Publication - Consultation paper

Consultation on Job Grant

Published: 16 Jan 2019

We are seeking views on key eligibility criteria and format of the Job Grant, a new benefit which will be delivered by Social Security Scotland to support young people moving back into employment.

35 page PDF

523.3 kB

35 page PDF

523.3 kB

Contents
Consultation on Job Grant
Annex A: Job Grant - Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) Summary

35 page PDF

523.3 kB

Annex A: Job Grant - Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) Summary

1. At present we think that the Job Grant will apply equally to those affected by its provisions. The Job Grant is expected to have a positive impact, on young people aged 16 – 24 (up to 26 years old for care leavers) who have found work after a period of no paid employment for 6 months or more.

2. The Job Grant aims to help smooth the transition into work for young people on low incomes and reduce the risk of them being unemployed or economically inactive in later life.

3. Depending on take-up, it is estimated that the Job Grant could help to support around 4,000 young people per year who make the transition from unemployment to being in work.

4. The impacts on groups who share protected characteristics are set out below.

Age

5. The Job Grant is expected to have a positive impact on the 16 - 24 year old (up to 26 years old for care leavers)) age group who have higher levels of unemployment than the over 25 age group.

6. The 15 – 24 year old age group is recognised by the United Nations as a transition age between childhood to independent adulthood, from education to employment. In its document entitled ‘Definition of Youth’[8] the United Nations recognises the age group between 15 and 24 years as ‘Youth’. Evidence shows that these years as a young adult are a critical phase in a person’s life. A sustained period of being young and not in employment, education, or training (NEET) is known to have a long-term ‘scarring’ effect – leading to higher chances of unemployment and lower earnings when in work, as well as physical and mental health issues later in life[9].

7. Labour market statistics consistently demonstrate that the 16 -24 year old age group have a much higher unemployment rate than those aged over 25. People under 25 receive less in benefit payments and the National Minimum Wage (NMW) is also less than for over the over 25 age groups, making the transition into work more financially challenging.

8. A report published in May 2018 by the UK Social Security Advisory Committee, entitled ‘Young People Living Independently’[10] states that the under 25 year olds receive a lower basic benefit allowance than other claimants. For example, single young people on Universal Credit, who do not have dependent children, a declared disability, or caring responsibility receive up to £251.77 per month to cover all basic living costs outside of housing – 26% less than those aged 25 and over. The rates for those in receipt of Jobseeker’s Allowance or Income Support are also lower for the younger age group.

9. In addition to receiving less in benefit payments than those aged over 25, young people entering employment are likely to earn less than people over 25 due to the National Minimum Wage structure. This can be seen in the National Minimum Wage table for 2018/19 below.

Age Apprentice Under 18’s 18-20 21- 24 25 and over
Hourly rate £3.70 £4.20 £5.90 £7.38 £7.83

10. In providing additional support for 16-24 year olds (and 16-26 year old care leavers) through Job Grant we are looking to help reduce the inequality that exists between younger and older members of the workforce.

Disability

11. The Job Grant is expected to have a positive impact for disabled young people who find work.[11] The employment rate for young people classed as disabled under the Equality Act 2010 was 32.4% which is lower than the employment rate of 46.1% for total disabled population (16-64) and 81.4 for non-disabled population as a whole. In addition, the unemployment rate is higher among disabled people (10.2%) compared to the non-disabled population (3.1%).[12]

12. The initial EQIA scoping exercise highlighted that some young people, with long term health conditions or disabilities, would have found themselves excluded from the Job Grant. This was not our intention, therefore to help include more disabled young people a decision was made to extend the scope of the Job Grant by extending the list of qualifying benefits to include Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) - Support Group. Although those young people in the ESA Support Group are not required to look for work, should they decided to look for, and find work we would wish them to be able to receive the Job Grant.

13. There will, however, be some disabled people who are not claiming a benefit and therefore they will not be eligible to claim the Job Grant.

14. In order to make the process for applying for the Job Grant accessible for people with a range of needs and preferences and to maximise take up, there will be multiple application channels.

Gender reassignment

15. No issues have been raised by stakeholders in regards to this protected characteristic group and we do not expect the Job Grant to negatively impact on this group. We would welcome any comments or evidence in relation to this area.

Marriage and civil partnership

16. No issues have been raised by stakeholders in regards to this protected characteristic group and we do not expect the Job Grant to negatively impact on this group. We would welcome any comments or evidence in relation to this area.

Pregnancy and maternity

17. No issues have been raised by stakeholders in regards to this protected characteristic group and we do not expect the Job Grant to negatively impact on this group. We would welcome any comments or evidence in relation to this area.

Race

18. No issues have been raised by stakeholders in regards to this and we don't expect it to negatively impact on this group. The Job Grant will be payable to anyone who meets the eligibility criteria, regardless of their race.

19. DWP estimate that in Scotland people from [13] Asian, Black, Mixed and White Other groups were more likely than White British people to claim Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) for 13 weeks or less.

20. We acknowledge that Asylum Seekers cannot claim any benefits and if they are destitute they must apply to the Home Office for assistance, but have no recourse to public funds so will not be eligible for the Job Grant. Those who are granted refugee or humanitarian protection status (after 5 years, they can apply for indefinite leave to remain) can claim benefits and therefore would be eligible for Job Grant if they meet the key eligibility criteria.

21. There can be a gap between refugee status being granted and people accessing benefits and housing. The Social Security Scotland agency may need to consider evidence requirements during this period e.g. on National Insurance Numbers.

Religion or Belief

22. No issues have been raised by stakeholders in regards to this and we don't expect it to negatively impact on this group. The Job Grant will be payable to anyone who meets the eligibility criteria, regardless of their religion or belief.

23. However, we acknowledge that Scottish Muslims have lower employment rate than other religious groups. In Scotland in 2016[14], the highest employment rates were seen for those with no religion (74.2%) followed by Christians (72.8%), Other religion (69.2%), Buddhists (68.5%), Hindus (61.9%) and Muslims (50.5%). The employment rate for Scotland as a whole was 72.9% in 2016.

Sex

24. Young men in the 16 – 24 year old age group have slightly higher levels of unemployment (10.1%) than females of the same age (8.2%)[15]. The Job Grant will have a positive impact on this group. We would welcome any comments or evidence in relation to this area.

Sexual orientation

25. No issues have been raised by stakeholders in regards to this protected characteristic group and we do not expect the Job Grant to negatively impact on this group. We would welcome any comments or evidence in relation to this area.

Question(s):

Question 10: Are you aware of any impacts on groups who share protected characteristics we have not identified here? Y/N

Question 11: If yes, please provide details


Contact

Email:
SSPD Job Grant Eligibility Consultation
JGEligibilityConsultation@gov.scot