Publication - FOI/EIR release

First Minister's full diary between specific dates: FOI release

Published: 22 Feb 2021

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

Published:
22 Feb 2021
First Minister's full diary between specific dates: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202000109458
Date received: 9 Nov 2020
Date responded: 22 Feb 2021
Information requested

"the First Minister’s full diary for the 20 and 21 November 2017. For any meetings that occurred on those days, please provide details and any notes/minutes regarding these meetings as well as any texts/instant messages from the First Minister regarding these meetings."

Response

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have requested.

In relation to the first part of your request for the First Ministers full diary, the Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have asked for because Scottish Government standard records management protocol requires that Ministerial Outlook accounts (incorporating mailbox and calendar) must be maintained at a size (in GBs) which will not impact on functionality. This means that emails
are retained for a maximum of three months, and calendars updated to retain only information required for archive. Ministerial meetings are proactively published on the Scottish Government website;

https://www.gov.scot/collections/ministerial-engagements-travel-and-gifts/

I have included a table below with the meetings published online on the dates you requested for ease of reference;

20/11/2017

Speech

Arctic Forum Scotland

Scottish - Arctic relations

20/11/2017

Overseas Government / Overseas

Minister

Samuli Virtanan, State Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Finland

Scottish - Finnish relations

20/11/2017

Overseas Government / Overseas

Minister

Poul Michelsen, The Faroe Islands Government Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Scottish - Faroese relations

20/11/2017

Overseas Government / Overseas

Minister

Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Iceland

Scottish - Icelandic relations

20/11/2017

Meeting

Professor Anna Dominiczak -

University of Glasgow

Health

21/11/2017

Formal Opening/

Launch

MV Glen Sannox - dual fuel 100 metre ferry

Transport

21/11/2017

Media

Filming of video clip for STV 1

Million Minutes campaign

Combating loneliness in the elderly

community

This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Scottish Government does not have all of the information you have requested.

In relation to the second part of your request, for notes or minutes relating to those meetings, I have attached three documents relating to the meetings with representatives of overseas governments. 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 exemptions under sections S32(1)(a) (substantial prejudice to international relations) and s.38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies to that information.

We are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exemption under sections S32(1)(a) (substantial prejudice to international relations) of FOISA applies. 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. However, this is outweighed by the public interest in ensuring Ministers can have open and frank discussions with representatives of overseas governments.

We are also unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exemption under section 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies. That exemption 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. 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.

In relation to the remainder of your request, while our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested. This is because, having conducted reasonable and proportionate searches we have found no information within the scope of your request.

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.

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG