Scotland Office

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland supports the Secretary of State in promoting the best interests of Scotland within a stronger United Kingdom. It ensures Scottish interests are fully and effectively represented at the heart of the UK Government, and the UK Government’s responsibilities are fully and effectively represented in Scotland.



Secretary of State

 Portrait

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland

Labour
Lord Falconer of Thoroton (LAB - Life peer)
Shadow Advocate-General for Scotland
Shadow Ministers / Spokeperson
Liberal Democrat
Wendy Chamberlain (LDEM - North East Fife)
Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Scotland)

Labour
Ian Murray (LAB - Edinburgh South)
Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland
Lord Falconer of Thoroton (LAB - Life peer)
Shadow Spokesperson (Scotland)

Liberal Democrat
Lord Bruce of Bennachie (LDEM - Life peer)
Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Scotland)

Scottish National Party
Mhairi Black (SNP - Paisley and Renfrewshire South)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Scotland)
Junior Shadow Ministers / Deputy Spokesperson
Labour
Chris Elmore (LAB - Ogmore)
Shadow Minister (Scotland)
Parliamentary Under-Secretaries of State
Lord Offord of Garvel (CON - Life peer)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
Lord Stewart of Dirleton (CON - Life peer)
Advocate General for Scotland
Iain Stewart (CON - Milton Keynes South)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
Scheduled Event
Monday 18th October 2021
14:30
Scottish Affairs Committee - Private Meeting - Select & Joint Committees
18 Oct 2021, 2:30 p.m.
Defence in Scotland
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Scheduled Event
Tuesday 19th October 2021
10:00
Scottish Affairs Committee - Private Meeting - Select & Joint Committees
19 Oct 2021, 10 a.m.

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Scheduled Event
Wednesday 3rd November 2021
11:30
Scotland Office
Oral questions - Main Chamber
3 Nov 2021, 11:30 a.m.
Scotland
Save to Calendar
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Debates
Thursday 23rd September 2021
Education
Ministerial Corrections
Select Committee Docs
Wednesday 6th October 2021
00:00
Call for Evidence
Call For Evidence
Select Committee Inquiry
Friday 30th July 2021
Defence in Scotland

Defence in Scotland: military personnel and estate

The Committee has launched an inquiry series into Defence in Scotland. This begins …

Written Answers
Monday 20th September 2021
Ports: Scotland
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to the Answer of 8 September 2021 to Question 903227 on …
Secondary Legislation
Tuesday 7th September 2021
Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 (Disability Assistance for Children and Young People) (Consequential Modifications) (No. 2) Order 2021
The Disability Assistance for Children and Young People (Scotland) Regulations 2021 (S.S.I. 2021/174) made under section 31 of the Social …
Bills
Thursday 28th May 2015
Dept. Publications
Tuesday 12th October 2021
15:23
Treaty
None available

Scotland Office Commons Appearances

Oral Answers to Questions is a regularly scheduled appearance where the Secretary of State and junior minister will answer at the Dispatch Box questions from backbench MPs

Other Commons Chamber appearances can be:
  • Urgent Questions where the Speaker has selected a question to which a Minister must reply that day
  • Adjornment Debates a 30 minute debate attended by a Minister that concludes the day in Parliament.
  • Oral Statements informing the Commons of a significant development, where backbench MP's can then question the Minister making the statement.

Westminster Hall debates are performed in response to backbench MPs or e-petitions asking for a Minister to address a detailed issue

Written Statements are made when a current event is not sufficiently significant to require an Oral Statement, but the House is required to be informed.

