Self-isolation Support Grant (Approval of Applications)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at on 24 March 2021.

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The First Minister:

I do not think that we need to have an urgent review, because we are reviewing the situation on an on-going basis, and the changes that we have already made to eligibility would bear that out. When we think that changes are required, we are responding to make sure that more people get access. We are seeing that the number of applications being approved is increasing. In January, awards were 33 per cent higher and applications were 36 per cent higher than was the case in December. Eligibility has, of course, been extended.

We will continue to look carefully at the situation. There is some variation between local authorities, although not necessarily all, and that is something that we need to look at carefully, but some of it will be explained by the fact that some local authorities have different supports in place. Self-isolation is part of a wider arrangement of how people are being supported. We look at that regularly and we will continue to make changes as we think necessary to ensure that people are getting the support that they need to self-isolate, because we know that self-isolation will continue to be a key part of our defence against Covid.