Publication - FOI/EIR release

Correspondence with Scottish Trans Alliance and Equality Network from July 2020: FOI release

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

Published:
2 Aug 2021
Correspondence with Scottish Trans Alliance and Equality Network from July 2020: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202100218658
Date received: 29 Jun 2021
Date responded: 29 Jul 2021
Information requested

All correspondence between the Scottish Government and Scottish Trans Alliance/Equality Network regarding the judicial review of the Gender Representation on Public Boards Act pursued by For Women Scotland for the period since 31 July 2020.

Response

Attached is a copy of some of the information requested. 

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 36(1) (confidentiality of communications) and 38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA apply to that information. The reasons why these exemptions apply are explained in the Annex.

ANNEX
REASONS FOR NOT PROVIDING INFORMATION

An exemption applies, subject to the public interest test

An exemption under section 36(1) of FOISA (confidentiality of communications) applies to some of the information you have requested because it is communications in contemplation of, or in connection with litigation and so litigation privilege 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 because we are committed to open and transparent government and to inform public debate. However, this is outweighed by the strong public interest in maintaining the right to confidentiality of communications so that Ministers and officials are able to correspond about contemplated or ongoing litigation in confidence, like any other public or private organisation.

An exemption applies
An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) applies to a small amount of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, i.e. the names and contact details of civil servants in grades below the Senior Civil Service, 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.

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