Fairness at Work process characteristics breakdown: FOI review

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

Information requested

Data on relationships between the age, gender, disability, qualifications held and length of service of both the complaints(s) and/ or respondents(s) and the outcome of the fairness at work complaint.


I note that you were dissatisfied with the response as you wished to determine whether there was any relationship between the above groups and the outcome of the fairness at work complaint.  Having reviewed this I can confirm that I agree with the rationale as outlined in the response dated 8 October 2019, that due to the small numbers (groups of less than 5) and to protect personal data it was correct not to break this down further.  Whilst our aim is to provide information wherever possible, an exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018.

Regarding your point on the table not indicating complainer(s) or the respondent(s) I have concluded that it was not possible to provide a split between these.  As in a number of cases they can in fact be the same individual.  In that, at times a person makes a complaint about an individual and that person then in effect counter complains.  Thus the complainant also becomes a respondent in such cases.  

I note that you were not provided with all grade data on the basis that the figures were less than 5.  Having considered this I do not view this as contravening data protection principles as such please see complete table below:

Grade Headcount 
A3 4
A4 3
B1 4
B2 6
B3 13
C1 10
C2 5
C3 2
NA 6

On the question of qualifications of the complainants and respondents this information is not held and as the Scottish Government is not required to hold this information.  Therefore this information falls within section 17(1) of FOISA (information not held) which requires the Scottish Government to notify you if it does not hold this information.

About FOI
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
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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