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Scottish Government Disability Equality Scheme 2008-11: Annual Report 2009




6.1 The Scottish Government is committed to evidence-based policy making. Ensuring that we develop a good evidence base is key to creating public policies which understand and respond to the needs of disabled people in Scotland.

6.2 As we set out in our scheme (2008-2011), equality impact assessment ( EQIA) is a key mechanism for mainstreaming equalities and ensuring public policies consider and respond to people's different needs. Information and data about disability is vital to support officials to undertake the EQIA process and identify where they may need to adjust individual policies and strategies in order to address disadvantage and achieve greater equality of opportunity between disabled persons and other persons.

6.3 In recognition of this, the Scottish Government made data gathering to develop the information base in relation to disability, a key strand of our work and one of its disability equality scheme priorities.

6.4 This chapter shows the progress we have made on gathering information and making use of information as we set out in our scheme. We report on what we have done to progress gathering and using data, at both Corporate level and for each Analytical Services Division ( ASD) across Government.


Social Inclusion and Equalities Analysis Team(formerly the Social Justice Analytical Unit) based in Communities Analytical Services Division ( CASD)

6.5 The Team continues to provide analytical support to the Scottish Government Equality Unit and support mainstreaming of equalities across the three analytical groups - statisticians, social researchers and economists. The Team has been responsible for working alongside the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to develop an Equalities Measurement Framework 1, as recommended by the 2007 UK Equalities Review 2, and for progressing other recommendations made as part of the Office for National Statistics ( ONS) led Equalities Data Review.

6.6 The Team is responsible for co-ordinating work to develop and promote the consistent use of official disability classifications across the 2011 Scottish Census, all Scottish Government statistical surveys and administrative data collections. This programme of work is being taken forward in conjunction with the Office for Disability Issues ( ODI) and it is hoped that a finalised question and guidance will be issued during 2010.

6.7 The Team also continues to have an integral role helping analysts to build the capacity of their ASDs to provide sound equalities evidence and analysis which will inform and support policy. In so doing, the Team will continue to support equalities mainstreaming across analytical groups to help ensure that good evidence and analysis is built into EQIA processes and public duty schemes and annual reporting.

Indicators and Outcomes

6.8 The Scottish Government's performance framework was published on 14 November 2007 following the Scottish Government Spending Review. The National Performance Framework ( NPF) sets out a series of high level indicators, outcomes and related targets against which the current Administration will monitor its performance.

6.9 The Social Inclusion and Equalities Analysis Team will continue to work with ASDs to ensure that the equality dimensions of these indicators, outcomes and targets are developed, monitored and delivered in an evidence based way. The Team will also continue to work with other strategic partners outwith the Scottish Government, especially the EHRC and to ensure the necessary linkage between the equality dimensions of the NPF, the new Equality Measurement Framework and other social policy frameworks used by these bodies.

Equality Analysts Network

6.10 This group (formerly the Equality Analysts Working Group) was first established in 2006 to address more specific issues around equality definitions, data collection and use of evidence/data. The group membership and remit has been under review to take account of the change in Government in May 2007 and to support ongoing mainstreaming work.

6.11 The Social Inclusion and Equalities Analysis Team re-launched the Network in 2009 and IT will be further developed over the coming year with the aim of developing capacity and awareness of equality issues across the Scottish Government. Its members will be drawn from across the Scottish Government's ASDs and will be balanced in terms of the three professional analyst groups - social researchers, statisticians and economists.

6.12 The purpose of the group will be to provide cross-government input into the development of a strategic equalities data and evidence plan and to provide practical support and advice on mainstreaming equalities across analyst professions by:-

  • Developing equality briefing packs for specific policy areas.
  • Improving analytical support to EQIAs.
  • Supporting ASDs to assist their Directorates to gather information to inform their business plans.
  • Co-ordinating ASD input to future revisions of public duty schemes and annual reporting.
  • Considering better ways of ensuring that equality data are accessible and available to policy at the right time for example through updated publications and website dissemination; and
  • Looking at options for improving the consistency of data collected across research and surveys.

There will be a specific focus on disability questions and the disability duties as well as equalities issues more broadly.


6.13 Over the coming year the Social Inclusion and Equalities Analysis Team will be carrying out a project to develop a medium to long-term strategy for equalities data and evidence. This work will focus on identifying the key gaps in equalities evidence and prioritising work to start filling these gaps. As part of this work we will consider what information we currently collect, how that can be improved or used better and considering whether this information meets the needs of data users. We will be explicitly examining the kinds of information collected on the needs, views and experiences of disabled people.


