Good Food Nation - programme of measures: 2019 update

A report on the progress made on Scotland's Good Food Nation ambitions.

2. Social Justice


The vision is for everyone in Scotland to have the means to have ready access to the healthy, nutritious food they need.

Highlighted Social Justice measures setting out action we have taken to achieve the vision since 2018:

Fair Food Fund

2018 position: As set out in the Programme for Government we will be increasing the Fair Food Fund budget from £1.5 million to £3.5 million in 2019-20. This will enable us to continue our work to promote food delivery models that embrace the dignified food principles.

2019 update: Our Fair Food Fund has been progressively increased and is now £3.5 million. This fund supports dignified responses to food insecurity which help to tackle the causes of poverty. It is evolving the response away from charitable and towards human rights approaches. In January, we published an evaluation[20] of the Transformation element of the fund from 2016-18 : See further details in the case study overleaf.

Case Study – Fair Food Fund

Our Fair Food Fund is now £3.5 million. It is designed to support dignified responses to food insecurity and has funded initiatives such as community meals, low cost community food pantries and links to further money advice and support.

In January 2019, we published an evaluation[21] of the Transformation element of the fund from 2016-18 which showed that projects have been able to help families to access healthy food and reduce social isolation in welcoming peer support settings. It also highlighted the importance of referrals to wider advice and support to help people increase their income and reduce the need for food provision.

In 2019-20, our focused approach[22] to school holiday support will mean that over 60,000 children will have access to activities and nutritious food.

We know that income is a key driver of food insecurity during the school holidays – our new Scottish Child Payment, worth £10 a week per eligible child, will lift 30,000 children out of poverty once rolled out in full by the end of 2022. Payments for eligible families with a child under 6 will be made by Christmas 2020.

Boosting incomes

2018 position: Scottish Government has a broader and more structured approach to boosting incomes in general, as set out in the Every Child, Every Chance: The Tackling Child Poverty Delivery Plan.

2019 update: The first progress report[23] on action committed within the Tackling Child Poverty Delivery Plan was published in June 2019. This report captures the unique offer available to children and families in Scotland and provides updates on all of the actions committed:

Key progress made in 2018-19 includes:

  • Increasing the minimum level of School Clothing Grants in Scotland to £100 for every eligible child;
  • Launching Fair Start Scotland, Scotland's new employability service;
  • Making the first payments of the Carer's Allowance Supplement. The supplement was worth £442 in 2018-19.
  • Launching the new Money Talk Team Service (previously known as Financial Health Check);
  • Announcing plans for a new Scottish Child Payment to low income families in receipt of qualifying benefits, paid on a monthly basis by Social Security Scotland – worth £10 per child per week.

Living wage

2018 position: Actions being taken to promote the payment of the living wage.

2019 update: We are in the second year of our three year plan to build a Living Wage Nation and we have made substantial progress. Since 2018 we secured an uplift in the hourly rate of over 8,105 employees across Scotland – as part of our ambition to achieve at least an additional 25,000 uplifts by 2021 through employer accreditation. This is putting more money in the pockets of families across Scotland.

We committed a further £380,000 to the Poverty Alliance for 2019‑20 to build upon the growth in workers receiving the real Living Wage and drive up accreditation.

Measuring food insecurity

2018 position: A commitment to measuring food insecurity in Scotland.

2019 update: We are measuring food insecurity through the Scottish Health Survey, following recommendations from the Independent Working Group on Food Poverty. UK Government announced in February that it would be following our lead. The latest data[24] shows that 9% adults experienced food insecurity in 2018.

Human rights and rights of the child

2018 position: We have a Programme for Government commitment to Incorporate the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into Scots law and the work of the First Minister's Advisory Group on Human Rights Leadership.

2019 update: In 2016, we accepted the recommendation of an Independent Working Group on Food Poverty to consider enshrining the right to food. A new National Taskforce for Human Rights Leadership will be co-chaired by Professor Alan Miller and the Cabinet Secretary for Social Security and Older People. The new taskforce met for the first time on 2nd October 2019.

The Taskforce will take forward recommendations from the Advisory Group on Human Rights Leadership (December 2018) – in particular the proposal for a new Act of the Scottish Parliament to incorporate internationally-recognised human rights into Scots Law. The taskforce will be asked to consider all internationally-recognised human rights, which includes the right to food.

The taskforce will develop and publish its proposed programme of work in due course. The expectation is that the taskforce will develop proposals for a new "Scottish Bill of Rights", to be published before the end of March 2021.

We are committed to incorporating the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) into Scots Law. We will deliver the legislation needed to do this by the end of March 2020. Our consultation on how a new Act could incorporate the UNCRC closed on 28 August and we will respond to this in the coming months.



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