Most Recent Commons Appearances by Category
May. 20
Oral Questions
Sep. 21
Westminster Hall
Mar. 17
Adjournment Debate
View All Scotland Office Commons Contibutions

Bills currently before Parliament

Scotland Office does not have Bills currently before Parliament


Acts of Parliament created in the 2019 Parliament

Scotland Office has not passed any Acts during the 2019 Parliament

Scotland Office - Secondary Legislation

The Disability Assistance for Children and Young People (Scotland) Regulations 2021 (S.S.I. 2021/174) made under section 31 of the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 (asp 9) introduce arrangements for the payment of disability assistance for children and young people in the form of a “child disability payment”. The child disability payment replaces the disability living allowance for children residing in Scotland.
The Disability Assistance for Children and Young People (Scotland) Regulations 2021 (S.S.I. 2021/174) made under section 31 of the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 (asp 9) introduce arrangements for the payment of disability assistance for children and young people in the form of a “child disability payment”. The child disability payment replaces the disability living allowance for children residing in Scotland.
View All Scotland Office Secondary Legislation

Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Trending Petitions
Petition Open
34 Signatures
(1 in the last 7 days)
Petitions with most signatures
Petition Open
34 Signatures
(1 in the last 7 days)
Scotland Office has not participated in any petition debates
View All Scotland Office Petitions

Departmental Select Committee

Scottish Affairs Committee

Commons Select Committees are a formally established cross-party group of backbench MPs tasked with holding a Government department to account.

At any time there will be number of ongoing investigations into the work of the Department, or issues which fall within the oversight of the Department. Witnesses can be summoned from within the Government and outside to assist in these inquiries.

Select Committee findings are reported to the Commons, printed, and published on the Parliament website. The government then usually has 60 days to reply to the committee's recommendations.


11 Members of the Scottish Affairs Committee
Pete Wishart Portrait
Pete Wishart (Scottish National Party - Perth and North Perthshire)
Scottish Affairs Committee Chair since 27th January 2020
Liz Twist Portrait
Liz Twist (Labour - Blaydon)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
John Lamont Portrait
John Lamont (Conservative - Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Sally-Ann Hart Portrait
Sally-Ann Hart (Conservative - Hastings and Rye)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Jon Cruddas Portrait
Jon Cruddas (Labour - Dagenham and Rainham)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Alberto Costa Portrait
Alberto Costa (Conservative - South Leicestershire)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Wendy Chamberlain Portrait
Wendy Chamberlain (Liberal Democrat - North East Fife)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Deidre Brock Portrait
Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Andrew Bowie Portrait
Andrew Bowie (Conservative - West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Mhairi Black Portrait
Mhairi Black (Scottish National Party - Paisley and Renfrewshire South)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 4th May 2020
Douglas Ross Portrait
Douglas Ross (Conservative - Moray)
Scottish Affairs Committee Member since 15th June 2020
Scottish Affairs Committee: Upcoming Events
Scottish Affairs Committee - Private Meeting
Defence in Scotland
18 Oct 2021, 2:30 p.m.
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Scottish Affairs Committee - Private Meeting
19 Oct 2021, 10 a.m.
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50 most recent Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department

14th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to the Answer of 8 September 2021 to Question 903227 on Ports: Scotland, what additional resources have been deployed by the Border Force at Scottish ports since the Northern Ireland Protocol came into effect on 1 January 2021.

Information relating to the wider staffing in the Home Office including Border Force, for the year 2019-20 is below:

Home Office annual report and accounts: 2019 to 2020

The Home Office Annual reports and accounts for 2020 to 2021 will be published in due course.

Border Force regularly reviews its capacity plans and resources. Redeploying and recruiting staff where necessary to help meet and maintain service standards for individual services.

Border Force is confident that resources to meet anticipated overall operational requirements are in place with Border Force recruiting sufficient additional frontline staff and continuing to build staffing levels during 2020/2021.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
9th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the compliance of the Scottish Government in respect of their actions in areas reserved under the devolution agreements.

The UK Government is committed to respecting and strengthening the devolution settlements. We engage closely with the Scottish Government on Scotland Act Orders, which were established under the Scotland Act 1998, to help manage the Scottish devolution settlement. The Scotland Act 1998 sets out mechanisms in the event of activity which may be contrary to the Scottish devolution settlement.

The UK Government engages regularly with the Scottish Government in a wide range of other areas, including on the collective challenges we face, such as our recovery from Covid-19. The UK Government reports quarterly on intergovernmental engagement and activity with the Scottish Government and other devolved administrations.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
13th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Viscount Younger of Leckie on 9 September (HL2410), what topics were covered in the 11 letters (attached to emails) that the Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland received from Scottish Ministers in relation to reserved matters; and what plans they have to publish these letters.