6.14 In addition to the programme of work to develop a medium to long-term equalities evidence/data plan, we will be reviewing the PRIME website, the equalities sections of the Scottish Government Statistical web pages and the statistical publications which are produced on equalities issues. This review will take into account the views of other Analysts working across the Scottish Government as well as the needs of data providers and users.

Disability Definitions

6.15 Work is continuing to develop a better and more consistent approach to collecting data on disabled people. The Scottish Government has long recognised the importance of taking a social approach to understanding disability. For example, a literature review on Communication Support Needs ( CSN) 3, published in June 2007, was based on the social model of disability, and looked at the needs and experiences of people with CSN and the barriers they face when accessing services.

6.16 We have continued discussions with Scottish Government analysts and analysts across other Government Departments about the categories we use to collect data on disability and are working to improve the data we collect. In addition, we have worked with the General Registrars Office for Scotland to promote the use of the Disability Discrimination Act definition in Scottish Census disability categories for the 2011 Scottish Census. A suite of questions is still under development and are being tested, but it is likely that this suite will include questions which ask about the nature and severity of a disability as well as some questions which adopt a social barrier approach. Once these questions have been agreed, analysts and policy-makers will benefit from consistent disability definitions being used in surveys and administrative data collection and it will ensure that all data are comparable when they are used in policy impact assessment and evaluation.

The Harmonisation Work Programme

6.17 The major cross-sectional Scottish surveys all published their most recent results in Autumn 2009 and OCS and the Social Inclusion and Equalities Analysis Team are working together to analyse the equalities variables contained within them. This work will consider the variability of equalities estimates within and between the surveys in order to assess the harmonisation process to date and some experimental analysis will be done on combining survey samples. This will not address disability statistics directly as there is currently no agreed harmonised question for disability, but the methodological developments made will be useable with the disability data once available. Work is also progressing on other aspects of the Long-Term Survey Strategy that are prerequisites to combining survey samples, such as investigating the effects of clustering on the precision of estimates, a procurement review and data management issues.


Building Equalities into our Processes

6.18 The Office of the Chief Researcher ( OCR) continues to work to ensure that all the equality duties, including disability equality, are firmly embedded within social research practice to ensure that Scottish Government social research provides an evidence base of the highest quality, inclusive of all groups in our society.

6.19 A new version of the 'Guidance for Commissioning and Managing Social Science Research' was published in March 2009 which includes a new section on mainstreaming equalities issues, including disability, as well as other references throughout to meet compliance with the duties. Further work will be undertaken during 2010 to develop intranet pages/click through guidance on considering equalities issues including disability when procuring research.

6.20 The Scottish Government database of social science research projects continues to collect information on whether equalities issues have been considered in the procurement of social research that supports and informs policy development to ensure that the needs of disabled people, and other equality groups are fully taken into account.

6.21 Undertaking such reviews of our guidance to improve the way we work will help us to improve and increase the availability, accessibility and quality of equality research and data. In the context of the disability duty, this will assist us to ensure that our policies properly reflect the needs, experiences and views of disabled people.

Database of Statistical Outputs and Sources

6.22 The Office of the Chief Statistician ( OCS) rolled out an internal database to all ASDs in 2008 but has not been made more widely available due to concerns about the quality of inputs. We are currently reviewing the purpose, scope and functionality of the database in light of the UK Statistics Authority's assessment process and feedback on the usability of the database. The future of equalities information in the database is dependent on the outcome of this review.

Attitudinal Data

6.23 It will also be important to continue to collect data which will inform the promotion of more positive attitudes towards disability. The Scottish Government commissioned a module in the 2002 and 2006 Scottish Social Attitudes Surveys to explore attitudes to discrimination in Scotland, the results of which were published in 2003 4 and 2007 5 respectively. This survey explored attitudes towards people with learning disabilities and towards positive action for disabled people applying for jobs. This survey module provided us with important information on people's perceptions of disability and the extent to which respondents knew people with physical or learning disabilities.

6.24 The Scottish Government is commissioning a further module in the 2010 Scottish Social Attitudes Survey to explore attitudes to discrimination, and is currently working with the Equality and Human Rights Commission ( EHRC) to develop the questions for this module. This will give us a significant amount of trend data, and the Social Inclusion and Equalities Analysis Team will continue to work with the EHRC to consider the implications of the findings.

