We Asked, You Said, We Did

Below are some of the issues we have recently consulted on and their outcomes.

We Asked

Should Changing Places Toilets (larger sanitary accommodation for people with more complex care needs) be provided in certain large new non-domestic buildings through the Scottish building standards system. 

You Said

We received a total of 1112 responses to the consultation.  Responses were received from 1040 individuals and 72 organisations.

You were overwhelmingly supportive of the requirement for Changing Places Toilets in large new non domestic buildings.  You provided many examples of the positive impact these facilities have of the lives of people with complex care needs, their family, friends and carers.  You offered a number of suggestions on further situations where these facilities could be provided.

We Did

We have published the responses to the consultation and an analysis report summarising your responses.   

In consideration of your responses, we have amended consultation proposals. We have now published the 2019 Non-domestic Technical Handbook which introduces a new clause under standard 3.12 (sanitary facilites). This sets out where a Changing Places Toilet should be provided as part of new buildings or new building work. This provision applies from 1 October 2019.

We Asked

Scottish Crown Estate rural assets include 37,000 hectares (around 91,000 acres) of land in rural Scotland. The vast majority is let for a variety of uses including farming, residential, commercial, sporting and mineral operations. Forestry assets on these estates are managed directly by us rather than being let.

It also includes salmon fishing rights on many Scottish rivers and the rights to naturally-occurring gold and silver across much of Scotland.

Crown Estate Scotland put forward a number of key considerations related to the overall long-term objectives of managing the rural assets and asked to hear your views on how we should actively manage these assets to drive inclusive sustainable development.

You Said

The consultation was open online from 15 February to 26 April 2019. In total 33 respondents were submitted online, from 9 individuals and 24 organisations. The responses provided constructive answers and suggestions to the 30 questions asked in the consultation document. In addition, some verbal feedback was gathered at community events.

Respondents said they wanted to see a real difference between land managed on a purely commercial basis and land managed by Crown Estate Scotland. The responses supported a collaborative management approach, with Crown Estate Scotland improving access to information, increasing transparency in decision-making and conducting early and meaningful engagement with affected parties.

The responses strongly supported provision for biodiversity improvement throughout the rural assets and a desire to see Crown Estate Scotland take an ambitious approach to the natural environment to achieve this.

We Did

On this page, you can find the published non-confidential responses to the consultation. We will shortly publish an analysis of the consultation responses on our website and on this consultation summary page.

We will use your feedback to inform the content of the Rural Assets Strategy. Responses will also be used to develop the Crown Estate Scotland Corporate Plan 2020-2023, which will be consulted on in autumn 2019. We will publicise the opportunity to engage with us on our Corporate Plan development widely, but if you would like to be notified via email when this consultation opens please let us know by getting in touch with us at corporate@crownestatescotland.com.

We Asked

We asked for views on implementing recommendations from the Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Action Group (HARSAG) to commence the Local Connection and Intentionality provisions in the Homelessness etc. (Scotland) Act 2003.

Local connection

Local connection is defined in the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987 as a connection which a person has with an area because:

  • they are or were in the past normally resident in it, and this residence was of their own choice; or
  • they are employed in it; or
  • they have family associations; or
  • they have special circumstances.

Local authorities currently have the power under the Act to refer homeless households who do not have a local connection with them to another local authority where they do have such a connection. We invited views on our plans to commence the provision in the Homelessness etc. (Scotland) Act 2003 which allows Scottish Ministers to modify referrals relating to local connection and our intention to implement the proposal from HARSAG to suspend referrals in Scotland.

Intentionality

The Housing (Scotland) Act 1987 currently places a duty on local authorities to investigate whether a person applying to them for accommodation became homeless or threatened with homelessness intentionally. We asked for views on our intention to commence the provision in the Homelessness etc. (Scotland) Act 2003 to give local authorities discretion, rather than the current duty, to investigate intentionality.

We also invited views on HARSAG’s recommendation to narrow the definition of intentionality to focus on instances of applicants ‘deliberately manipulating’ the homelessness system.

You Said

We received 72 responses to the consultation from a range of individuals, local authorities, third sector organisations and others. 

Local connection

The highest level of support (46%) was for suspending local connection referrals across all local authorities in Scotland. 26% supported modifying local connection referrals in another way and 18% supported not commencing the provisions. A further 10% did not respond to this question.

