A cash payment for Renfrewshire’s carers has been hailed a success as official figures showed more people than ever are receiving the benefit.

New Scottish Government statistics show Renfrewshire households have received over £4 million in Carer’s Allowance Supplement since the benefit started in 2018.

The supplement gives Carer’s Allowance recipients two extra payments per year of £230.10, a figure due to increase this April.

Combined with an extra coronavirus payment made in June of last year, the supplement resulted in payments in 2020 alone of £1.901 million in Renfrewshire.

2,765 people across the county were eligible for the supplement at the last payment date in October last year, an increase of 7.8% since April 2018 – and local MP Gavin Newlands wants to see that figure increase even more.

Gavin told Renfrewshire News: “These figures show the real difference the Scottish Government’s Carer’s Allowance Supplement is making to households across Renfrewshire.

“With more than £4 million paid out in Renfrewshire since the benefit was rolled out, this is money that would not otherwise be there if the Scottish Parliament didn’t have power over some social security benefits.

“Across Scotland nearly £130 million has been paid out over the last three years, supporting carers at time when they need our help.

“With the additional £230 coronavirus supplement last June, carers last year will have received nearly £700 over the last year.”

He added: “There is no need to apply separately for the supplement – if you receive Carer’s Allowance you should be eligible and get the supplement automatically – so I would encourage anyone who thinks they might qualify to get welfare advice and apply to DWP as soon as possible to benefit from the additional support the Scottish Government are providing.

“Be in no doubt that we owe a debt of gratitude to unpaid carers. We can and we must do much more to assist them, but I am delighted that it’s the Scottish Government leading the way in the UK in supporting our carers to deliver that care to their nearest and dearest.”