Scotland politics

MSPs agree self-care packages under new legislation

New laws to provide funds for people needing community care to pay for their own alternative to local authority-run services have been passed by MSPs.

Councils will need to offer people the option of cash to arrange their own private care or to have it allocated to a provider of their choice.

Ministers said people should have more control over their own lives.

The Social Care (Self-directed Support) Bill was passed unanimously at Holyrood.

The legislation aims to give adults and children - including carers - more choice and control over how their needs are met.

Community care services cover people who need assistance because of their age, because they are disabled or physically or mentally ill.

Public Health Minister Michael Matheson said: "It is right to give people more control of their own lives and the support they need to change their lives for the better.

"This bill highlights our commitment to empowering people to live their lives as equal citizens and contribute to and participate in society."