Correspondence between Nicola Sturgeon and Zero Tolerance: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Information requested

Question 1.

All correspondence (including Whatsapp, emails, texts) between Nicola Sturgeon, her office, her special advisers, civil servants and the Zero Tolerance charity over the past year, including about her invite to their anniversary event.

Question 2:

Who invited Nicola Sturgeon to speak at their anniversary event and correspondence surrounding that.


Question 1:

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the costs of locating, retrieving and providing the information requested for your first question would exceed the upper cost limit of £600. The reason for this is that to locate and retrieve that information we would need to conduct a search of all of the records of the Scottish Government. It may help to explain that we file our information according to the subject matter, not by reference to the organisations with whom we have corresponded. Under section 12 of FOISA public authorities are not required to comply with a request for information if the authority estimates the cost of complying would exceed the upper cost limit, which is currently set at £600 by Regulations made under section 12.

You may, however, wish to consider reducing the scope of your question in order that the costs can be brought below £600. For example you could specify the subject matter of the correspondence you are interested in, or restrict your request to a specific business area of the Scottish Government, as this would allow us to limit the searches that would require to be conducted. You may also find it helpful to look at the Scottish Information Commissioner’s ‘Tips for requesting information under FOI and the EIRs’ on his website at:

Question 2: 

Zero Tolerance invited the First Minister to speak at their 30th anniversary event. Please see enclosed the invitation from Zero Tolerance and the response from the Scottish Government accepting the invitation.

In this instance, we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies to that information. The reasons why that exemption applies are explained below.

Reasons for not providing information:

An exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested. This exemption means the personal data which the disclosure of which would contravene data protection principles is redacted. Personal data includes all information that relates to an individual, and includes identifiers such as name, address, and date of birth.

This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

FOI - 202200332895 - Information release


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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