Attendees and apologies
Scottish Government (SG)
- Alastair McAlpine (AMcA), Chief Statistician (Chair)
- Jonathan Wright (JW), Senior Principal Researcher, Equality and Social Justice Analysis
- Jon Hunter (JH), Statistician, Equality Analysis Team
- Maisy Best (MB), Senior Social Researcher, Equality Analysis Team
- Rob Priestley (RP), Directorate for Equality, Inclusion and Human Rights
- Nanjika Nasiiro (NN), Equality, Inclusion and Human Rights Directorate (deputising for Nick Bland)
- David Holmes (DH), Directorate for Chief Economist
- James Chappell, Public Health Scotland (PHS)
- Jordon Gorevan, Non-Departmental Public Bodies Equality Forum (NDPB Equality Forum)
- Emily Lynch, Improvement Service
- John Wilkes, Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
- Duncan Buchanan (DB), Research Data Scotland (attending for agenda item 3)
- Audrey MacDougall, Chief Social Researcher
- Nick Bland, Equality, Inclusion and Human Rights Directorate
- Alan White, NDPB Equality Forum
- Steven Reid, NDPB Equality Forum
- Lesley Crozier, Scottish Council’s Equality Network
- Mark McAllister, COSLA
Items and actions
AMcA welcomed attendees to the meeting and invited introductions.
Following introductions, AMcA invited MB to provide an overview of the Equality Data Improvement Programme Project Board Terms of Reference.
AMcA summarised the agenda for the meeting - to provide a general update on progress; to provide an update on the consultation and plans for stakeholder engagement going forward; and to update on the data linkage project.
AMcA highlighted that minutes from the May meeting, and accompanying papers, have been published on the Equality Data Improvement Programme (EDIP) project board webpage. Paper 1 (Highlight Report) from the cancelled June meeting has also been published.
JH provided an overview of the Highlight Report (Paper 1).
JH advised that responses to the Equality Evidence Strategy 2023 to 2025 consultation, which launched on 1 July, have been lower than anticipated. JH asked Project Board members to promote the consultation within their organisations and networks.
AMcA suggested that the Equality Analysis Team draft an email and speaking note that Project Board members could use to promote the consultation. Attendees agreed that this would be helpful.
AMcA noted the pause to work on the NPF project due to staff redeployment, and suggested JH follow up with AMcA to discuss staffing.
AMcA asked that the Equality Analysis Team provide further detail on the mitigations in place around delayed projects at the next Project Board meeting.
Update on consultation and stakeholder engagement plans
MB presented an overview of the agreed stakeholder engagement approach in the development Equality Evidence Strategy, and an update on the written consultation and planned engagement events.
AMcA suggested that the Equality Analysis Team prepare a letter for circulation to key stakeholder organisations on behalf of the Scottish Government’s Chief Statistician (AMcA) and Chief Social Researcher to encourage their participation in the consultation.
AMcA suggested that Project Board members attend the planned events. Several attendees expressed a keenness to attend.
Attendees discussed the potential for differences in views among event attendees and how constructive discussion could be facilitated, particularly on issues currently subject to some public debate. This included discussion about whether events would be invite-only or open to the public. MB noted that attendees would be required to register to attend the events, including reporting their organisation name in advance, and the registration link would be circulated to a wide range of stakeholders. It is hoped that this will mitigate some of this risk.
AMcA clarified whether events would be held online or in-person and, if the latter, suggested that they be held in Scottish Government buildings. MB advised that the current plan is to run the events online but welcomed views on this plan from Project Board members.
Project Board members are asked to provide written feedback on the planned events via email to MB.
Update on the protected characteristic data linkage project
DB presented an update on the protected characteristic data linkage project, which is led by Research Data Scotland, and next steps.
DB noted that Research Data Scotland would welcome input on public engagement and comms from the EDIP Project Board after the proof of concept is complete.
AMcA advised that the Office of the Chief Statistician can also assist with comms, and welcomed a further meeting with DB.
AOB and close
JW provided an update on EHRC representation on the Project Board going forward.
AMcA thanked all for attending and for their input in the meeting.
- the SG Equality Analysis Team to update the Project Board at the October meeting on mitigations in place around delayed projects
- the SG Equality Analysis Team to circulate a draft email and speaking note to Project Board meeting to be used to promote the written consultation
- Project Board members to promote the written consultation in their organisations and networks to encourage responses
- JH to arrange a meeting with AMcA to discuss staffing
- the SG Equality Analysis Team to draft a letter for circulation to key stakeholder organisations on behalf of the Chief Statistician and Chief Social Researcher to encourage their participation in the consultation
- Project Board members are asked to provide written feedback on the planned stakeholder events via email to MB
- the SG Equality Analysis Team to share dates for events with Project Board members to enable their attendance
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