UK Government Ministers and Scottish Government Ministers regularly communicate on a range of matters. There is a strong public interest in allowing Ministers a private space within which to communicate, discuss and share information. Therefore, we do not routinely publish interministerial letters and we have no plans to publish these letters or their contents.

Viscount Younger of Leckie
Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip)
9th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what recent assessment he has made of the (a) effectiveness of the operation of the Sewel Convention and (b) ability of the Scottish Parliament to carry out its legislative functions on devolved matters.

Scotland’s two governments continue to work well together in line with the established practices of the Sewel Convention, a convention that has been used hundreds of times since the creation of the devolution settlement. The Scottish Government supported legislative consent motions for 19 UK Government bills in the last UK Parliamentary session.

The UK Government fully respects the devolution settlement as set out in the Scotland Act 1998, including the Scottish Parliament’s competence to legislate in respect of devolved matters.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
8th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, if he will publish the (a) properties classified as heritage assets by his Department, (b) most recent estimate of the value of those properties and (c) annual income derived from those properties.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland has no properties classified as heritage assets.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what estimate his Department has made of the amount of funding from the public purse spent by the Scottish Government on reserved areas, including (a) overseas offices, (b) the constitution and (c) work undertaken by civil servants on reserved areas in the most recent period for which figures are available.

The International Relations reservation set out in the Scotland Act 1998 is clear that the United Kingdom Government is responsible for international relations. The Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) promotes the international interests of the United Kingdom and all its constituent parts. The UK Government recognises that the devolved administrations will have an interest in international policy making in relation to devolved matters and also in obligations touching on devolved matters that the UK may agree as a result of concluding international agreements (including UN Conventions). Such work is conducted by the Scottish Government, including from a number of overseas offices, which are usually co-located with British overseas missions.

The UK Government has been very clear that our immediate responsibility must be the economic recovery from the consequences of the pandemic, supporting people back into work and building back better.

In accordance with the Statement of Funding Policy and the Scottish Fiscal Framework, the Scottish Government is not required to set out its spending decisions to the UK Parliament. The Scottish Parliament, its MSPs, the committees and independent bodies, such as Audit Scotland, scrutinise the Scottish Government’s spending decisions.

In addition, the Scottish Government published this year’s National Statistics on public spending in Scotland - Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland - on 18 August 2021, including estimates of public sector expenditure by organisation and type of spend.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what representations he has received from Scottish Government Ministers by (a) email, (b) letter and (c) other means of communication on matters which are reserved to the UK Government since August 2020.

In the time period outlined, the Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland has received 11 letters (attached to emails) from Scottish Ministers in relation to reserved matters.

The Department is unable to provide information on other means of communication.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
8th Sep 2021
What steps the Government is taking to help students attending Scottish universities to study and work overseas.

We have introduced the Turing Scheme, a UK-wide programme that will support students who wish to take up opportunities for education and training in over 150 destinations around the world. Scottish universities are on course to receive more than £8.2 million support under the scheme.

Iain Stewart
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
8th Sep 2021
What recent discussions he has had with the Scottish Government on the implementation of the Government's new Hydrogen Strategy.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy works closely with the Scottish Government and other devolved administrations on the implementation of the Hydrogen Strategy, and will continue to do so.

Iain Stewart
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
31st Aug 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on resources deployed at Scottish ports to help manage the movement of goods since the Northern Ireland Protocol came into effect on 1 January 2021.

The Secretary of State for Scotland holds regular conversations with Cabinet colleagues regarding the implications of the Northern Ireland Protocol.

This Government is unequivocal in its commitment to ensuring unfettered access for Northern Ireland goods moving to the rest of the UK and will ensure the required resources are deployed at Scottish ports.

8th Sep 2021
What recent progress the Government has made on establishing the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

From 2022, the UK Shared Prosperity Fund will target the people and places most in need, and we will publish our prospectus in due course.

