Young people are being urged to check if they are eligible for the Scottish Government's Job Start Payment.

Elena Whitham, MSP for Carrick, Cumnock, and Doon Valley, is encouraging young people and care leavers on benefits to check whether they are eligible for the support payment following recent changes to the application process.

The Job Start Payment was launched in 2020 and is a one-off cash payment, worth £294.70 or £471.50, from Social Security Scotland that is designed to help with the costs associated with starting work.

The Scottish Government is encouraging people to check whether they are eligible as changes mean that income from trial shifts no longer rules out a young person from receiving the payment, while the deadline for applying has been extended from three months after a job offer to six months and more simplified support information about the job offer is required.

Commenting, SNP MSP for Carrick, Cumnock, and Doon Valley, Elena Whitham, said: “Young people and care leavers across Ayrshire make an invaluable contribution to our community, and I welcome these changes which make it easier for them to access support in seeking employment.

“In the last three years, the Job Start Payment has made a huge difference to the lives of many young people, alleviating the pressure of starting a new job and helping to ease costs that can be extremely prohibitive.

“As cost-of-living pressures persist, the SNP Scottish Government is doing all it can to support those who need it most, showing just what is possible with the full powers of independence.

“The SNP is determined to ensure that people are getting the money that they are entitled to and I strongly encourage those who think they may be eligible to check and apply for this payment.”

More information can be found here.