Two key themes emerged in responses. The first, from those favouring suspension, was support for people experiencing homelessness to be able to choose where they wish to settle. This was seen as offering choice to people experiencing homelessness, removing unnecessary barriers to finding permanent accommodation and ensuring that homelessness services can be delivered at the point of need.

The second key theme, from those not favouring suspension, was concern over the potential increase to the numbers of referrals in areas that do not have the resources to meet needs.  Various different types of local authority were cited, including major cities such as Glasgow or Edinburgh, urban areas or rural and island and highland areas.

Intentionality

The highest level of support (50%) was for removing the duty and giving local authorities the discretion to assess households for intentionality.  33% supported not removing the duty and a further 17% did not respond to this question.

The main theme cited in support of removing the duty was that being labelled as intentionally homeless is often unfair and does not reflect the true picture of individuals’ circumstances. It was felt by many that the removal of the duty in favour of discretion would benefit vulnerable people in particular so that they can get the help and support they need.

For those in favour of not removing the duty, a number of potential issues were cited. These included: the potential for a lack of consistency of approach if the duty was reduced to a power, both at local authority level and between local authorities; concerns that people could manipulate the system; and the potential that individuals might no longer see the need to take personal responsibility to retain their accommodation (e.g. not paying rent).

We Did

It is our intention to commence the Local Connection and Intentionality provisions in the Homelessness etc. (Scotland) Act 2003 in November 2019, after further discussions with COSLA, local authorities and others around issues raised in the consultation. For Intentionality, the provisions would come into force immediately but for Local Connection a process would begin for the Scottish Government to consult on and issue a Ministerial Statement within 12 months of commencement on how these new powers are to be used. Subject to the outcome, this would be followed by a further Scottish Statutory Instrument laid in the Scottish Parliament to implement the changes.

We will carefully consider the views expressed on narrowing the definition of intentionality to focus on instances of applicants ‘deliberately manipulating’ the homelessness system.  As stated in the consultation paper, there are currently no provisions in the legislation for the definition to be changed but the responses to the consultation will be very helpful as we consider the options for taking this work forward.

We will monitor the impact of the changes on individuals experiencing homelessness, local authorities and third sector providers using evidence from current data collections, and we will publish this data regularly. We will also set out plans for further engagement and possible research to help more fully understand the impact of the changes.

We have published the responses that gave permission and an analysis of the consultation responses can be found here.

We Asked

Scotland’s climate is warming, the growing season is getting longer, and we are facing more extreme weather and rising sea levels. We need to safeguard our future by adapting to these changes. Programme for Government 2018 committed us to develop a new five-year Climate Change Adaptation Programme for Scotland.
 
We asked to hear your views on the new Programme: its vision, outcomes, sub-outcomes and the policies in place to deliver these, as well as how we should monitor progress.

You Said

We received 73 consultation responses from 58 organisations, including Sunnyside Primary School in Glasgow, and 15 individuals.
 
Respondents said they want to see the vision for the Programme convey a strong sense of urgency and ambition, in line with the climate emergency, and link to urgent mitigation action.
 
The responses strongly supported key features of the new Programme - linking to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Scotland’s National Performance Framework; an outcome-based approach; the establishment of a National Forum for adaptation; the inclusion of behaviour change; the integration of monitoring and evaluation from the outset; and the content of the Strategic Environmental Assessment Report.
 
Responses had many constructive suggestions on making the Programme as cross-cutting and effective as possible. Views on the seven high-level outcomes and the list of supporting policies were generally supportive with many suggestions for additional policies reflecting specific sectoral interests.

We Did

We have published non-confidential responses to the consultation and an analysis of the consultation responses (links below). We will build on the significant achievements of the past decade and we will use your feedback to develop the Programme for launch later in 2019.

We Asked

We asked for views on potential improvements to the statutory charity regulation framework in Scotland, in light of proposals put forward by the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) and the passage of time since the 2005 Act.

The proposals broadly focussed on improvements to charity law that would increase transparency and accountability in order to maintain public trust and confidence in charities and OSCR.

You Said

We received 307 responses to the consultation from a range of individuals, charitable organisations and others with an interest in charity law. 

The majority of respondents supported the proposals in the consultation, however the analysis report makes clear that more policy development work and stakeholder engagement is required before we could bring forward any legislative changes.

Further formal consultation is also required with the Information Commissioner’s Office, as a number of the proposals impact on data protection.

We Did

We have published the responses that gave permission and an analysis of the consultation responses.

We will fully consider all the points raised, including engaging with those who called for wider changes to the regulation. Collaborative work with the third sector and other key stakeholders will continue as we develop and refine the proposals.

We will also work with OSCR to establish a working group to address outstanding issues with The Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisations (Removal from the Register and Dissolution) Regulations 2011.  We will look to bring forward amendment regulations in this session to preserve public trust in the SCIO model.

We Asked

We asked for views on two minor amendments to road works legislation. Firstly, we sought views on the proposal to revoke the Scottish Statutory Instrument,  “The “Scottish Road Works Register (Prescribed Fees) Regulations 2017” and replace it with a new Regulation to account for the running costs of £855,000 for the 2019/20 financial year. Secondly, we sought views on amending “The Road Works (Qualifications of Operative and Supervisors (Scotland) Regulations 2017”, by expanding the list of approved awarding bodies to include a fourth body, “Lantra” 

You Said

In total, nine responses to the consultation were received, from utility undertakers, roads authorities and one individual. Brief analysis of these responses is detailed below. Two additional responses were received after the closing date, and so do not feature in the analysis, but have been considered.

 

We Did

These responses have been fully considered. We will now amend/replace both Scottish Statutory Instruments as proposed.

We Asked

Does the Scottish Hate Crime legislation need changed to ensure it is fit for 21st Century Scotland and does it afford sufficient protection for those that need it. 

We also asked if additional statutory aggravations are required.

You Said

We received over one thousand responses to the consultation and around 400 people attended the consultation events. 

You commented on our proposals giving reasons for either supporting or not supporting individual prposals.

We Did

We are currently considering all consultation responses as we continue to develop our consolidated hate crime legislation to be put before Holyrood during the current parliamentary period.

We Asked

We asked for your opinion on proposals to permit motorsports events, such as stage rallies, hill climbs and trials of speed, on closed public roads in certain circumstances.  We sought your views on a proposed two stage regulatory process whereby an event organiser would be required to seek a motorsports permit from the relevant Motorsports Governing Body and then a Motorsports Order from the relevant Local Roads Authority.

You Said

We received a total of 3,788 responses to the public consultation.  There was clear support for the introduction of a two stage application process with 98% of respondents in support of that proposal.  There was also clear support (99%) for the proposals to give powers to Local Roads Authorities to close public roads for motorsports events in line with the powers they already have for other events.

We Did

We have published non-confidential responses to the consultation and an analysis of the consultation responses (link below).  Preparations are now underway for new regulations and the feedback received from this consultation will help shape that process.

The full analysis report can be found here.

We Asked

If you agree with this amendment to increase the higher age limit for persons eligible for continuing care from twenty to twenty-one years of age, from 1 April 2019.  This is the final in the agreed annual roll out strategy to ensure the initial cohort of young people (born after 1 April 1999) remain eligible until the duty to provide continuing care extends from 16 to 21 years of age.

You Said

The public consultation received 26 responses from 4 individuals and 22 organisations including from COSLA, local authorities, the Care Inspectorate, the third sector and individuals. Respondents all agreed with the intention of the Draft Order.  We have published the responses with respect to the handling permissions provided to us.

We also invited any others comments on the draft Order and the Continuing Care provision more broadly. Where respondents have offered comment we summarised the key points raised and, where appropriate, offered a response to these concerns in the Consultation Analysis Report which can be accessed here: 

The Continuing Care (Scotland) Amendment Order 2019; Consultation Analysis Report

We Did

Of the responses received there was universal agreement that extending the upper age limit of eligibility to twenty-one is the expected and welcomed course of action. As a result, no adjustments were requested or made to the drafting of the Order.  The Draft Order was laid in the Scottish Parliament on 25 January 2019 for scrutiny.  If approved by parliament, this Order will come into force on 1 April 2019 meaning that eligible young people will be entitled to remain in Continuing Care up to age twenty-one. 

 Links:

 The Continuing Care (Scotland) Amendment Order 2019; Consultation Analysis Report

Published Responses:

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish them.