This will complement work already underway on the Levelling Up Fund, Community Renewal Fund and Community Ownership Fund where applications are currently being considered.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
8th Sep 2021
What recent progress the Government has made on establishing the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

From 2022, the UK Shared Prosperity Fund will target the people and places most in need, and we will publish our prospectus in due course.

This will complement work already underway on the Levelling Up Fund, Community Renewal Fund and Community Ownership Fund where applications are currently being considered.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
18th Aug 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what projects the Government is supporting at the Hunterston PARC site in North Ayrshire as part of the Ayrshire Growth Deal.

The Hunterston Strategic Development Area is one of three projects within the Energy, Circular Economy & Environment Programme. The Hunterston investment is supported by £18 million from the UK Government. Good progress is being made and we expect to receive the Business Case by the end of the year.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what recent discussions he has had with (a) the Scottish Government and (b) social media platforms on tackling abuse online.

Scotland Office officials and officials from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) have been working closely with officials in the Devolved Administrations, including in the Scottish Government, throughout the development of proposals regarding the now published draft Online Safety Bill, and will continue to engage throughout the legislative process.

The new regulatory framework will hold platforms to account for tackling harmful content and behaviours online.



Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
7th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what mechanisms are in place to audit information provided to his Department by (a) regulatory bodies and (b) non-departmental public bodies.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland sponsors one Non-Departmental Public Body, the Boundary Commission for Scotland. The Boundary Commission for Scotland is responsible for reviews of UK Parliament constituencies in Scotland.

The relationship between the Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland and the Boundary Commission for Scotland is governed by a Memorandum of Understanding. This acknowledges the Boundary Commission for Scotland’s performance of the duties given to it by Parliament as an independent body, while following the Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland’s best practice in financial and corporate governance. The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland reports bi-annually to the department’s Audit and Risk Assurance Committee, on the sponsorship relationship.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland’s accounts include the costs of the Boundary Commission for Scotland, which are audited by the National Audit Office. The Boundary Commission for Scotland prepares an annual report, which is available on the Boundary Commission for Scotland’s website. This is in addition to progress reports, which are compiled when the Commission is undertaking a Review, and are submitted to the Speaker of the House of Commons. These progress reports are published on the Boundary Commission for Scotland’s website annually, in January.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
6th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, how many items of written correspondence from hon. Members sent to Ministers of his Department have been (a) received and (b) replied to since 1 April 2020; and how many of those responses were responded to by (i) Ministers and (ii) officials of his Department.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland (OSSS) has received 122 items of correspondence from honourable Members since 1 April 2020.

In that period, OSSS Ministers answered 104 items, OSSS officials answered five items and one item was transferred to another UK Government department. Six items of correspondence are yet to be answered.

A further six items did not require a response or were answered by way of discussion.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
5th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to the Answers of 9 and 16 June and 1 July 2021 to Questions 10486, 13125 and 21266 on Energy: Scotland, for what reason he will not publish the information referred to in advance of quarterly reporting; and if he will make a statement.

I refer the honourable Gentleman to my answer of 1 July to question 21266, to my answer of 16 June to question 13125 and to my answer of 9 June to question 10486. Information about Ministerial meetings with external organisations for the period January to March 2021 is due to be published on gov.uk on 15 July 2021.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
30th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of his Department's energy usage in (a) 2019, (b) 2020 and (c) 2021.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland incurred the following actual costs for the financial years listed:

Financial Year

Cost

2018-19

£17,432

2019-20

£27,220

2020-21

£15,765

These costs relate to our Edinburgh office. The energy charges for Dover House, our London office, are not separately identifiable and are part of the service charge. In 2021, our Edinburgh office relocated to the new UK Government hub in Edinburgh. Energy charges are now similarly part of the service charge.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
1st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what his policy is on his Department's rates of recycling of plastic, paper, metal and other products; and if he will make a statement.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland (OSSS) is committed to minimising the impact we have on our environment and supporting the UK Government’s Net-Zero commitment.

The OSSS does not own and is not the sole occupant of either of its buildings in London or Edinburgh. Dover House in London is leased from the Government Property Agency and Queen Elizabeth House in Edinburgh is leased from HMRC. The OSSS does promote and adhere to the recycling policies in both buildings.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
28th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, how many Freedom of Information requests have been referred by his Department for advice on handling to the Cabinet Office’s clearing house for Freedom of Information requests in each year since 2016.

