- 16 Jul 2018
FOI reference: FOI/18/01693, FOI/18/01694, FOI/18/01695
Date received: 19 June 2018
Date responded: 16 July 2018
"Any papers provided from the Disability and Carers Benefits Expert Advisory Group to Scottish Government Ministers or officials. This means that any e-mails, notes, initial or formative advice and communications to Scottish Government Ministers or officials, which have therefore immediately become Scottish Government documents for the purposes of FOI."
You asked for this information for the following dates:
1 September 2017 to 1 January 2018
1 January 2018 to 1 April 2018
1 April 2018 onwards
I enclose a copy of some of the information you requested in the attached PDF file.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exemption(s) under section(s) s.29(1)(a) (policy formulation), s.29 (1)(b) (Ministerial communication) and s.30(b)(i) (free and frank provision of advice) of FOISA applies to that information. The reasons why that exemption(s) applies are explained below.
Reasons for not providing information
An exemption applies, subject to the public interest test.
An exemption under sections s.29(1)(a) (policy formulation), s.29 (1)(b) (Ministerial communication) and s.30(b)(i) (free and frank provision of advice) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested.
These exemptions are subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is a public interest in disclosing information as part of open, transparent and accountable government, and to inform public debate. However, there is a greater public interest in high quality policy and decision-making, and in the properly considered implementation and development of policies and decisions. This means that Ministers and officials need to be able to consider all available options and to debate those rigorously, to fully understand their possible implications.
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House