We Asked

We asked for views on the inclusion of Narrow Trenching as a technique to the Specification for the Reinstatement of Openings in Roads in Scotland, and held a public consultation which was open for 12 weeks from 18 October 2018.

You Said

In total 49 responses to the consultation were received: 26 Roads Authorities responses, 8 responses from Statutory Undertakers, 7 Responses from Contractors/Service providers, 4 responses from Private Individuals,  2 responses from Industry Groups and 2 responses from Trunk Road Operating Companies.

We Did

All responses have been fully considered. The SROR will be amended to include 'narrow trenching' as a technique in 2019.

We Asked

We asked for views on a draft of Scotland’s Forestry Strategy 2019-2029: its vision, objectives and priorities, as well as the ways in which we could monitor progress.

You Said

We received a total of 442 responses to the public consultation. 102 (23%) of these were from organisations, with the remaining 340 (77%) submitted by individuals. 216 of the responses from individuals (49% of the total number of responses) were identical and generated as part of a campaign led by Woodland Trust Scotland.

There was general support for the draft Strategy and its content. However, there were also numerous, yet often conflicting requests for changes to be made to the detail, structure and presentation of the document.

We Did

We have published non-confidential responses to the consultation and an independent analysis of the consultation responses (links below). Alongside the final Strategy, a report outlining our approach to consultation and explaining how consultation responses informed the final content and structure of the Strategy is available at: https://www.gov.scot/policies/forestry/forestry-strategy/

We Asked

This consultation set out the rationale for making it a requirement for all members of Boards of Health Bodies to be members of the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme. 

We asked you whether you thought the policy should apply to all Board members (both executive and non-executive) and across all Health Bodies.

The consultation ran between 31 August and 23 November 2018.

You Said

We received a total of 34 responses from a range of different organisations and individuals.  85% of the responses offered full support of the policy – that all members of Boards of all Health Bodies should be required to be members of the PVG Scheme. 

The Commissioner for Ethical standards in Public Life in Scotland did not give a view on the policy but noted that he would be supportive of the policy as long as it was implemented in a way that remained consistent with the Code of Practice for Ministerial Appointments to Public Bodies in Scotland.

NHS Health Scotland responded that as the organisation will soon cease to exist they did not think the policy should be applied to their Board members.

3 other respondents indicated that they didn’t think that it was necessary to implement this policy for all members, only those who have unsupervised contact with vulnerable groups.

We Did

We are now working with Disclosure Scotland to make changes to the relevant legislation which will mean that members of Boards of all Health Bodies will be required to be members of the PVG Scheme.

We are also developing new learning packages for Board Members to raise awareness about the PVG Scheme.

We Asked

We asked for views to help inform and further refine how the Scottish National Investment Bank will operate, how its relationship with Ministers and the wider population will develop and how its strategic direction will be set by missions.

Respondents were asked to give their views on the proposed objectives and purposes of the Bank, and share views on the statement of the Vision for the Bank. Responses generally fell within 5 broad themes identified across all 16 questions:

  • The opportunity and the Bank’s objectives and purpose
  • The focus for investment activities
  • Operating model, classification and capitalisation
  • Governance and relationship with Ministers
  • The Bank’s staffing and employment arrangements

The consultation was open from 5 September to 31 October 2018. In addition, nine stakeholder workshops and twelve bilateral meetings were held with key stakeholders.

You Said

The consultation received 1,443 responses comprising of 40 responses from organisations, 1,383 responses as part of a campaign from Friends of the Earth Scotland and a further 20 responses from individuals. We published the responses on 28 November 2018.

Overall respondents supported the creation of the Bank, the Bank’s objectives and purpose, seeing it as an opportunity to support and grow Scotland’s economy. A range of perspectives were provided, with many supporting the Bank’s vision to move to a low carbon, high-tech, connected, globally competitive and inclusive economy.

A significant number of respondents were supportive of the Bank’s proposed investment activities, with many advocating the Bank’s mission-based approach, the investment strategy and ethical commitment. There was very strong support for the Bank’s proposed mission to support Scotland’s transition to a low carbon economy.

While a range of views were expressed, the overarching opinion was that the Bank’s culture, governance, approach to businesses and individuals must be different to that of other financial institutions.

