FUNERAL PAYMENT HELPS OVER 400 RENFREWSHIRE FAMILIES
New figures showing the impact of financial help for funeral expenses have been welcomed by a Renfrewshire MP.
The statistics published by the Scottish Government show over 400 families in Renfrewshire have benefited from the Scottish Funeral Support Payment since its introduction in September 2019.
The benefit replaced the DWP’s Funeral Expense Payment when powers over some social security benefits were transferred to Holyrood in 2019.
A total of £22.4 million has gone to families across Scotland who might otherwise not have afforded a dignified funeral for their loved one due to financial circumstances.
In Renfrewshire, Social Security Scotland paid out an average of £1,647 to 435 successful applicants, a total of over £700,000 across the county for expenses over the last two and a half years to help with funeral expenses.
The Funeral Support Payament is a cash payment designed to help towards the cost of a funeral, and covers expenses such as burial or cremation, travel, hearse hire, document and medical costs and funeral director fees and a coffin.
The new figures were welcome by Paisley and Renfrewshire North MP, Gavin Newlands.
“Losing a loved one is an awful experience at the best of times, but when the cost of a funeral could cause severe financial distress it can make a stressful situation even worse.
“The Scottish Funeral Payment is there to help families in financial trouble make sure their relative gets a decent send-off as friends and family pay their final respects.
“While public health measures have meant limits on the numbers attending funerals over recent months – and are now able to accommodate more people saying a final goodbye as restrictions are relaxed – funerals have continued, with all the attendant financial costs for bereaved families.
“Just as we should provide dignity in life, dignity in death should be for everyone as well, and I’m pleased that the Scottish Government has been able to help so many families in Renfrewshire and across Scotland with the financial support that’s available.
“If you need help with the costs of a funeral, visit mygov.scot/funeral-support-payment or call Social Security Scotland on 0800 182 2222 to find out more and submit an application if you think you might qualify.”