Young Carer Working Group minutes: January 2018

Minutes of the Young Carer Working Group meeting held on 31 January 2018.

Attendees and apologies


  • Lauren Baigrie, Member of Scottish Youth Parliament
  • Eddie Follan, CoSLA
  • Pamela Forsyth, Scottish Government, Programme Management and Delivery
  • Thomas Grant, Scottish Government, Social Security Policy
  • Paul Gualt, Young Scot
  • Kiran Haksar, Scottish Government, Carers Policy
  • Catherine Henry, Scottish Government Analyst
  • Greig Kennedy, Edinburgh Young Carers Forum
  • Rab Mackay, Scottish Government, Social Security Communications
  • Megan Marin, Edinburgh Young Carers Forum
  • Jo McCorriston, Falkirk and Clackmannanshire Carers Centre
  • Eileen McMurdo, Scottish Government, Business Analyst
  • Heather Noller, Carers Trust Scotland
  • Lois Ratcliffe, Edinburgh Young Carers Project
  • Kim Ratcliffe, Edinburgh Young Carers Forum
  • Ellen Searle, Scottish Government, Social Security Policy
  • Nicola Smith, Scottish Government, Social Security Policy
  • Jessica Tabarias, Scottish Government, Social Security Service Design
  • David Taggart, Scottish Government, Social Security Policy
  • Angela Toal, CPAG
  • Paul Traynor, Social Security Policy, Chair
  • Lisa Tweedle, Scottish Government, Social Security Agency Implementation
  • Nancy Woodhead, Scottish Government, Bus and Local Transport Policy


  • Louise Morgan, Carers Trust Scotland
  • Ellie Sandercock, Shared Care Scotland

Items and actions

Welcome and Actions from previous meeting

1. The chair welcomed members to the second meeting of the Young Carer Grant Working Group. Previous minutes and actions had been agreed in advance via email and were now on the Scottish Government website along with the group remit and membership.

2. Members were invited to note the proposed approach in paper YCG 1/2018 regarding young people caring for a person who has a substance misuse problem, that the Scottish Government was committed to increasing benefit uptake including for people with substance misuse problems, and that it was planned to direct people to wider support available.

ACTION: Analysts to review pre 2013 Disability Living Allowance data on those caring for a person with substance misuse problems to get a better understanding of the issue.

3. CoSLA representatives asked if there was a work plan or timeline in regards to what the group will be working on.

ACTION: Chair to circulate timeline presentation from meeting 1 to group members.

4. Members were invited to follow and retweet the Scottish Government’s Social Security twitter profile (@ScotGovSocSec).

Young Carer Grant overview and updates

5. The Chair noted that an update paper has been circulated prior to the meeting.

6. In response to a question about differences in the age range between Young Scot rewards and benefits for young carers and the Young Scot National Entitlement card, Carers Policy branch explained that the age range for the former was chosen to reflect the upper age definition of a young carer in the Carers (Scotland) Act 2016, and so aligns with young carer support in Scotland.

Young Carer Panel

7. The lead Scottish Government Analyst working on the Young Carer Panel provided an overview on the progress and introduced the workshop to take feedback from stakeholders on the approach and questions for the first panel sessions.

8. In response to a question on the difference between the age range of grant recipients and the panel members, it was explained that carers over 18 could have recent and valuable experience to help shape the grant for future recipients.

9. In response to a request from Young Scot, analysts agreed to consider sharing good practice learned from working with young carers through the Young Carer Panels.

ACTION: Scottish Government analysts will consider sharing good practice guidelines for working with young carers after sessions with the panel have commenced and lessons have been learned.

10. Members split into four smaller groups to input into question planning and formation for the Young Carer Panel. The following key points emerged to take into account when engaging with carers through the Panel:

  • The need to be sensitive in language used when engaging with young carers, including using the term “young adult carer” when appropriate, and also being mindful that not all young carers will identify in this way, or will be comfortable talking about their “caring role”
  • Recognising that there are sensitivities when discussing benefits in a group setting, as this may cause a level of embarrassment or discomfort for participants regarding disclosing benefits received by them or their cared for person, or admitting to not knowing that information
  • Consider that who the young person may trust and who the agency might think appropriate in being able to verify a caring role may differ
  • Consider how the receipt of payment might affect the young person more broadly, including the responsibility they may feel in terms of how they spend it, timing for when the payment is issued, and issues around safeguarding and choice.

11. The transcript of this exercise is set out in annex A.

Third Party Professional Verification

12. The Chair explained that in meeting 1 it had been agreed that verification of the caring role should be carried out via the planned Young Carer Statement or via a suitable third party. Members split into groups to input on who would be considered suitable verifiers, and rank on suitability.

13. Across all areas carer services and teacher/further education lecturer/higher education lecturer were noted in the top three preferences; with social work professional, citizens advice and benefits advisor, religion/faith leader and parent/family member ranking lowest.

14. The full results of this exercise are set out in annex B.


15. It was agreed that the group would meet again within the next two to three months.

ACTION: SG Secretariat to issue a doodle poll with date options for future meetings.


Action For Date
Analysts to review pre 2013 Disability Living Allowance data on those caring for a person with substance misuse problem to get a better understanding of the issue. Analyst Next meeting
Circulate timeline presentation from meeting 1 to working group members. Chair Within four weeks of the meeting
Consider producing good practice guidelines for working with young carers from lesson learnt from Young Carer Panel research sessions. Analyst By autumn 2019
Issue a doodle poll date options for future meeting. SG Secretariat Within four weeks of the meeting
Annex A and B.pdf



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