Date: 21 June 2024
Time: 10:00 – 11:00
Venue: Microsoft Teams



  • Dr Marilyn Howard (Chair)
  • Dr Mark Simpson (Member)

Apologies: None

In attendance (SCoSS Secretariat)—

  • Andrew Strong, Head of Policy and Scrutiny
  • Christopher Galloway, Analysis and Participation Support Officer

1. Welcome

Marilyn welcomed the attendees to the meeting.  There were no apologies and no interests were declared.

2. Matters arising from previous meeting

No issues from the previous meeting were raised.

3. Updated project plan – external research

Members considered an updated version of the subcommittee’s project plan, including proposals to hold stakeholder events with third sector organisations. Members identified additional third sector organisations and groups that the subcommittee may wish to engage with during the course of the research.

Stakeholders highlighted the need for final outputs to be made available in accessible formats, prompting discussions about the budget required to accommodate this.

The Secretariat has approached Social Security Scotland’s Inclusive Communications team who are willing to meet with members. It was agreed that proposed questions should be shared with them beforehand.

Action: The Secretariat will share proposed questions with Social Security Scotland ahead of structured interview with officials.

Members were content with the proposed timeline for stakeholder engagement ahead of publication and promotion.

Members and the Secretariat discussed and agreed on their respective roles in facilitating upcoming focus groups and structured interviews. In general, Chris and Andrew will represent SCoSS at the focus groups, with members participating in structured interviews. The dates of all events will, however, be shared with all members of the Board and all are welcome to attend where they can.

Action: Secretariat to provide regular updates to members on the status of event organisation so they can inform us of their upcoming availability.

Action: The Secretariat will share a shortlist of priority groups with all Board members to provide feedback.

Members discussed their availability in July for a meeting with Social Security Scotland colleagues.

Action: Secretariat to compile background work on contextual info for Social Security Scotland discussion in relation to the charter expectations for people with communication needs and existing evidence.

4. Updated research questions

The subcommittee discussed and agreed a series of proposed research questions to be asked during sessions with stakeholders.

Members emphasised the importance of communicating to third sector organisations that the subcommittee is focused on the experiences of people with communication needs who have accessed Social Security Scotland services – rather than broader Department for Work and Pensions services.

5. Social security charter update

Andrew provided an update on the social security charter after discussions with Scottish Government officials.  He advised that since the charter is governed by parliamentary control under the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018, it requires approval from the full Parliament and is still subject to parliamentary approval.  Once completed, the Secretariat will make arrangements for Scottish Government officials to meet with members to discuss the new version of the charter.

6. Any other business

No further business was discussed.

Meeting closed at 11:12

Date of next meeting: TBC

Back to top Skip to content