A UK Government minister dodged welcoming the Scottish Government's strategy to tackle child poverty in the House of Commons today.

SNP MP Mhairi Black (Paisley and Renfrewshire South), who leads for the party at Scotland Questions in the Commons, asked Quince whether he would welcome the payment scheme.

Instead, Work and Pensions Minister Will Quince said there was "no monopoly on good ideas" when asked if the UK might adopt similar measures as those introduced at Holyrood.

The UK Government will look "very closely" at the Scottish Government's strategy to tackle child poverty, Quince said.

The National:

The Scottish Child Payment scheme is delivered to eligible low-income families, with all payments expected to be made to remaining families by the end of 2022.

Black said: "We already know that children living in poverty experience poor physical and mental health, employment difficulties, stigma and chronic low self-esteem."

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"This creates problems, not just for the individual but for Government further down the line.

"So I wonder if the minister would surprise us all and actually welcome the Scottish Government's introduction of the Scottish Child Payment later this year?"

Quince responded: "I am looking very closely at this measure and its impacts, and I would gently suggest ... that this is in fact evidence of devolution working.

"There is no monopoly on good ideas and where the evidence suggests that a measure works, then we should, of course, explore it and I will.

"And I would just stress that I am committed to working with the Scottish Government to improve the life chances of people across Scotland, as I am across our whole United Kingdom."

Black said: "If this is evidence of devolution working, I would like to remind him [Quince] that this is why we [the SNP] want devolved all of the welfare powers to the Scottish Parliament.

"Once rolled out, this new payment will help roughly around 30,000 children out of poverty.

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"So if this is a good measure for the Scottish Government, can he tell us why his Government is not following suit?"

Quince responded: "I will look at it very closely but what I would say is if the Scottish Government is serious about addressing this issue of child poverty more broadly, then it should be making full use of the powers to reduce housing costs, improve earnings and enhance social security.

"The Scottish Government has powers to tackle poverty through the devolution of skills, education, health and employment programmes and in fact the UK Government does welcome the Scottish Government's child poverty strategy and I indeed look forward to working very closely with my counterpart in the Scottish Government to ensure that we cover these devolved areas."