The Office has referred Freedom of Information requests for advice on handling to the Cabinet Office’s clearing house for Freedom of Information requests since 2016, in accordance with the referral criteria which are available at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cabinet-office-and-freedom-of-information.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
23rd Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to the Answer of 16 June 2020 to Question 13125 on Energy: Scotland, what his planned timescale is for the publication of details of meetings he has had with representatives of Scottish renewables companies in 2021; and what discussion she has had with representatives of Scottish renewables ahead of COP26.

I refer the Hon Gentleman to my answers of 9 and 16 June to questions 10486 and 13125 respectively. The government publishes details of Ministerial meetings with external organisations on a quarterly basis. Information for the period January to March 2021 is due to be published on gov.uk in July 2021.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
23rd Jun 2021
What assessment he has made of the effectiveness of economic support for Scottish businesses during the covid-19 outbreak.

The UK Government is providing continued UK-wide support and security to manage the ongoing impacts of Covid-19.

One in three jobs in Scotland has been supported by the UK Government’s unprecedented employment support package.

Scottish businesses have benefited from more than £3.4 billion of loans and support driven by UK Government schemes.

We have also provided a much needed boost to Scottish tourism and hospitality with our UK-wide VAT reduction.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
23rd Jun 2021
What assessment his Department has made of the effect of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement on Scottish (a) importers and (b) exporters.

We have agreed a deal with the EU which delivers for Scotland and the rest of the UK.

Our deal provides Scottish businesses with exceptional access to the EU’s market - It is the first time the EU has ever agreed a zero tariffs, zero quota deal.

This provides the right conditions for the Scottish economy to recover from the Covid pandemic and flourish in the future.

14th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, whether his Department operates a red, amber and green rating system for categorising Freedom of Information requests according to their presentational sensitivity.

My Department does not operate a red, amber, and green rating system for categorising Freedom of Information requests according to their presentational sensitivity.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
11th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what assessment they have made of the potential (a) threats and (b) opportunities of artificial intelligence in respect of their Department’s responsibilities.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland has made no assessment of artificial intelligence in respect of its responsibilities.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
10th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, to what extent their Department makes use of artificial intelligence in the implementation of its policies; and how much was spent from their Department’s budget on artificial intelligence in each of the last three years.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland does not use artificial intelligence in the implementation of its policies and has not incurred any such expenditure.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
9th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to the Answer o f9 June 2021 to Question 10486 on Energy: Scotland, if he will list the Scottish Renewable companies he has met in the last 12 months and the dates of those meetings.

I refer the Hon. Member for Kilmarnock and Loudoun to the answer of 9 June 2021 to Question 10486. Ministerial meetings with external organisations are published on gov.uk.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
4th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what discussions has he had with representatives of (a) Scottish Renewable Energy Companies and (b) the Chancellor of the Exchequer on the potential merits of an Innovation Power Purchase Agreement to stimulate growth of marine and tidal projects.

Ministers of the Office for the Secretary of State for Scotland meet regularly with representatives of Scottish renewables companies to discuss a range of energy matters of importance to Scotland. Policy on marine and tidal projects is a matter for the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
25th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what representations have been made by the Scottish Government to amend the Scotland Act 1998 in respect of the role of the Lord Advocate.

As the Secretary of State for Scotland, I have responsibility for the Scotland Act and I am the custodian of the Scottish devolution settlement. The role of the Lord Advocate is protected in the Scotland Act 1998. I have not received any representations from the Scottish Government to amend it in this way.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
19th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what recent assessment he has made of the levels of co-operation of (a) the Scottish Government and (b) Transport Scotland in providing technical data to the Union Connectivity Review.

Since the independent Union Connectivity Review (UCR) began in November 2020 it has published a call for evidence, which attracted 145 responses and has led sector specific roundtables with around 100 organisations. The UCR did not receive a submission from the Scottish Government or Transport Scotland. Sir Peter Hendy, who is leading the review, has spoken to Ministers in the Scottish and Welsh Governments and the Northern Ireland Executive.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, how much his Department spent on social media advertising in each month since October 2020; and on which platforms that money was spent.

