HC Deb 25 July 2000 vol 354 cc533-4W
12. Mr. David Marshall

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will make a statement on poverty in Scotland. [130578]

Dr. Reid

The Government welcome the recent report by the Scottish Affairs Committee, chaired by my hon. Friend, on Poverty in Scotland, and will publish a full response. We are working in partnership with the Scottish Executive to combat poverty through, for example, the work carried out by the Joint Ministerial Committee.

The Government have taken major steps to eradicate poverty. Measures taken include: the Minimum Income Guarantee, which benefits poorer pensioners; the Working Families Tax Credit, which could benefit around 130,000 families in Scotland; the 36 per cent. increase in Child Benefit for the first child when comparing April 2000 with the amounts in 1997; the National Minimum Wage, which benefits around 100,000 employees in Scotland; and the New Deal, through which 25,000 young people in Scotland have found employment.