The current increase in the cost of living is challenging for many families living in, or at risk of, poverty in Scotland. With concern that surging costs will result in more people living in poverty and widen the health inequalities gap, Public Health Scotland (PHS) welcomes the new Scottish Government Tackling Child Poverty Delivery Plan (external website).

Poverty is a significant long term problem for people’s health, not least the health of children.

More than one in four children already live in relative poverty in Scotland, and many families will have lost jobs and income during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ensuring that the people of Scotland can afford an acceptable standard of living is key to improving the health and wellbeing of all children.

Claire Sweeney, Director of Place and Wellbeing at PHS, said:

“PHS supports actions to help lift low-income families out of poverty and to improve child health. The latest Scottish Government delivery plan details an increase in the Scottish Child Payment by the end of 2022 which is a welcome addition, particularly for those families living in poverty and on low incomes.

"We are committed to working with Scottish Government and other partners to support actions to help address child poverty and close the health inequalities gap in Scotland. By sharing national insight through data and public health evidence, we are working with partners to support the development of child poverty action plans to help tackle issues at a local level.

"Scottish Government recently launched a new website to help people access the financial support available. This resource and others, such as the Breathing Space website, offer vital support to anyone who is feeling particularly worried in these difficult times”.

To find out more about support for living costs, visit (external website).

To find out more about support with your mental health and wellbeing, visit (external website).

Last updated: 06 October 2022