6.25 We highlighted that, where necessary and if required to improve our evidence base around particular disability equality issues, we would explore the use of different methods. For example, using qualitative research to gain a better understanding of issues highlighted by statistical data or developing specific issue-focused surveys to provide supplementary quantitative information to the larger national surveys. We currently do not have examples in regards to disability equality.

Scottish Household Survey ( SHS)

6.26 We reported that a review of the new discrimination question was undertaken throughout 2008. There are now two questions included in the SHS as follows:

  • In the last 3 years have you experienced any kind of verbal or physical harassment, bullying or violence in Scotland?
  • If "Yes", (on the most recent occasion) why do you think that happened?

6.27 The discrimination questions are asked on a _ sample though this would generated about 11,000 household responses. Results for 2007/2008 showed that in Scotland, 17% of adults experienced any kind of harassment, bullying or violence. Of these, one per cent of adults felt this happened due to their disability.

6.28 In addition, the Scottish House Condition Survey collects detailed information about disability and access to the home and within the home and the physical part of the survey includes observations on whether the home is barrier free. This year, in readiness for 2010, the physical questionnaire has been revamped to bring together the barrier free questions within the form and to make the surveyors more aware of the purpose of this set of questions.


6.29 Our scheme highlighted that actions to develop the evidence base would be needed across individual ASDs and that this would be supported by a dedicated equalities research team within Communities Analytical Services. This next section provides a report on progress of ASD actions as set out in the 2008-2011 scheme.

Education and Analytical Services ( EAS) and Lifelong Learning Analytical Services Unit

Data Collections

6.30 In the scheme EAS highlighted that they continue to undertake the collection of high quality data to support education and children's services in order to provide robust data, that is fit for the purpose of analytical products across their Division, and forms part of the evidence base policy requires.

Pupils who have a Disability,

6.31 The Scottish Government has been working with Education Authorities ( EAs) and the Equality and Human Rights Commission to reach agreement on the collection of more detailed and robust information centrally on pupils with disabilities. The aim is for a consistent set of categories to be developed that will help EAs meet their requirements under the Disability Equality Duty where they are under a duty to report on the opportunities and achievements of disabled pupils. Currently, there is basically a Y/N tick box - pupil is declared and/or assessed disabled. Does pupil have access to: physical adaptation/curriculum adaptation/communication adaptation - Y/N tick box. It is also possible for a return of 'not disclosed/declared' to be returned.

6.32 The categories will be along the lines of those currently used in the pupil census - 'Reasons for support for pupils with ASN'. They will focus on why the pupils are getting support. This will provide much more detail than currently held. The Y/N tick boxes above will still be maintained.

6.33 This data should be captured in the September 2010 school pupil census 6 and the improved outcomes expected are:

  • Some local authorities already have sophisticated data bases and the above actions will ensure more consistent and robust data on pupils with ASN and disabilities at a central level whilst still allowing local developments to meet local needs; and
  • Stronger, firmer data will help authorities and schools plan more strategically to meet pupils' needs with dyslexia in training and provision.

6.34 EAS report that representatives from EAS are working with National Healthy Schools Standards ( NHSS) colleagues and a wide range of stakeholders to develop a suite of indicators of mental health/wellbeing of children and young people in Scotland. The two year project aims to produce robust national indicators that can be used to measure prevalence and trends across a range of mental health conditions/disabilities. The project is intended to inform policy and practice in health, social work and education.

6.35 In the scheme EAS also reported that they collect disability (self-assessed) information regarding attendance at Higher Education ( HE) and Further Education and entitlement to students allowance at HE. Here, EAS report that information on disability is used by the Scottish Funding Council ( SFC) in relation to the allocation of disabled students' allowance.

6.36 Scotland's representative on the Governing Board of OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment ( PISA) has successfully pushed for an inclusive approach to pupil participation in the survey

Working with Policy Colleagues

6.37 Lifelong Learning report that Skills Development Scotland, the agency responsible for the delivery of our National Training Programmes, collects and analyses information on those participating in its programmes and using its careers service including their disability status.

6.38 In addition, the Scottish Employability Forum, a national group of stakeholders, is working on enhancing data collection and utilisation to ensure that we consider the immediate and longer term impact of the recession on particularly vulnerable groups such as disabled people.

6.39 Further, the Units forthcoming review of Workforce Plus will help to ascertain how well local partnerships are using information on particular groups to ensure that services are suitable for all.

