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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-10664: Alison Johnstone (Lothian)

Scottish Green Party

Date lodged: 10 August 2017

To ask the Scottish Government whether the Scottish Social Security Agency's offices will offer childcare provision.

Answered by: Jeane Freeman 7 September 2017

The detailed set up and facilities within the Social Security Agency’s offices have yet to be determined. We are at an early stage of understanding requirements and then specifying the layout of our buildings. There are a number of work streams associated with the requirement gathering not least through our consultation events and experience panels where we are committed to listening to those who use the current services, understanding the barriers which exist and supporting people as best we can.

The Agency Operations Reference Group has also been established and brings together practitioners, with operational experience in delivering effective public services, to help shape the agency. The aim of the Group is to learn from their experiences, make connections to identify possible co-location opportunities and raise the profile of the agency and its role. Membership of the Group is from across public and third sector organisations.

To ensure that trade unions have a voice in the overall agency set up process we have established the Social Security Agency Partnership Working Forum. Membership of the Forum includes PCS Scotland, who are also representing Prospect and FDA at Partnership meetings, and feeds into the Strategic Forum, which was established to consider employment issues arising from the Smith Commission and Scotland Act conclusions.