Several respondents were supportive of the Bank’s operational approach. A significant number of respondents supported the Bank’s governance arrangements and the fact that the Bank should be accountable to Scottish Ministers, while maintaining operational and administrative independence.

Some respondents raised concerns over whether the proposals for capitalisation were sufficient to support the Bank but there was recognition that the proposed level of capitalisation was ambitious and achievable. Others remarked that it would be important that the Bank was not subject to political pressure.

On remuneration, there was recognition that the Bank will operate within the financial services sector and to succeed will need to be competitive to attract the right skills and expertise. However, respondents also felt this needs to be balanced with the Public Sector Pay Policy.

We Did

We commissioned an independent analysis of the consultation responses, including views gathered during the stakeholder workshops and bilateral meetings. You can read this here.

The Scottish Government will be introducing legislation to support the establishment and capitalisation of the Bank in late February 2019. The responses are being considered carefully to help inform the content of the legislation and shape the structure of the new body.

We will continue to engage with stakeholders as we develop the proposals to ensure we build an institution with the right values, vision and purpose.

We Asked

We asked for views on the introduction of electronic invoicing to the Scottish public sector and held a public consultation which was open for 12 weeks from 1st August 2018.

You Said

In total 21 responses to the consultation were received: 13 from local authorities; 1 from NHS; 2 from central government; 2 from trade organisations; 2 from suppliers; and 1 from an individual.

All bar one respondent agreed that the introduction of eInvoicing was a positive step and 80% of respondents highlighted some procedural barriers or challenges in the implementation of eInvoicing.

We Did

All responses have been fully considered and all non-confidential responses received have been published. The EU Directive 2014/55/EU on Electronic Invoicing in Public Procurement will be implemented through amendment to the Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations and will come into force 18 April 2019.

We Asked

For your views on two proposals intended to create independent oversight of the acquisition, retention, use and disposal of biometric data for criminal justice purposes: the establishment of a new independent Scottish Biometrics Commissioner; and the creation of a draft Code of Practice for the collection, use and disposal of biometric data.  As part of our consultation we set out a draft high level Code of Practice describing the legal framework and proposed general principles; and a note describing the possible general functions and powers of  a new Biometrics Commissioner, for your views. 

The key aim was to seek your feedback on our proposals which aim to ensure an effective, proportionate and ethical approach to the use of biometric data, particularly with regard to children under the age of 18, which will in turn enhance public and professional confidence in the use of such data.

These proposals follow recommendations from an Independent Advisory Group (IAG) which reported to Scottish Government in March 2018.  The full IAG report is available to read at https://www.gov.scot/publications/report-independent-advisory-group-use-biometric-data-scotland/.

You Said

Our consultation on these proposals ran from 13 July to 1 October.  We received a total of 89 responses. The largest number (88%) were from individuals, with a small number from public sector organisations (7%); third sector organisations (4%) and a professional body (1%).  We also held four consultation stakeholder events (Scottish Youth Parliament; Equalities Groups; Police Workforce; and a mixed event including academics).  These were attended by a total of 44 individuals. 

Respondents were broadly supportive of the two key legislative proposals included in the consultation: 89% being in favour of the establishment of a Scottish Biometrics Commissioner; and 83% of respondents supporting the need for a Code of Practice. Some respondents were in favour of extending the scope of the Code and the Commissioner beyond Justice, to include other public authorities and the private sector.

We Did

We published the 40  submitted responses to the consultation where consent had been given to publish the response, on our consultation webpage available at https://consult.gov.scot/safer-communities/use-of-biometric-data/consultation/published_select_respondent.  

We also commissioned and published an independent analysis of our consultation responses.  The full report was published on 26 November 2018 and is available to download at https://consult.gov.scot/safer-communities/use-of-biometric-data/results/biometricsdata-finalconsultationanalysis.pdf.

We announced our intention to introduce a Biometric Data Bill in the  Programme for Government published in September 2018. The Bill will provide a legislative basis for the creation of an independent Scottish Biometrics Commissioner and a Code of Practice, as proposed in the consultation document. 

We will carefully consider findings from your responses and continue to engage with key stakeholders to further refine the policy and shape the content of legislation.  Subject to the wider parliamentary timetable, we expect the Bill to be introduced in the first half of 2019.

