Process and policy of Disclosure Scotland: FOI release

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

Information requested

Guidance/process and policy Disclosure Scotland use to consider a person for listing for regulated work.

You also requested the following: "In the five years how many people have appealed a decision to list a person for regulated work and the outcome - upheld or overturned Disclosure Scotland."


With regard to the first part of your request, some of the information we hold that is within the scope of your request is already available in the public domain. To assist you, we have included links to the information published on our website. If you require further assistance to access this information please let us know and we can send a copy.

We enclose the following information:

  1. Protection of Vulnerable Groups – consideration for listing – guidance for individuals.
  2. Protection of Vulnerable Groups – consideration for listing – employer guidance.

While our aim is to provide information wherever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because an exemption under section 30(C) (prejudice to the effective conduct of public affairs) of the FOISA applies to that information.

Disclosure Scotland’s duty to consider and decide whether a person is unsuitable to do regulated work with children and/or protected adults is a public protection measure, designed to protect the most vulnerable people in society from harm. Unrestricted access to information about how Disclosure Scotland assesses and makes decisions would likely result in substantial prejudice by compromising the integrity and reliability of the process and Disclosure Scotland’s ability to ensure it makes effective safeguarding decisions. Consequently, Disclosure Scotland’s effectiveness in protecting vulnerable group would be compromised, undermining the public’s trust and confidence in the Protection of Vulnerable Groups Scheme.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest’ test. We also consider that the public interest in disclosing the information is not outweighed by the public interest in applying the exemption. The public interest lies in Disclosure Scotland being able to perform its functions fully and effectively, particularly where these contribute substantially to the protection of public safety. There is no public interest in disclosing information, which would have major implications for the protection of the public, in particular the most vulnerable people in society. It is in the public interest that they, vulnerable people who receive services in in a regulated work context, and organisations that deploy people to deliver such services, have the utmost trust and confidence that Disclosure Scotland has carried out an effective appraisal of risk and that vulnerable people are not being placed at risk of harm.

With regard to the second part of your request, in the past 5 years (taken from 16/09/2017) there have been 35 appeals lodged by individuals. Of these 35 appeals against Disclosure Scotland’s decisions:

  • 3 appeals were upheld;
  • 14 appeals were refused; and

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

FOI 202200320767 - Information released


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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