Local development plans – defining Gypsies and Travellers: interim impact assessments

Integrated interim impact assessments on a proposed definition of ‘Gypsies and Travellers’ for the purpose of local development plan regulations on evidence reports.


This consultation seeks views on a definition of 'Gypsies and Travellers' for the specific purposes of section 16B of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act, 1997, as amended by the Planning (Scotland) Act, 2019. In preparing the consultation, consideration has been given to the impacts of the proposals. The following assessments are covered in this Integrated Impact Assessment.

  • Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment
  • Equalities Impact Assessment, covering human rights
  • Childs Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment
  • Island Communities Impact Assessment
  • Fairer Scotland Duty
  • Strategic Environmental Assessment

A public consultation was carried out between 17 December 2021 and 31 March 2022 on proposed new regulations and draft guidance for Local Development Plans. That consultation outlined that the Planning (Scotland) Act, 2019, provides for a meaning of 'Gypsies and Travellers' to be specified in regulations. The consultation proposed to hold a separate consultation to enable targeted involvement of the Gypsy/Traveller community and for the explanation of the specific matters associated with the requirement to be set out.

Interim Impact Assessments were carried out for the above consultation. This Integrated Impact Assessment includes the relevant elements of those assessments and additional material specific to the content of this consultation.

What are the Impact Assessments

What is a Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment?

A Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment (BRIA) looks at the likely costs, benefits and risks of any proposed primary or secondary legislation. It also covers voluntary regulation, codes of practice, guidance, or policy changes that may have an impact on the public, private or third sector.

The BRIA explains:

  • the reason why the Scottish Government is proposing to intervene;
  • options the Scottish Government is considering, and which one is preferred;
  • how and to what extent new policies may impact on Scottish Government, business and on Scotland's competitiveness;
  • the estimated costs and benefits of proposed measures.

What is an Equalities Impact Assessment?

The public sector equality duty requires the Scottish Government to assess the impact of applying proposed new legislation. Equality legislation covers the characteristics of: age, disability, gender reassignment, sex including pregnancy and maternity, race, religion and belief, and sexual orientation.

An Equalities Impact Assessment (EQIA) aims to consider how a policy may impact, either positively or negatively, on different sectors of the population in different ways. A policy can cover: activities, functions, strategies, programmes, and services or processes.

The Equality Act 2010 harmonised existing equality legislation and includes a public sector duty ('the Duty') which requires public authorities to pay due regard to the need to:

  • eliminate discrimination, harassment, victimisation or any other prohibited conduct;
  • advance equality of opportunity; and
  • foster good relations between different groups – by tackling prejudice and promoting understanding.

Whilst there is not currently a specific Human Rights Impact Assessment, human rights considerations should be embedded throughout the policy making process. These considerations are set out within the EQIA.

What is a Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment?

The Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA) is used to identify, research, analyse and record the impact of a proposed policy on children's human rights and wellbeing. CRWIA helps the Scottish Government consider whether it is: advancing the rights of children in Scotland; and protecting and promoting the wellbeing of children and young people.

CRWIA is a Ministerial duty under the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 and in relation to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).

What is an Island Communities Impact Assessment?

An Island Communities Impact Assessment (ICIA) tests any new policy, strategy or service which is likely to have an effect on an island community which is significantly different from the effect on other communities. This became a legal duty in December 2020 under the Islands (Scotland) Act 2018.

What is the Fairer Scotland Duty Assessment?

The Fairer Scotland Duty (FSD) is set out in legislation as Part 1 of the Equality Act 2010, and came into force in Scotland from April 2018. The aim of the duty is to help the public sector to make better policy decisions and deliver fairer outcomes. The duty focuses on socio-economic inequality issues such as low income, low wealth, and area deprivation. The Fairer Scotland Duty applies to 'decisions of a strategic nature' – these are the key, high-level choices or plans that the public sector makes.

What is Strategic Environmental Assessment?

In Scotland, public bodies and private companies operating in a public character, such as utility companies, are required to assess, consult on, and monitor the likely impacts their plans, programmes and strategies will have on the environment. This process is known as Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA).

SEA helps to better protect the environment, aims to ensure that any development is sustainable, and increases opportunities for public participation in decision-making. It ensures that expert views are sought at various points in the preparation process from the public and the consultation authorities, who are:

  • Scottish Natural Heritage
  • Scottish Environmental Protection Agency
  • Historic Environment Scotland.



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