Responding to the new report from Audit Scotland highlighting that Social Security Scotland still needs to take on more than 50% of devolved benefits, social security spokesperson Caron Lindsay said:
“It's now almost eight years since the Smith Commission recommended the devolution of welfare powers to Scotland and it will still not be complete until 2025.
“These powers represent a major opportunity for Scotland to do things differently but because of the time taken by the Scottish Government, disability benefits are rising at a lower rate and many powers remain in the hands of the DWP. There are also questions over value for money and how promises will be paid for going forward.
“This delay is not consequence free. Vulnerable people were struggling with living costs even before the huge jump in inflation. They can't afford to wait years for the SNP to help them.
“This Government said that they could set up the entire apparatus of an independent Scotland in 18 months. Nobody can believe that when the SNP won't even use the powers it has now to relieve the stress for those with the lowest incomes.
“Scottish Liberal Democrats want to see rapid action to use these powers to the max to help people in Scotland cope with the cost-of-living emergency."