Improving the lives of Gypsy/Travellers: 2019-2021

Joint action plan by the Scottish Government and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA).


About the Action Plan

Scottish Government and Local Government are working together during 2019-2021
to improve the lives of Scotland’s Gypsy/Traveller communities.

We have spoken to many Gypsy/Travellers and listened to their concerns about accommodation, education, health and access to services. We know that the community face many disadvantages and that action needs to be taken to make sure that Gypsy/Travellers are treated fairly, have positive experiences of our public services and can access all of their rights and entitlements.

We are working with the Gypsy/Traveller community and with organisations who deliver services, to make sure that Gypsy/Travellers:

  • have safe and culturally appropriate places to live and travel
  • understand their rights and have positive experiences of accessing services
  • have support to maximise incomes, increase employment opportunities, and improve the standard of living
  • feel safe, respected and valued members of Scotland’s diverse population
  • have a seat at the table, are listened to, and have a say in decisions that affect their lives.

Our Commitments

To help make this happen, we will work together to:

Provide more and better accommodation

  • Ensure the needs of Gypsy/Travellers are appropriately and collectively resourced
  • Understand the accommodation needs and preferences of Gypsy/Travellers to inform future provision
  • Make sure the planning system works better for Gypsy/Traveller communities

Improve access to public services

  • Work with the community to raise awareness of key rights and entitlements
  • Help to ensure that services are responsive to Gypsy/Travellers’ specific needs and preferences
  • Improve educational outcomes for Gypsy/Travellers by supporting them
    to take advantage of their right to education
  • Test new ways to tackle health inequalities

Better incomes in and out of work

  • Help Gypsy/Travellers maximise their incomes and increase uptake of financial support they are eligible for
  • Support parents to overcome barriers to work, and in-work poverty and
  • Improve standard of living by reducing daily living costs for

Tackle racism and discrimination

  • Provide leadership to challenge racism and discrimination
  • Promote Gypsy/Traveller’s rights
  • Recognise and value Gypsy/Traveller history and culture

Improve Gypsy/Traveller representation

  • Strengthen community development and engagement
  • Make sure Gypsy/Travellers are fairly represented in decisions that are made at national and local level
  • Support a national Gypsy/Traveller ‘movement for change’

The Actions

Our action plan describes some of the key activities we will deliver during 2019-2021 to fulfil these commitments and help to make changes now and lay foundations for lasting change that will see an end to deeply-embedded inequalities.

We will produce more detailed delivery plans which set out who will be responsible for taking each of the actions forward, how they are doing this and when they will have completed it by.

Members of the Ministerial Working Group and COSLA (the organisation that represents Local Government) will meet every six months with members of the Gypsy/Traveller community to monitor and discuss progress and find solutions to any challenges that might arise.



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