Tackling Prejudice and Building Connected Communities Action Group minutes: February 2019

Minutes from the meeting of the group on 28 February 2019.

Attendees and apologies

In attendance:

  • Chair: Aileen Campbell, MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Local Government, Scottish Government
  • [redacted], [redacted], COSLA
  • [redacted], [redacted], BEMIS
  • [redacted], [redacted], COSLA
  • [redacted], [redacted], Police Scotland
  • [redacted], [redacted], Respectme
  • [redacted], [redacted], Scottish Trans Alliance
  • [redacted], [redacted], CEMVO
  • [redacted], [redacted], YouthLink Scotland
  • [redacted], [redacted], Education Scotland
  • [redacted], [redacted], COPFS
  • [redacted], [redacted], Interfaith Scotland
  • [redacted], [redacted], Glasgow Disability Alliance

Official support

  • [redacted], Connected Communities, Scottish Government
  • [redacted], Cohesive Communities, Scottish Government
  • [redacted], Cohesive Communities, Scottish Government
  • [redacted], Cohesive Communities, Scottish Government
  • [redacted], Directorate for Learning, Scottish Government
  • [redacted], Justice Analytical Services, Scottish Government
  • [redacted], Justice Analytical Services, Scottish Government
  • Apologies: 
  • [redacted], [redacted], Equality and Human Rights Commission 

Items and actions

Welcome and introductions

The Cabinet Secretary thanked everyone for attending. Apologies had been received from [redacted] from the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

Minutes of previous meeting

The group agreed the minutes, with one amendment to the update provided by [redacted].


  • Cohesive Communities to amend minutes dated 26 September to reflect changes  

Hate crime data

Scottish Government statisticians provided an update on the Scottish Government’s report, ‘Developing Information on Hate Crime Recorded by the Police in Scotland’ which was published on 27 February. This is the first time the Scottish Government has published information on police recorded hate crime, across the five hate strands. Police Scotland are currently reviewing the process they use to record hate crime data. 

The group expressed disappointment that the report did not provide further breakdowns of the data. Statisticians explained that the IVPD system has limitations on the type of reports and data breakdowns it produces and that more work is required to improve the accuracy and comprehensiveness of the data captured by the system. 


  • Police Scotland and SG Statisticians to arrange a follow up workshop with the group to further consider the existing data and future reporting 

The group were concerned that current data collection was not fit for purpose and that it’s vital to have a system that is able to provide good reporting on hate crime statistics. The group agreed, for example, that more quantitative data on age and local authority should be provided. It was also agreed that qualitative information on victims experience would also be helpful. 

Police Scotland provided reassurance that they would explore the possibility of providing the data that partners were looking for, however the current system was not designed to produce much of the information currently being sought.  

The Cabinet Secretary was clear that this group has a role to play in looking at how improvements can be made. She also emphasised the importance of creating a timeline including when we will see further data from Police Scotland and the Scottish Government. 


  • following workshop Police Scotland/SG Statisticians to provide timeline of the development of hate crime data
  • Police Scotland/ SG Statisticians to provide information on hate crime data journey and cover at forthcoming workshop
  • Cohesive Communities to ensure the Cabinet Secretary for Justice is kept updated on this work 

Work plan

The Cabinet Secretary asked the group to consider the updated work plan which was updated to ensure a focus on delivery. 


  • Cohesive Communities to update work plan on hate crime data 

BEMIS suggested that the Action Group members provide an update on what they are doing to build connected communities. It was agreed that members can learn from one another and suggested that an additional work stream on prevention and early in intervention could help shape what this would look like. Police Scotland suggested that the group’s focus should be on strategy and not individual work streams. 


  • Cohesive Communities to consider early intervention and prevention in work plan 

[redacted] suggested this group could have a role in developing resources for schools as part of the PSE review. 


  • [redacted] to present to group what is available in schools and seek views from the group on how this could be developed

BEMIS provided an update on their planned conference for October 2019. BEMIS are keen for all Action Group members to participate and take ownership of parts of the day.


  • BEMIS to update the group on their plans for the conference and how they can support its development 
  • Cohesive Communities to set up knowledge hub for this group 

Lord Bracadale public consultation update

Connected Communities officials provided a short update to the group on the hate crime bill consultation which closed on 24 February. 11 consultation events were held across the country with around 400 people attending. The consultation received just over 1,200 responses. Alison Platts Research Services has been awarded the tender to carry out the independent analysis with the full analysis due to be published in June.  

Police Scotland campaign

Police Scotland updated the group on their recent campaign which will run until 10 March. This is the first time Police Scotland has taken a bespoke approach and targeted a specific group - on this occasion the night time economy.  The message from the campaign is ‘if you see a hate crime report it’. Once the campaign has concluded an analysis report will be produced. 


  • Police Scotland to bring campaign proposals to this group ahead of launch for future campaign activity 
  • Cohesive Communities to share hate crime campaign evaluation from ‘Letters from Scotland’ campaign with this group 


The Cabinet Secretary asked the group to consider third party reporting and asked for Police Scotland to provide an update.

Police Scotland explained that third party reporting was a priority and agreed re-branding is needed. [redacted] went on to explain some of the key issues including lack of training and awareness.  


  • Police Scotland to share a paper on third party reporting with the group ahead of the next meeting 
  • members to share ideas for third party reporting centres with Police Scotland to help inform their report 


The Cabinet Secretary asked the group to consider any emerging tensions in relation to Brexit that they become aware of so we can ensure that we can respond appropriately. 

Connected Communities 
April 2019

Back to top