The Office delivers public information campaigns in Scotland to communicate important messages to the public, such as national awareness campaigns and policy initiatives. Total Office expenditure on digital campaigns from 1 October 2020 to 24 March 2021 was as follows:

Twitter

Facebook & Instagram

LinkedIn

Total Expenditure

October 2020

£ 1,512.90

£ 2,730.61

£ 507.54

£4,751.05

November 2020

£ 2,141.13

£ 5,202.38

£ -

£7,343.51

December 2020

£ 2,643.06

£ 4,622.46

£ -

£7,265.52

January 2021

£ 790.86

£ 8,238.15

£ -

£9,029.01

February 2021

£ 2,722.62

£ 7,296.12

£ -

£10,018.74

March 2021*

£ 2,811.22

£ 5,868.42

£ -

£8,679.64

* The Office has not run any public information campaigns since 24 March 2021, in line with pre-election requirements.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what the cost of his Department's communication team was in (a) 2019-20 and (b) 2020-21.

The Communications team cost for 2019-20 was £870,159, and for 2020-21 was £906,177.

The Office is resourced to enable effective engagement and communication with the public and organisations across Scotland. These functions have been essential to supporting the UK’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and providing information to people and businesses as we left the EU.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what role his Department has played with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in establishing the £100 million fishing support fund.

My officials and I are in regular contact with counterparts from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on a range of issues of importance to the seafood sector in Scotland, including the establishment of the UK Government's new £100 million support fund. We will provide further information after 6 May.

28th Apr 2021
What recent discussions he has had with the Scottish Government on the implementation of the covid-19 vaccination programme in Scotland.

UK Government Ministers are in frequent contact with Scottish Government Ministers on all aspects of the response to Covid-19, including the vaccination programme.

The UK Government's vaccine taskforce has successfully procured the vaccines we need and ensured they are available to all across the whole of the UK.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
28th Apr 2021
What assessment he has made of the effect on people over the age of 75 in Scotland of the removal of free TV licences.

The Government remains deeply disappointed with the BBC’s decision to restrict the over-75 licence fee concession to only those in receipt of pension credit.

We recognise the value of free TV licences for over-75s in Scotland and the rest of the UK and believe they should be funded by the BBC.

28th Apr 2021
What recent discussions he has had with (a) Cabinet colleagues and (b) the Scottish Government on preparations for COP26 in Glasgow.

Scotland Office Ministers are in regular discussions with Ministerial colleagues and the Scottish Government on the preparations for COP26 in Glasgow.

My Rt hon Friend the Secretary of State met the COP President last month and Scotland Office Ministers attended the COP26 Devolved Administration Ministerial Group.

15th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on using the NHS Test and Trace database system.

I discuss a wide range of issues relating to the Coronavirus pandemic with Cabinet colleagues on a regular basis. However, The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland is not the lead UK Government Department responsible for the NHS Test and Trace database system policy. The lead department is the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC).

Public Health is a devolved matter in Scotland. NHS Scotland has created NHS Test and Protect and supports the Scottish Government’s test, trace, isolate and support strategy.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
15th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, whether his Department plans to use the NHS Test and Trace database system.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland is not the lead UK Government Department responsible for the NHS Test and Trace database system and does not therefore develop policy relating to the use of the system. The lead department is the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC).

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
15th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, whether he has allocated any financial or other resources from his Department's budget to investigate potential future uses by his Department of the NHS Test and Trace database system.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland is not the lead UK Government Department responsible for the NHS Test and Trace database system, therefore does not allocate resources, including financial resources to investigate future uses of the system. The lead department is the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC).

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
23rd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, following on from the Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) review by the Care Quality Commission in England, which found 508 cases where decisions had been taken which may have broken the Equality Act 2010, if he will order a similar review into DNACPR decisions in Scotland.

DHSC has been clear that blanket application of DNACPRs is unacceptable and that standards and quality of care should be maintained even in pressurised circumstances.