Local Government and Public Service Reform ( LGPSR)


6.40 LGPSR report on using Scottish Household Survey ( SHS) data on local government and public services and on the Candidate Survey and Elected Members Surveys. SHS data has been analysed by disability as follows, the 2007-08 data SHS Annual Report (published August 2009) provides analysis on 'use of the Internet' by disability - 62% of people with a disability did not use the Internet compared with 25% of people with no disability 7.

6.41 The 2007-08 SHS Annual Report data, published August 2009 provides analysis on whether respondents provided unpaid help to organisations or individuals in the last 12 months by current economic situation including whether the respondent was permanently sick or disabled. Seventeen per cent of respondents who were permanently sick or disabled compared to 30% of respondent who were not provided voluntary help to organisations/individuals 8.

6.42 On the Candidate and Elected Members Survey, a report was published on the findings of the 2007 National Survey of Local Government Candidates 9. This report provides analysis and discusses the percentages of successful and unsuccessful candidates who had a long-term health problem, illness or disability. Twenty-five per cent of unsuccessful candidates had a health problem, illness or disability compared with 18% of successful candidates. Fourteen per cent of unsuccessful candidates said this health problem, disability or illness limited their activities in some way compared with only 6% of successful candidates.

Culture, External Affairs and Tourism ( CEAT)

ArtFull Programme

6.43 CEAT (Culture) was part of a group overseeing this programme on arts and mental health, funded by the Scottish Government and managed by the Scottish Arts Council. The programme involved different arts and cultural projects that seek to improve the lives and well-being of participants who have mental health problems.

6.44 The Evaluation 10 found that ArtFull had increased access to and participation in the arts, particularly for people experiencing mental health problems but also for members of the wider community, although to a lesser extent. Partnership working was a vehicle for delivering most of the projects, and some projects were more successful than others in influencing the way partners work or might work in the future. ArtFull was found to support the development of quality artistic practice amongst exemplar projects by both artists and participants, and both reported opportunities to develop their artistic practice through ArtFull. However, the Evaluation also found that, although the projects were asked to self-evaluate the outcomes of their own projects, this was limited, and only in some cases had the impact on participants been effectively measured.

6.45 The legacy of ArtFull is that there is an increased awareness of and support for the arts as a means of addressing mental health and wellbeing amongst project stakeholders and policy-makers; that new and mutually beneficial partnerships have been created as a result of the initiative; and that project participants have reported enhanced mental health and wellbeing; improved aural, verbal and written communication skills; increased self-confidence; enhanced sense of self-worth; increased access to the arts and understanding of artistic practices; increased access to opportunities to develop artistic practice; reduced levels of stress and anxiety; improved social and life skills; and improved employability skills.

6.46 Following the initiative, a strategic Steering Group on Arts and Health has been set up and is managed by the Scottish Arts Council ( SAC). Members of the Steering Group comprise artists, health officials, Scottish Government and SAC colleagues. The Steering Group will oversee two projects focusing on arts and health - one on GP referrals to arts activities, and the other on the training of medical students on the benefits of arts and cultural activities in healthcare settings.

Scottish Household Survey ( SHS) Culture and Sport Module

6.47 This Module provides new and unprecedented data on levels and extent of participation in culture and allows the Scottish Government to gain an insight into the barriers to participation. Data is disaggregated to disability data, and informs on level of participation of disabled people and barriers to participation). The main SHS report establishes the participation and attendance rate of people who suffer from a long standing health condition or disability, and results will be available shortly on this level of participation at local authority area. This is welcomed by all local authorities in Scotland, and is the first such information available to them on this particular issue.

6.48 Findings from the SHS Culture Module report (2008) 11 indicate that people with a longstanding illness or disability were less likely than others to participate in cultural activities, and, with a few exceptions, the findings were similar for cultural attendance. One of the main reasons provided by respondents for NOT participating in or attending cultural events, was that their health was not good enough (13% and 20% respectively).

6.49 The main SHS report (2009) 12 found that the cultural participation rate for those with a disability was 63%, for those with an illness/health problem was 67%, and for those with both 60%, compared to 75% participation rate for those who had no disability or health problem. There was an even starker difference for cultural attendance rates - those with a disability had a 57% attendance rate, those with a health problem 62%, and those with both 48%, compared to an 81% cultural attendance rate for those who had no disability or health problem.

