First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has urged Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson to speak up against Westminster’s ‘rape clause’.
The call came after Ms Davidson backed the change in benefits through a Conservative spokesperson.
The “rape clause” is the name given to the UK governments change in benefits where only two children per household receive tax credits.
Many have claimed that it is unfair that women have to go through a difficult process to prove if they are eligible for benefits if they have a third child through rape.
The spokesperson said: “During consultation on these reforms, the UK Government put in place exemptions to protect women who are faced with very difficult circumstances so they can continue to receive child tax credit for all children in a household.
“We support these exemptions but there is clearly and obligation on the Government, working with third party agencies, to ensure that these cases are dealt with all due care and attention.”
The First Minister tweeted that Ms Davidson must be required to give her own personal view and not through a spokesperson.
SNP MSP Gillian Martin said that denying women of taxi credits unless they prove they have been raped was ‘barbaric’.
She said: “”To deny any woman tax credits for a third or subsequent child unless they can prove they have been raped is barbaric and utterly disgraceful.
“This Tory Government at Westminster has stooped to a new low, even by their standards.
“And in Scotland, Ruth Davidson has gone into hiding 0 leaving a party spokesperson to defend the policy to the hilt while she tries to distance herself from this embarrassment.
“But it’s becoming untenable for Ruth Davidson to keep this up. She needs to give a clear, unequivocal statement on where she and her party stand on this vile policy.”