Commissions and commissioners: executive summary - easy read

Easy read version of a report which sets out research findings exploring the role of commissions and commissioners in supporting rights in Scotland and the UK. The research was commissioned by Scottish Government and undertaken by Research Scotland in 2022/23.

What powers do Commissions and Commissioners have?

Some of the different powers that Commissions and Commissioners in Scotland have are listed below:

  • The power to spread information and ideas about the best way to do things.
  • The power to do research.
  • The power to give advice and guidance to people.
  • The power to provide education and training.
  • The power to get public organisations and the government to respond to them.
  • The power to gather information and make it public.
  • The powers to review and recommend changes to the law and government policy.
  • The power to investigate issues with certain organisations and the power to get people to give evidence and show documents which will help with this.
  • The power to investigate people and organisations when they might be breaking the law.
  • The power to look into whether people and organisations are following the rules or not.
  • The power to enter an organisation which might be closed off and to interview and talk to people in certain places.
  • The power to give people and organisations notices which will force them to follow the rules.
  • The powers to make organisations agree to start acting in a better way and the power to report them if they do not do this.
  • The power to take people and organisations to court and the power to provide legal assistance for people.
  • The power to look and individual cases and make sure the law is being followed.



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