Transport Analytical Services Unit ( ASU)

Survey Harmonisation

6.50 In connection with recent and ongoing work being undertaken by OCS on harmonisation of the core questions across all Scottish Government surveys, Transport ASU will continue to ensure that any further transport surveys will be collated in the same manner, allowing the resulting analysis to be analysed by disability. This will ensure that travel statistics can be analysed by disability in a consistent manner.

Bus Information Survey

6.51 The proposal for a survey of bus passengers, mentioned in the Disability Equality Scheme Progress Report 2008, was not undertaken, because information on bus passengers was already available from the SHS. Rather than a survey, qualitative research was commissioned on bus perceptions. The statistical publication Bus and Coach Statistics 2007-08 13, published in 2009, includes a number of tables with information on bus use, opinions on buses and concessionary travel passes, which disaggregate by people who report themselves as being permanently sick or disabled.

Bus Perceptions Research

6.52 In 2009 Transport ASU commissioned qualitative research on perceptions of buses amongst those who do not use them often or at all. The research involved people with disabilities as a specific group of interest, as it was recognised they face particular disadvantage in terms of bus travel. In-depth interviews with twelve people, who had mobility issues or learning disabilities, were undertaken as part of the research. The research findings are due to be published in early 2010 and the information will be used to inform bus policy and service delivery.

Evaluation of the National Concessionary Travel Scheme

6.53 The Evaluation of National Concessionary Travel in Scotland was published in 2009 14. The study found that by April 2008, 164,266 national concessionary travel cards had been issued on the grounds of disability in Scotland, but that take-up varies across local authorities. The Scotland-wide scheme is popular amongst older and disabled card users. The majority of those who were surveyed (85%) agreed to a greater or lesser extent that the national scheme has made it easier for them to get to services such as shopping and health and leisure centres. Similarly, most (76%) agreed that the scheme has made it easier for them to visit friends and family. However, only a minority had actually used the scheme to travel by bus outwith their local area for these purposes.

Review of Transport Scotland Website

6.54 In 2008 Transport ASU commissioned research on behalf of Transport Scotland to review the content, design, navigation and structure of their website and to test that it met accessibility standards. The study included qualitative research with disabled people and a desk-based accessibility audit of a sample of web-pages. The research identified a number of usability and accessibility problems, which impacted on the ease with which users could locate information and which prevented it from meeting recognised accessibility standards that Government websites are required to meet. The findings from the research have been used to make improvements to the Transport Scotland website and to inform its future development.

Equality Impact Assessments ( EQIAs)

6.55 Transport ASU are currently assisting with the completion of a number of transport equality impact assessments, including in relation to road safety, active and sustainable travel and ferries policy.

Communities Analytical Services Division ( CASD)

Discrimination Module

6.56 The discrimination module of the Scottish Social Attitudes Survey includes data on attitudes towards disabled people and is a valuable resource for policy-makers in the Scottish Government, the Equality and Human Rights Commission ( EHRC) and equalities stakeholders in Scotland. The results of the 2006 survey were published in December 2007 and the Scottish Government are currently working with the EHRC to develop questions for the attitudes to discrimination module in the 2010 Scottish Social Attitudes Survey. The Scottish Government will continue to work with the EHRC in consideration of the findings.

User Event

6.57 We held a user event in 2009 to consult with key groups to feed into the collection of equality data. The results of this consultation fed into the development of the final questions to be asked in the 2011 Census in Scotland. We will be consulting further on the range of questions on disability which should be asked in social surveys.

Disability Mapping

6.58 Research to map the disability sector in Scotland was commissioned in March 2008 and three reports from this study will be published in December 2009. To increase understanding of the capacity of disabled organisations to engage with public authorities, this study explored how best to ensure that disabled people and disability organisations are involved in Scottish Government and wider public sector policy processes and assessed the extent of representation available to disabled people. The Advisory Group for this work included external representatives from disability organisations.

Supporting People

6.59 An evaluation into the Supporting People (Housing Support) Outcomes Framework was piloted across 7 local authorities in 2007. The aim of the Framework was to assess what concrete outcomes and improvements are achieved for disabled people and other client groups, including entry to employment and moving into permanent accommodation. Most local authorities reported that the data from the Framework added value as there was evidence collected in the Framework which was not available elsewhere. One of the main benefits was the picture it provided of the 'distance travelled' for individual clients. The Framework has been further developed by the Housing Support Enabling Unit in 2009/10 taking account of the recommendations and has been extended to consider 'meaningful activity' which goes beyond employment and training to consider volunteering and learning activity. A version of the Framework is being created for people with learning disabilities and an IT tool is being developed to support the recording of individual's support needs and use of support. A web based tool which will be able to collate information about outcomes and produce reports for commissioners of services and for service providers is also currently being developed.

