- 18 Oct 2019
Date received: 20 Sep 2019
Date responded: 17 Oct 2019
You asked for:
1. "Any correspondence between Derek Mackay, Ivan McKee and/or Kate Forbes and civil servants regarding a visit to the Fair Work Convention on 19/09/2019."
2. "Any briefings/memos or other material prepared in advance of Derek Mackay's visit to the Fair Work Convention on 19/09/2019."
3. "Any notes taken, material produced or otherwise whilst at the Fair Work Convention visit on 19/09/2019 or produced afterwards as a result of the visit."
I enclose a copy of most of the information you requested in PDF format. The contents of each of these files is outlined in Annex B.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some the information you have requested because exemptions under sections s17(1) (information not held), s25(1) (information otherwise accessible), s27(1) (information intended for future publication), s30(b)(i) (free and frank provision of advice), s38(1)(b) (information relating to a third party) of FOISA applies to that information. The reasons why that exemption(s) applies are explained in the Annex A to this letter.
Some of the information you have requested is available from https://www.fairworkconvention.scot/aboutthe-convention/.
Reasons for not providing information - Annex A
The Scottish Government does not have the information
Section 17(1) of FOISA (information not held) requires the Scottish Government to notify you if it does not have the information you requested. Regarding some of the information requested in Point 1, no correspondence exists between Mr Ivan McKee and Ms Kate Forbes with civil servants regarding this meeting as they were not in attendance. Therefore, the Scottish Government does not have the information you have asked for because it does not exist.
This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested.
An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested. This is because it contains personal data relating to a third party.
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.
An exemption applies, subject to the public interest test An exemption under sections 27(1) and 30(b)(i) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested. Section 27(1) applies to information intended for future publication while section 30(b)(i) applies to the provision free and frank advice given to Ministers.
This exemption is 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 some public interest in release as part of open, transparent and accountable government, and to inform public debate, and this will be met by our planned publication. In the meantime, there is a greater public interest in taking the time necessary to ensure the information has been properly collated and checked before it is published as planned. Also, we see no public interest in disrupting our programme of work to release the information ahead of the intended publication date.
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 Andrews House