We Asked

We sought views on the investment priorities and charging principles for the period 2021-27.

You Said

You were broadly content with the proposed documents.  However, there was disagreement with the proposal to alter the single occupant status discount.

We Did

Further engagement will be undertaken with the affected demographics and relevant interest groups before any amendments are made to the existing household discounts.

We Asked

We asked for views on a new body called Consumer Scotland, and whether the Scottish Government should develop a statutory duty on Scottish public authorities to improve how consumers are considered during policy and decision-making. We held a public consultation, which was open for 12 weeks from 4 July 2018. During this period we also held a series of events so that regulators, consumer groups and enforcement agencies could share their thoughts.

You Said

We received a total of 58 responses to the consultation from consumer groups, regulators, businesses and individuals. Most responses were supportive of our plans to create a new consumer body that would carry out in-depth investigations into the areas of most serious harm to consumers in Scotland. A majority were also supportive of the idea of a consumer duty.

 

We also received feedback on the action needed for a consumer body to succeed, including ensuring that there is clarity around its role in the landscape and that it has the right powers and functions to make a real difference for consumers.

We Did

We commissioned an independent analysis of the consultation responses. You can read this at https://www.gov.scot/publications/analysis-responses-consultation-consumer-body-scotland/.

 

The Scottish Government will be introducing a Bill to establish the new consumer body and the consumer duty in the coming months. The responses have helped develop the legislation and will continue to guide our thinking as the practical arrangements for the new body and duty are considered.

We Asked

Compliance and Enforcement - Are the roles and responsibilities of verifiers, building owners and developers clearly defined and recorded and should there be greater emphasis on inspection and testing, particularly of safety critical elements, throughout construction and at completion?

Workforce - Do you agree that verifiers, building owners and developers have the expected level of resources and skills need to undertake verification activity? 

Fire Safety - About the structure of the Technical Handbooks and Annexes and other ways of complying with building regulations. Whether a national “hub” approach should be developed to assist the verifying of fire safety engineering designs. Whether external wall cladding systems meeting European Classification A1 and A2 should apply to more building situations and if full scale façade tests should continue to be cited as an alternative. Whether an additional escape stair and an evacuation alert system be introduced to new high rise domestic building.  Whether new build flats, houses in multiple occupation with care 24/7 and large HMOs with more than 10 residents should require automatic fire suppression systems (sprinklers).

You Said

We received a total of 222 responses to the consultation from individuals and organisations. 246 individuals attended world café events at Edinburgh, Glasgow, Stirling and Aberdeen to discuss proposals and help shape the policy.

Compliance and Enforcement - The vast majority of respondents said roles and responsibilities of all parties involved in the building standards system should be more clearly defined.  Most respondents said it is essential for a stronger focus on safety critical elements throughout the build.  Most believe there is already a strong focus on these aspects and that a holistic approach is taken to bring a focus on high risk and complex designs whilst the current approach to low risk buildings is retained.

Workforce - The majority of respondents agreed that more and consistent resourcing of verification and better skilled verifiers are required.  This can be achieved by Scottish Government setting a minimum requirement for skills and resource and that uneven levels of experience should be addressed with an up-skill in verifiers’ knowledge and competence to support independence in verification.  It was recognised that building owners and developers also require the necessary skills and resource to assure themselves and the verifier of compliance.

Fire Safety - The majority of respondents agreed that that European Classification A1 and A2 should be introduced at 11m and to assembly/entertainment buildings, hospitals and residential care buildings of any height. That the full scale façade test to BS 8414 (and BR 135) continue to be cited as an alternative. Over one-third of respondents who were unsure cited lack of knowledge. The majority of respondents agreed that two stairs, an evacuation alert system to assist the fire and rescue services and automatic fire suppression systems should be introduced in new build flats, houses in multiple occupation with care 24/7 and large HMOs with more than 10 residents. Of those who disagreed, many cited cost and lack of evidence base to support the proposals.

We Did

Compliance and Enforcement - We have worked with Local Authority Building Standards Scotland to strengthn existing guidance on roles and responsibilities of everyone involved in achieving compliance with building standards.  Guidance contained in the Building Standards Procedural Handbook has been updated to strengthen and clarify the roles and responsibilities of those involved from pre-application discussion, approval of a building warrant application, inspection and testing during construction and the types of information to show compliance throughout and at completion.  This includes improved guidance on the inspection of large complex buildings and the need for inspections of key safety critical elements. 

