the rights and responsibilities of kinship carers for the first time by putting a new order on statute to support their role.

“This will provide a clear route to a permanent home for many vulnerable children, reflecting the close family bonds between the child and the carer and the different expectations and circumstances compared with other forms of care.

“It will also provide the basis for carers to access any wider support already available to parents to help them stay in, or find work and access appropriate benefit entitlements.

“No other administration has gone as far to support kinship carers as the SNP have – the Labour-led executive between 1999 and 2007 failed to take any action.

“The UK Government’s failure to act on this issue demonstrates how vital it is that decisions on benefits that affect the people in Scotland should be taken here in Scotland.”

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