Date lodged: 4 September 2017
To ask the Scottish Government, in light of the evidence gaps highlighted in Scotland's Equality Evidence Strategy 2017-2021, how it will fill these gaps to support the measurement of the impact of the planned introduction of the socio-economic duty across the public sector, and whether the gaps relevant to poverty and inequality will be filled prior to its planned introduction.
Answered by: Angela Constance 13 September 2017
There are already a number of sources of evidence that can underpin the planned socio-economic duty. The Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD) provides a highly effective localised data source on socio-economic disadvantage, and this has been complemented recently by commissioned work from David Simmonds Consultancy and Heriot-Watt University on small area estimates of income and poverty. Scottish Household Survey and the Labour Force Survey includes a range of data around employment, levels of skills and occupational sectors, and NHS Health Scotland produce data on health inequalities and outcomes by local authority and by SIMD categories. Administrative data held by public bodies can be added to these sources. There is therefore a range of evidence available for public bodies to deliver the planned socio-economic duty. However, the Equality Evidence Strategy sets out the process for further development of data on socio-economic status over the next four years.