Guidance relating to the use of the Construction Compliance and Notification Plan has been updated to set out the key construction stages that will require inspection with specific advice on safety critical elements.  The guidance stresses the importance of the verifier being notified at the correct time to undertake effective inspection and testing.  The guidance encourages early engagement by all parties, regular communication and improved partnership working throughout the duration of the building project. 

Workforce - we are developing a national building standards verification workforce strategy aimed at improving resourcing and competence.  The outcome will be a verification service that is sustainable, responsive to change and focused on customers.  The strategy will embrace work to establish a Professional Development Framework for all building standards staff to gain an accurate picture of competence, identify specific skill gaps and inform the development of new educational routes for professional development.

A working group comprising representatives from local government, academia, the education and skills sector and industry bodies is supporting development of national and local level actions that will address the issues faced by verifiers.  The strategy is expected to launch in March 2020.

Fire Safety - We have published revised Technical Handbooks to include more stringent fire safety provisions for external wall cladding systems, an additional escape stair, evacuation alert system and storey identification signs to help fire and rescue services in the unlikely event of a partial or full-scale evacuation of a high rise domestic building.

 We have agreed to defer the introduction of automatic fire suppression systems (AFSS) in all new build flats, houses in multiple occupation with care 24/7 and large HMOs with more than 10 residents until 2021 to align with our commitment to introduce AFSS in new build social housing.

We Asked

We asked for views on the proposed content of the 3 year Action Plan for taking forward children’s rights from 2018-2021; a plan that the Scottish Ministers are required to lay before the Scottish Parliament in accordance with duties under section 1(4) of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 (2014 Act).  The consultation paper asked about the overall content of the Plan and the possible inclusion of the following strategic actions:

  1. Development of a dynamic Participation Framework for Children and Young People.
  2. Ambitious delivery, through co-production, of the 3 year children’s rights awareness programme.
  3. Progressing the comprehensive audit on the most effective and practical way to further embed the principles of the UNCRC into policy, practice and legislation, including the option of full incorporation into domestic law. 
  4. Evaluation of the Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA).

Views were also sought on whether the Action Plan should include a summary of policy specific initiatives being taken forward across all Scottish Government portfolios, which strengthen how children and young people experience their rights, including in relation to child poverty, bullying, mental health, youth justice etc.  The consultation suggested that the inclusion of this summary would allow the Action Plan to more effectively capture all that the Scottish Ministers intend to achieve for children and young people until 2021, in addition to the proposed strategic actions.

The consultation also suggested that the Action Plan might include a number of policy specific actions, identified through the consultation process, that were not being taken forward currently through Scottish Government initiatives.   

You Said

The consultation, which ran from 2 July until 26 September, included a formal consultation document, published on Citizen Space, and an easy-read survey monkey.  The consultation document received 114 responses, including from local authorities, the third sector, academics and individuals.  The easy-read survey monkey received 403 responses.

In line with provisions in section 1(5) of the 2014 Act, separate engagement with children and young people, including with representatives from particular groups of children and young people and the organisations that represent them, also informed the development of the Action Plan.

The responses received to the consultation expressed overwhelming support for the proposed content of the Action Plan.  However, respondents made a number of suggestions in relation to the proposed strategic actions, including the need:

  • for the approach to participation to target and engage effectively with seldom heard groups of children and young people and to support and promote a range of methods for participation, including non-digital approaches;
  • for further clarity on the proposal around a central resource to increase the capacity of the third sector to support Scottish Government business areas to engage with children and young people;
  • to align the strategic actions with other current cross-cutting initiatives, e.g. on Adverse Childhood Experiences and mental health and wellbeing;
  • to ensure that the proposed approach to participation is informed by current research and international best practice;
  • to ensure ongoing dialogue with the third sector, local government and public bodies as well as key organisations and professionals working with children and young people, including schools and nurseries, children’s services, etc.;
  • to support and promote awareness and understanding of children’s rights amongst parents and carers;
  • to improve the format and dissemination of the Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment;
  • to link the strategic actions to the relevant articles of the UNCRC and for outputs from these actions to be accessible; and 
  • to ensure effective governance and oversight of the ongoing delivery of the Action Plan.