It is important that we work across the health and care system, throughout the whole of the UK, to build understanding of the role DNACPR decisions play in high quality personalised care. Any advanced care decisions, including DNACPRs, must be discussed with patients and families, who must be given all the relevant information and any critical decisions must be made on an individual basis.

As Public Health is a devolved matter, I would call on the incoming Scottish Government, following Scottish elections in May, to listen to patients, families and care organisations who have serious concerns about the use of DNACPR orders during the covid pandemic.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
10th Mar 2021
What discussions he has had with (a) Cabinet colleagues and (b) the Scottish Government on preparations for COP26 in Glasgow.

The Scotland Office has regular discussions with other UK Government Departments and the Scottish Government regarding COP26 and I am confident that preparations are in good shape.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
10th Mar 2021
If he will have discussions with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on ensuring that public sector broadcasters uphold obligations on impartiality during election periods in Scotland.

The Secretary of State for Scotland has raised concerns previously about BBC Scotland broadcasting the First Minister's daily press briefing, which so frequently is about SNP politics rather than public health information. In the run-up to the Holyrood elections, BBC Scotland must look carefully at its legal requirement for impartiality.

Iain Stewart
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
10th Mar 2021
What recent steps his Department has taken to support the Scottish hospitality sector.

We are continuing to support the Scottish hospitality sector through a combination of UK Government initiatives.

This includes the now extended VAT reduction for the sector and support for businesses, such as business loans, which includes the new Recovery Loan Scheme.

This is in addition to the extended furlough scheme and grants for the self-employed.

Iain Stewart
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
10th Mar 2021
What assessment he has made with Cabinet colleagues of the effect on creative workers in Scotland of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement.

This Government understands that the cultural and creative sectors rely on the ability to move people across borders quickly, simply, and with minimal cost and administration.

We are now working urgently across Government and in collaboration with the music and wider creative industries, including through a new working group which includes the devolved administrations, to help address these issues.

Iain Stewart
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
10th Mar 2021
What steps he is taking with Cabinet colleagues to ensure the adequacy of telecommunications infrastructure in rural areas of Scotland.

The Scottish economy continues to gain hugely from the UK Government’s ambitious investments in data connectivity.

I want to see every area of Scotland, including the constituency of Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, be able to take full advantage of the digital technology available.

Iain Stewart
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Scotland Office)
10th Mar 2021
What recent discussions he has had with Scottish exporters on the effect of the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement on their ability to trade.

This year my Ministerial colleagues and I have had an unprecedented number of meetings with Scottish exporters and their sectoral representative organisations.

On issues like supporting seafood, this Government has held extensive consultations with the industry.

We have been working tirelessly to resolve issues around the new arrangements for getting our world class seafood to customers in Europe.

2nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, how much the (a) Union Unit and (b) Union Taskforce spent on communications, including staffing costs, in each financial year since 2010-11; and how much is budgeted for that purpose for each of those groups for 2021-22.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland is not responsible for the funding of either a ‘Union Unit’ or ‘Union Taskforce’.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
2nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what discussions he has had with relevant stakeholders on the workings of the Scottish devolved institutions.

As the Secretary of State for Scotland, I have responsibility for the Scotland Act and I am the custodian of the Scottish devolution settlement. In that role, I hold regular meetings with a range of external stakeholders on a variety of subjects and listen to their views. I regularly feed these views back to my ministerial colleagues where appropriate.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
19th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what discussions he has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on the potential competitive disadvantage faced by Scotch Whisky and other spirits produced in Scotland that are taxed higher per unit of alcohol than other alcohol categories.

The Government remains clear in its support for Scotch Whisky, and other Scottish spirits, and we have taken action to this end. The freeze in spirits duty at Budget 2020 and at five of the six budgets before that ensured the price of a typical bottle of Scotch is £1.54 lower than it otherwise would have been since ending the spirits duty escalator in 2014.

More broadly, the Government announced at the 2020 Budget it would review the alcohol duty system in the round. A call for evidence concluded in November and further announcements will be made in due course.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland