The UK Government's welfare reform agenda has similar or even greater support in Scotland than in the south of England, according to the head of a housing charity.
People in Scotland should not "delude" themselves into thinking that their general attitude to benefit reforms is different from the rest of the UK, said Shelter Scotland director Graeme Brown.
He was speaking during an End Child Poverty Coalition seminar on Scottish independence in Edinburgh on Thursday morning, which featured a speech by Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
Ms Sturgeon cast doubt on Mr Brown's analysis, saying Welfare Reform Minister Lord Freud "does not represent anyone in Scotland" and suggesting that Chancellor George Osborne would be verbally "lynched" if he appeared before Scottish child poverty campaigners.
Mr Brown said: "We shouldn't delude ourselves. Although we might all disagree with Lord Freud, the reason the Government can continue with its program is because it has public support. The Social Attitudes Survey demonstrates that there is public support and a hardening of attitudes against welfare recipients and a strengthening of the poor law mentality.
"I think we shouldn't also delude ourselves that the attitudes in Scotland in the British Social Attitudes survey show parallel or more intense attitudes compared with London and the South East. So the attitudes towards welfare recipients in Scotland are by and large the same as those that exist outside Scotland."
The most progressive way to tackle poverty in Scotland may be a return to the SNP's "penny for Scotland" policy, according to the head of an urban regeneration body. The SNP ditched its "penny for Scotland" policy in 2002 to refocus its demands for more economic powers, and shelved its local income tax plan in 2009 amid analysis which predicted a shortfall of up to £396 million.
Andy Milne, chief executive of the Scottish Urban Regeneration Forum, said: "Paul Johnson, head of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, has said putting 1p on income tax over the next five years would solve the whole problem in the most progressive way.
"I know the SNP has considered this in the past and I know there are issues around the existing tartan tax which has been in place since 1999, so if there is faith in the Scottish public to make what is necessary and that's the most progressive measure, is that a measure that the SNP would consider advocating?"
Ms Sturgeon refused to predict what income tax would be if the SNP becomes Scotland's first independent government, but suggested that some form of local income tax may still be on the table.