Scotland politics

Ministers pledge 'safe' transfer of new welfare powers to Scotland

Man in wheelchair Image copyright SPL
Image caption Some welfare powers, including ones that affect disabled people, will be transferred to Holyrood

Ministers at Holyrood and Westminster have pledged to "work together" to ensure the "safe transfer" of new welfare powers to Scotland.

Scottish Secretary David Mundell and Scotland's economy minister Keith Brown said they had had "productive" talks.

Powers over certain aspects of welfare and housing related benefits, including DLA/PIP, Attendance Allowance, Carers Allowance are to transfer to Holyrood.

The move was agreed in the Scotland Act 2016 which was passed in March.

Mr Mundell and Mr Brown were joined in the discussions, which took place earlier, by UK minister Stephen Crabb and Scotland minister Angela Constance.

A statement issued after the get-together said: "We had a very productive meeting which focussed on the importance of working together to ensure the safe transfer of these important powers, with those who stand to benefit at the forefront of discussions.

"We are pleased to be able to agree that work can progress to quickly commence a number of powers in the Scotland Act and to continue discussing the commencement of the remaining welfare sections in the act."

The ministerial team will continue to meet over the next 12 months as the new powers are devolved.

What will Holyrood be in charge of?

When the Scottish government receives the new welfare powers, it will be responsible for benefits worth about £2.7bn.

Universal Credit, Tax Credits and Child Benefit will continue to be controlled by Westminster. However, Holyrood will be able to make top-up payments to these reserved benefits.

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