A number of respondents to the consultation also called for the incorporation of the UNCRC into Scots Law.  Action 3 of the consultation has now been superseded by the commitment in the Scottish Government’s Programme for Government 2018-19, to incorporate the principles of the UNCRC into Scots Law.  

Comments were also made about specific policy issues, including the use of mosquito anti-loitering devices, Getting it right for every child and the teaching of sexual education in schools etc.  The Progressing the Human Rights of Children in Scotland: A Report 2015-2018 (December 2018), which was also published in line with provisions in Part 1 of the 2014 Act, sets out the Scottish Government’s approach to these issues.   

In response to comments made, the Action Plan was renamed, Progressing the Human Rights of Children in Scotland: An Action Plan 2018-21.   

We Did

Following the consultation, we published the non-confidential Responses to the consultation document on Citizen Space.  We also undertook an initial internal review of the responses received. 

An independent contractor, Kantar Public, was commissioned to analyse the responses to both the formal consultation and the survey monkey.  Their Report has been published on the Scottish Government’s website.   

The points raised in the consultation were taken into account in the development of the, Progressing the Human Rights of Children in Scotland: An Action Plan 2018-2021, which was laid before the Scottish Parliament on 20 December 2018.  Alongside the 4 strategic actions, the Plan also includes information on governance and a non-exhaustive list of key ongoing Scottish Government initiatives relevant to children’s rights.

In relation to governance, a Children’s Rights Advisory Group will be established to oversee the delivery of the Action Plan and provide a leadership space to discuss ideas and issues to make children’s rights real in Scotland.  We have also committed to provide an annual update on progress made in taking forward the strategic actions.  

The findings of the consultation will also inform the ongoing implementation of the strategic actions over the 3 year duration of the Plan.  

 

We Asked

We sought your views on the best approach to deliver a deposit return scheme for Scotland that would achieve the following principles:

  •  increase the quantity of target materials captured for recycling
  • improve the quality of material captured, to allow for higher value recycling
  • encourage wider behaviour change in the use of materials
  • deliver maximum economic and societal benefit for Scotland.

 The consultation sought feedback on eleven components that will comprise a well- designed and effective system:

  •  What materials will be collected
  • What types of products will have a deposit on them
  • Where you will be able to get the deposit back
  • How the scheme will be paid for
  • How the scheme is communicated so everyone understands it
  • How to prevent fraud in the system
  • How much the deposit should be
  • What infrastructure to put in place, and the logistics involved
  • How to create additional benefits from the scheme
  • Who owns the system
  • How the system is regulated

You Said

The consultation received 3,215 responses. This comprised responses from 159 organisations, 2,008 individuals and 1,048 campaign respondents.

 There was widespread agreement amongst both organisational and individual respondents that a well-run and appropriately targeted DRS could provide opportunities in relation to improving the environment, changing people’s attitudes to recycling and littering, and building the circular economy. In relation to the design and operation of the scheme, there was a range of areas in which respondents (both organisations and individuals) expressed a large degree of consensus, and other areas where there was some divergence.

 A key point is that there was support for a scheme that included the widest range of materials possible. However, organisations (and especially food and drink producers, retailers, and recycling and waste management organisations) were much more likely than individuals to favour a scheme which targeted a more limited set of materials – PET plastic, metal cans and, to a lesser extent, glass. Furthermore, there was widespread agreement that the scheme should use either a model based on take-back to a place that sells drinks, or a mixture of take-back and designated drop-off.  Responses indicated support for a deposit in excess of 15p to ensure the system is effective and provides the right incentive to encourage recycling.  A number of cross-cutting themes were identified, including the need for the scheme to be as accessible as possible, including strong communications; that it should be seen as part of wider work on producer responsibility; and that any design developed should be evidence based.

We Did

We have commissioned independent analysis of the consultation responses, and have published the final report of the analysis here: https://www.gov.scot/publications/deposit-return-scheme-scotland-analysis-responses/

 We have also published those responses where consent has been given to publish, which can be found here:

 The feedback and evidence from the consultation has been fed into the on-going design work of a deposit return scheme for Scotland. We will announce next steps on this shortly.