Bill passes Stage 1.
A Bill to tackle child poverty has been unanimously approved at its first stage by the Scottish Parliament.
The parliament has agreed to the general principles of the Child Poverty (Scotland) Bill which will see Scotland become the only part of the UK with statutory targets to reduce the number of children experiencing the damaging effects of poverty by 2030.
It also provides a strong framework by which progress can be monitored at a national and local level and the government will publish a three-year child poverty delivery plan by April 2018, which will be updated every five years, and annual reports to measure progress.
The Bill is part of the Fairer Scotland Action Plan which sets out the government’s overall strategy for tackling poverty and inequality in Scotland
Equalities Secretary Angela Constance said:
“This important Bill sets out our ambition to eradicate child poverty in Scotland, by requiring us to meet ambitious targets to reduce child poverty by 2030.
“We have consistently said that the fact one in four children in Scotland today are living in poverty is completely unacceptable and we must take action to resolve this – something this Bill sets out.
“We realise that tackling child poverty will require us to work together which is why the Bill includes national and local reporting requirements, and why it’s so important to hear the views of parliament and stakeholders.
“This Bill is a major step forward as we look to give our children the best start in life and I look forward to working with parliament to ensure that we do.”