Independent Living

6.60 In August 2008, a new long-term approach to help improve the daily lives of disabled people, backed by £600,000 from the Scottish Government, was announced. The Government and public sector bodies will work together to identify ways to break down the barriers which stop disabled people fulfilling their full potential in areas such as housing, transport, employment and education. An expert group, The Scottish Government Core Reference Group, which includes disabled people, has begun meeting to help shape the way forward. Communities Analytical Services are currently developing a plan to provide analytical support to Independent Living work.

Evaluation of Ownership Options' Pilot

6.61 An 'Evaluation of Ownership Options' Pilot Service on disability issues for registered Landlords taking part in Scottish Government funded shared equity provision was published by the Scottish Government in April 2009. The research highlighted that the service had some achievements in meeting its aim and objectives, including: promoting and providing the service; raising awareness and knowledge of disability issues and shared equity with some Registered Social Landlords ( RSLs); developing practice within some RSLs including skills, confidence, and capacity; and enabling the use of shared equity by a small number of disabled people. In response to the findings and recommendations of the research, the Scottish Government is exploring options to produce best practice guidance on shared equity for disabled people for Registered Social Landlords participating in both the New Supply Shared Equity and Open Market Shared Equity.

Poverty and Equality

6.62 Communities ASD also provides support to the Social Inclusion Division. The income and poverty statistics team publish annual figures on poverty levels for disabled people and during 2009 analytical work was undertaken to explore the links between poverty and disability. This work is still at an early stage but we hope to continue with it during 2010 to gain a better understanding not only of the effect of disability on the income of families, especially those with children, but also an understanding of the differences between different types of disability/impairment and the links to poverty.

Rural and Environment Analytical Services ( REAS)

Consultation and Engagement Work

6.63 REAS analysts routinely advise and manage research contracts relating to consultation and engagement work across the portfolio, and explore options for engaging 'harder to reach' equalities groups within each policy area. At times, this involves ensuring equalities coverage via consultation questions, for example, on the Climate Change Adaptation Framework consultation and analysis of responses to these questions.

6.64 REAS undertake scoping of Rural, Environment and Greener evidence requirements for equalities, including disabilities in each business planning year. This allows REAS to map the key policy areas, issues and questions that require evidence and data.


6.65 REAS assists policy colleagues in completing EQIAs for key policy and legislative developments, for example the Scottish Climate Change Bill). We are aware that the evidence base from which policy colleagues complete EQIAs requires further development, and we are seeking to assess priorities across the portfolio for new evidence needs.


6.66 The Scottish Environmental Attitudes and Behaviours Survey 2008 ( SEABS'08) gathered EM and disabilities data (through questions agreed by the Statistics Harmonisation Working Group) and has generated new data for key environmental issues. The Scottish Household Survey contains data which is key to portfolio interests and REAS is able to draw equalities/disabilities data from this, as required.

Commitment to Improving the Evidence-Base

6.67 REAS is leading on a programme of work on climate-related behaviour change. As part of this, we will be collecting equalities data from a range of sources. This includes the Climate Challenge Fund, a major programme of local community-led carbon reduction initiatives. We intend to collect data from a range of projects and will pull out equalities/disability issues where feasible. We will also be looking at whether there are particular barriers faced by equalities groups, including disabled people in taking up pro-environmental behaviours.

6.68 REAS worked closely with social research colleagues in Communities ASD to commission and manage a qualitative study to investigate what is distinctive about the experience of poverty in rural Scotland. The research, which was published in March 2009 15, sought the views of organisations supporting/campaigning on behalf of people in key vulnerable groups, including those with disabilities.

Justice Analytical Services

Scottish Crime and Justice Survey

6.69 Justice report that "The Scottish Crime and Justice Survey" collects data on gender, ethnicity, age, religion and sexual orientation of victims and whether they have a disability. The report 'Scottish Crime and Justice Survey 08/09 First Findings' was published on 27 October 2009 and has analysis throughout by gender and age 16.

6.70 The First Findings report did not contain specific analyses of the crime and justice issues affecting disabled people however, this data is available for analysis.

