New Scots Refugee Integration Strategy: Delivery Plan 2024-2026

This Delivery Plan sets out the actions that the Scottish Government, COSLA and Scottish Refugee Council will take forward with partners during the period 2024 to 2026 to support the integration of refugees, people seeking asylum and other forced migrants within Scotland’s communities.

Outcome 5: Policy, strategic planning, and legislation, that have an impact on New Scots, are shaped through their participation and informed by their rights, needs and aspirations.

Actions under Outcome 5 recognise the importance of ensuring that New Scots have a meaningful voice in the development and implementation of policies and legislation that affect their lives. The actions also recognise the importance of understanding the implications of developments and changes made in both UK-wide immigration legislation and Scotland's devolved policies (e.g. ESOL, housing, health care, employability, ending destitution), as well as decisions being made at local level.

The involvement of New Scots is key to supporting this long-term outcome. The Strategy and Delivery Plan have a renewed focus on New Scots involvement in decision making. Research indicates that to-date, a lack of knowledge and experience of policies for devolved matters, has meant that there has been an inability to meaningfully feed back on the impact of these policies,[6] and through these actions we are seeking to address this.

Long-term Outcome 5 (5+years): Policy, strategic planning, and legislation, that have an impact on New Scots, are shaped throughtheir participation andinformed by their rights,needs and aspirations.

Activities planned for short term outcome

1: Lead

2: Other Partners

3: By when

Short term outcome (1-2 years)

5.1 Continued monitoring of the impacts of UK Government immigration legislation rules and policy in Scotland to inform approaches taken to manage risks.

  • 1. Scottish Government (Asylum and Refugee Integration), COSLA
  • 2. Scottish Refugee Council
  • 3. Ongoing

Service providers are aware of changes and adapt to ensure continued provision of support.

Impact and costs of legislation and implementation are monitored in relation to homelessness presentations / support/costs etc.

5.2 Take account of the rights and needs of New Scots in Scottish policy development and implementation through meaningful New Scots involvement, with an immediate focus on, but not limited to:

5.2.1 Continuing to raise awareness and support people who are at risk of, or experiencing destitution, in line with the Ending Destitution Together vision and principles and Ending Homelessness Together action plan.

5.2.2 Connecting New Scots Strategy to Mental Health Strategy, Suicide Prevention Strategy, and Scotland's Self-Harm Strategy and Action Plan.

  • 1. Scottish Government (Asylum and Refugee Integration) and COSLA
  • 2. Fair Way Scotland
  • 3. 2024-2025
  • 1. COSLA, Scottish Government (Mental Health and Wellbeing; Distress Intervention & Suicide Prevention)
  • 2. Scottish Refugee Council, NHS, Mental Health Foundation
  • 3. 2024-2025

Partners will be responsible for ensuring relevant strategies adopt a clear and inclusive approach to the involvement of New Scots in engagement and decision making.

5.2.3 Engaging New Scots on the delivery of Scotland's Hate Crime Strategy.

5.2.4 Engaging New Scots on the delivery of Scotland's Equally Safe strategy and wider Violence Against Women and Girls work to ensure the needs of New Scots are addressed.

  • 1. Scottish Government (Hate Crime)
  • 2. Police Scotland, New Scots Groups, Scottish Refugee Council, COSLA, local authorities
  • 3. By April 2026
  • 1. COSLA and Scottish Government (Equally Safe)

2 Equally Safe partners, Scottish Refugee Council

3. 2024-2025

5.2.5 Connect with the No One Left Behind strategy to ensure the needs of New Scots are addressed.

  • 1. COSLA, Scottish Government (Employability)
  • 2. Scottish Refugee Council, Scottish Local Authorities Economic Development Group (SLAED)
  • 3. 2025

5.2.6 Engaging New Scots on work to refresh Scotland's Trafficking and Exploitation Strategy.

1. Scottish Government (Victims and Witnesses Team)


5.3 Create pathways for New Scots to participate in community consultations used to shape strategies, policies and services for all those living in Scotland.

1. Mental Health Foundation

3. 2024-2026

Evidence that emerging strategies, policies and delivery plans reflect the voices of

New Scots alongside other


5.4 Identify, mentor and compensate New Scots with lived experience of different protection routes and life in different parts of Scotland to direct the delivery plan.

  • 1. Scottish Refugee Council - Refugee Support Service
  • 2. Scottish Government (Asylum and Refugee Integration), COSLA
  • 3. 2024

Delivery Plan actions are relevant to the rights and needs of all New Scots and better decisions are made.

Diverse refugee representation in the governance for the Delivery Plan.

5.5 The Leadership Board and Core Group engage with New Scots and New Scots communities to: communicate the purpose and goals of the Strategy, seek views on the impact of the Delivery Plan, and hear perspectives on future actions.

1. Leadership Board, Core Group

3. Ongoing

Refugee communities and receiving communities are better informed of the New Scots Strategy and actions being undertaken and can offer feedback on the progress of the Strategy and the Delivery Plan.

5.6 Produce guidance, support and signposting to organisations leading on New Scots actions to fully ensure refugee engagement and involvement.

  • 1. Scottish Refugee Council
  • 2. Scottish Government (Asylum and Refugee Integration), COSLA
  • 3. 2024

New Scots are meaningfully and effectively involved in the delivery of the New Scots Strategy actions.

5.7 Share expert knowledge on statelessness with policy makers and other relevant stakeholders and identify areas for further action (Policy Review and Workshop).

  • 1. Scottish Refugee Council, European Network on Statelessness
  • 2. Scottish Government (Asylum and Refugee Integration), University of Glasgow
  • 3. 2024-2025

Increase understanding of statelessness in Scotland amongst key stakeholders.

5.8 Build leadership and advocatory capacity within the New Scots community.

5.8.1 Deliver a programme to emerging and accomplished New Scots leaders to develop leadership skills and promote opportunities to build and act on their skills.

5.8.2 Support New Scots to participate in civic fora and other community engagement processes.

  • 1. Scottish Refugee Council - Refugee Support Service
  • 2. Social Enterprise Academy
  • 3. 2024-2025
  • 1. Mental Health Foundation

3. 2024-26

Leaders from New Scots communities grow their confidence and skills to take up leadership roles within their communities.

New Scots participate and remain on civic fora and community engagement fora

Positive impact on mental wellbeing.

5.9 Guide the Young People's Voices Group, a group of unaccompanied children and young people, in conducting a Scotland-wide survey on how unaccompanied children's rights as looked after children are being realised and to engage with key stakeholders.

  • 1. Scottish Refugee Council & Aberlour
  • 2. Scottish Government (Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children), local authorities
  • 3. 2024

Young people contribute their experiences and views to policy and strategic planning.

5.10 Connect New Scots strategy and Delivery Plan to The Promise to ensure unaccompanied young people are represented and their unique needs are recognised.

  • 1. COSLA, Scottish Government (Keeping the Promise; Children's Rights, Protection and Justice)
  • 2. The Promise Scotland
  • 3. Ongoing

Unaccompanied asylum seeking children fully benefit from the rights and support that all Looked After Children in Scotland are entitled to.

5.11 Partners will consider research needs, taking account of existing research and evidence, to help identify any further gaps.

  • 1. Scottish Government (Asylum and Refugee Integration), COSLA, Scottish Refugee Council
  • 2. Researchers
  • 3. 2024-2025

Data and evidence on the New Scots population and the needs of New Scots continues to be strengthened.



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