Publication - Factsheet

Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund: equality impact assessment results

Published: 15 May 2018
Results of the equality impact assessment for the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund.
Published:
15 May 2018
Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund: equality impact assessment results
Title of Policy Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund
Summary of aims and desired outcomes of Policy The fund will be used to support a broad range of projects and activities that support local community based organisations across Scotland to plan ahead, facilitate dialogue and inform policy development on the impacts of the UK's exit from the EU.
Directorate: Division: team Directorate for External Affairs: European Relations Division; European Policy and Communications Branch

Executive summary

The aim of the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Funds is to support a broad range of projects and activities that support local community based organisations across Scotland to plan ahead, facilitate dialogue and inform policy development on the impacts of the UK's exit from the EU.

This Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) was undertaken to consider the impact of the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund on people and identify opportunities to promote equality.

The EQIA process identified:

  • a lack of data generally for how all equality groups will be affected by Brexit, particularly for the transgender, LGBTI, faith, minority ethnic strands
  • a strong sense that children have been excluded from discussions about Brexit, both in the run-up to the EU referendum and since
  • no negative impacts from the Scottish Government's Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund on any of the protected characteristics
  • significant potential for the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund to provide an opportunity and broad focus to engage Scotland's diverse communities on Brexit issues

The Scottish Government has led the delivery of actions from the EQIA for the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund with support from the Third Sector Unit, and other delivery partners.

The EQIA process did not identify indirect or direct discrimination through the policy intention, design or activity being implemented as part of the Stakeholder Engagement Fund.

The Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund is intended to be inclusive.

Targeting resources, through the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund is expected to have a positive impact on all equality groups.

A number of actions are underway to ensure that the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund does not unlawfully discriminate and promotes stakeholder obligations under the relevant equalities legislation, for example through the fund guidance and grant terms and conditions.

This EQIA analysis will be kept under regular review, with new data and evidence analysed as it becomes available to monitor the on-going impact of the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund on equality groups.

Background

The fund will be used to support a broad range of projects and activities that support local community based organisations across Scotland to plan ahead, facilitate dialogue and inform policy development on the impacts of the UK's exit from the EU. It will focus particularly but not exclusively on enabling community and third sector organisations to listen, think, plan and highlight any concerns about leaving the EU, and provide a platform for them to be heard on the wider national and international stage. The fund supports the Scottish Government's priorities for Brexit, as set out in the Scottish Government White Paper 'Scotland's Place in Europe' and the Scottish Government analysis of the implications for Scotland's Economy 'Scotland's Place in Europe: people, jobs and investment'. This policy contributes to a number of National Outcomes, including We live in a Scotland that is the most attractive place for doing business in Europe; We have strong, resilient and supportive communities where people take responsibility for their own actions and how they affect others; and We have improved the life chances for children, young people and families at risk.

The scope of the EQIA

The EQIA has been delivered with support from the Third Sector Unit and other delivery partners such as SCVO, the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland and Children in Scotland, provided expert advice throughout the development of the fund.

The scope of this EQIA is to consider the impact of the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund on all equality groups.

As the fund targets activity and resources to these groups, with the focus on ensuring a full range of voices can be heard for organisations with all sorts of views.

In order to determine the impact, a desk based review of evidence was undertaken, taking into account a variety of statistical surveys, reports, committee evidence and other publications including:

  • Scotland's Place in Europe
  • Scotland's Place in Europe: people, jobs and investment
  • the Contribution of EEA Citizens to Scotland
  • EU Exit Analysis - Cross Whitehall Briefing
  • making Brexit Work for children: the impact of Brexit on children and young people
  • removing the sharp edges from Brexit: a Scottish third sector perspective
  • impact of leaving the European Union on health and social care in Scotland
  • SULNE position papers on asylum, Charter of Fundamental Rights, consumer rights, criminal justice, data protection, employment, environmental law, equality and discrimination, family law, free movement and human right

Summary

It is considered that the fund will not impact adversely or unfairly on characteristics of age, disability, sex, pregnancy and maternity, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, race, religion or belief, marriage and civil partnership as it is predicated on meeting the needs of all individuals, groups and organisations who apply regardless of these characteristics.

Evidence from Children in Scotland, Young Scot and other children's organisations highlight the need to engage more with children in discussions about Brexit.

There is limited data on how all equality groups will be affected by Brexit, particularly for the transgender, LGBTI, faith, minority ethnic strands and the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund will provide opportunities to highlight these gaps and address them.

In addition, an internal Scottish Government workshop and a number of stakeholder discussions with representatives from relevant organisations including SCVO, The Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland, Children in Scotland and other organisations who participated and listed in the annex to Brexit: Protecting what matters: what's at stake for individuals in the Brexit talks helped to inform this EQIA.

The EQIA process did not identify any indirect, direct or unlawful discrimination arising through the policy intention, design or activity being implemented as part of the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund.

There is significant potential for the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund to provide an opportunity and broad focus to engage Scotland's diverse communities on Brexit issues.

The fund aims to be inclusive and will be used to facilitate constructive dialogue and action planning to ensure communities are able to have a voice in regard to Brexit; help organisations who are themselves thinking about how Brexit affects their own future to plan ahead and prepare; and link together and convene conversations between different communities and organisations who are exploring the consequences of Brexit and facilitate the sharing of information and publication of evidence.

The Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund is intended to be inclusive and the Third Sector Unit team will be involved in the assessment of all applications.

Targeting resources, through the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund, to Scotland's diverse communities, regardless of equality characteristic, is intended to have a positive impact on helping them plan ahead, facilitate dialogue and inform policy development on the impacts of the UK's exit from the EU.

The Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund is also expected to promote good relationships. It encourages Scottish communities and organisations working with them to maintain a clear line of communication with all equality groups who will benefit from the resources or activities under the fund.

The EQIA process for the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund has identified particular opportunities for more general advice for key partners on how to plan ahead, facilitate dialogue and inform policy development on the impacts of the UK's exit from the EU.

Recommendations and conclusion

The EQIA process did not identify indirect or direct discrimination through the policy intention and identified a number of actions being taken to ensure that the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund does not directly or indirectly, unlawfully discriminate.

This EQIA analysis will be kept under regular review, with any new data or evidence analysed as it becomes available to monitor the on-going impact of the Brexit Stakeholder Engagement Fund on equality groups.