Health Analytical Services

Scottish Health Survey

6.71 The disability questions were revised from 2008 onwards to better reflect the definition of disability in the DDA. The 2008 report, which was published in September 2009 17, contains tables on the prevalence of long-term conditions, the number of long-term conditions and a breakdown of the different types of long-term conditions reported by respondents. The report provides an age-sex breakdown for each of these, but with the data available it is possible to cross tabulate disability against other health behaviours and socio-economic characteristics.

NHS Resource Allocation Formula

6.72 The revised resource allocation formula proposed by the NHSScotland Resource Allocation Committee ( NRAC) was implemented in 2009/10. It includes the costs of providing health services to disabled people and specifically recognises the effects of disability on the health needs of the population. It uses the Limiting Long-Term Illness ( LLTI) rate to help establish the additional health needs for acute services, care of elderly and GP prescribing. The index for the Mental Health and Learning Difficulties care programme is adjusted to reflect the percentage of people claiming severe disability allowance.

6.73 NRAC also recommended that issues of equality and diversity are considered in any future review of the Formula, ascertaining whether robust evidence is available and consulting on proposed recommendations with equality groups. A new group the Technical Advisory Group on Resource Allocation ( TAGRA) has taken on the task of maintaining and developing the formula, including ensuring that NRAC's recommendations are taken forward.

Statistics Review

6.74 Equally Well, the report of the Ministerial Task Force on Health Inequalities 18, made two recommendations focused specifically on improving data on inequalities, as follows:-

  • The Government should commission a review of health data needs which covers gender, ethnicity, age, disability, religion and belief, sexual orientation and transgender. The review should be published and include a plan of action with milestones to fill information gaps identified and led by NHS Health Scotland.
  • NHS targets should be set to support work on patient monitoring and collection of equalities data, led by the Equality and Diversity Information Programme ( EDIP) at NHS National Services for Scotland (led by Information Services Division ( ISD)).

6.75 Although work on the recommendations is lead separately, NHS Health Scotland and ISD are working together on both recommendations and both areas of work to report to the Equally Well 74 & 75 Project Group.

6.76 Engagement to identify user data needs and issues around the collection of equalities data is now well under way. Progress to date includes:

  • Equality Groups: Meetings have taken place with key Scottish equality organisations including: Men's Health Forum, Engender, Stonewall, Equality Network, BEMIS, Scottish Disability Equality Forum. Further meetings are planned with Scottish Inter Faith Council, CEMVO, REACH and Age Concern.
  • NHS Boards: Equality Leads in all NHS Boards have been alerted them to the review work and meetings have taken place with two NHS area boards with, a further six meetings scheduled.
  • Primary Care: An application has been submitted to Scottish Clinical Information Management in Practice ( SCIMP) for their input to assessing the clinical and practical use of equalities data in primary care and the technical issues associated with collecting, storing and sharing data of this nature.
  • Other data users: Meetings have been held with Scot PHN and Glasgow Centre for Population Health ( GCPH) and a flyer was issued at Public Health Information Network for Scotland ( PHINS) conference to alert potential data users to the review and invite them to feed into this work.

6.77 An audit of the equalities data collected through existing data sources is underway. The audit is underway within ISD and contact has been made with Health Protection Scotland regarding the audit of its data sources.

6.78 An audit to identify the Patient Management Systems currently being used within acute care settings is underway. This will identify which current IT systems can, or have the potential to hold equalities data.

6.79 NHS Health Scotland and ISD have held early discussions around potential milestones for data collection and related targets.

Community Care Data Collection

6.80 Health ASD is moving the home care statistics data collection from an aggregate return to an individual return. Multiple client group categories, for example learning disabilities, physical disabilities in this new return can be selected with the data collection starting from March 2010. In the following years Health ASD will be looking to do longitudinal analysis. Evidence will be used to monitor community care policies such as 'Shifting the balance of care' and 'Reshaping care'.

6.81 The Self-Directed Support return is also going to be collected in the same format as home care. Data will relate to 2009-10 and multiple client group categories can be selected.


6.82 The equalities impact assessment is now flagged up in the Pre-Expenditure Delivery Assessment ( PEDA) template and will therefore be registered for completion for all such assessments. In addition, the equalities impact assessment has been flagged in the proposed new Scottish Impact Assessment which is currently under consideration. This ensures that the consideration of equality for disabled people is presented as an integral part of the development of the evidence base for policy formulation.