Poverty-related Attainment Gap

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 23 March 2023.

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Photo of Nicola Sturgeon Nicola Sturgeon Scottish National Party

I thank Paul McLennan for that question. Again—this may be the last opportunity that I have to point it out—it is really obvious how uncomfortable the Conservatives in the chamber become when we talk about poverty. That should be noted.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies rightly acknowledges the impact that progressive choices are having for low-income families. To quote the IFS briefly, it highlighted that the Scottish Government

“has made clearly a distributional choice ... to channel a lot more money towards low-income families with children in particular and that has a meaningful impact on incomes.”

If I had to single out the thing of which I am most proud, it is that—helping to lift children out of poverty, in marked contrast to the approach of the UK Government’s welfare system, which pushes children into poverty. That is the difference—that is the contrast.