Social Security Experience Panels: benefit take-up – report

This report covers findings from research with Social Security Experience Panels members about their experiences of accessing the benefit system.

This document is part of a collection

Supporting the most vulnerable 

A number of participants spoke about how it was harder for particular groups of people to access the support that they were entitled to. Some talked about how it was particularly hard for people that were homeless to access the benefits system. Others said that it was difficult for people they knew who had no internet to access what they were entitled to. Several spoke about how it was difficult for people that were experiencing domestic violence to access the support that they were entitled to. 

"A lot of people are homeless, and they might not know about the benefits."

"There's the digital problem. Not everyone can use a computer. But then they are disadvantaged."

"Domestic violence can mean that it's very hard to access benefits. An abusive partner can be financially controlling."

Research with Seldom Heard Groups

To understand the unique barriers and needs of those who are less likely to part in the Experience Panels research, the Scottish Government has established five different research projects with different 'Seldom Heard Groups'. The purpose of this research is to learn about what barriers face these population groups and how Social Security Scotland can be designed to ensure that they are able to access what they are entitled to.

The five research strands cover: 

  • Mobile Populations 
  • Vulnerable Groups (including offenders, veterans, those with HIV / Hepatitis, those with experience of homelessness)
  • Those who are terminally ill / suffering from bereavement
  • Survivors of abuse
  • Carers and those who are care experienced. 



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