Equalities and diversity

We are committed to equality of opportunity and a culture that respects individuality.

The Equality Act 2010 and Scottish specific equality duties provide a clear planning and reporting framework to help us achieve this.

Our equality outcomes for 2023-2026

  1.  Create the conditions to narrow the gender, disability and ethnicity pay gaps.
  2.  Gather and use equality data to inform our policies and improve our services.
  3.  Gather and use equality data to advise Ministers as part of our advice on legal aid reform and work to monitor availability and accessibility of legal services.
  4.  Make key information about our work and legal aid accessible to those who need our help.

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Our new Equality Outcomes Plan 2023-26 provides an overview of the work that we are going to undertake to achieve our outcomes and how we will measure the impact on relevant equality groups.

The plan is aligned to our new corporate plan and it contributes to our vision, mission, purpose and corporate objectives.

We want to help people access the legal support they need and empower our people to shape and deliver a legal aid system that supports a just, safe and resilient Scotland.

To find out more about our previous equality work, you can read our Equality Outcomes Progess Final Update 2021-23 in the Related information section below.

Equality Outcomes Reporting

Equality Impact Assessments (EqIAs)

Transparency in our decision making is supported by our equality impact assessment (EqIA) process.

Our approach to this ensures we consider the impact of new and current policies or projects on protected equality groups.

It also helps us meet the general public sector equality duty to have due regard to the need to:

  • Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation.
  • Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not.
  • Foster good relations between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not.

Completed EqIAs: 2024

File Type Size
EqIA Office Standards Policy 264 KB | 7 March 2024 PDF 264 KB
EqIA Research Function 209 KB | 3 May 2024 PDF 209 KB
EqIA Form of A&A applications to solicitors 290 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 290 KB
EqIA A&A and matters of Scots law (childrens) 197 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 197 KB
EqIA A&A and matters of Scots law (civil) 190 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 190 KB
EqIA A&A application format 187 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 187 KB
EqIA A&A and advice on same matters (civil and childrens) 201 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 201 KB
EqIA A&A and advice on the same matter (criminal) 186 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 186 KB
EqIA A&A and distinct matters (childrens) 191 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 191 KB
EqIA A&A and distinct matters (civil) 239 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 239 KB
EqIA A&A and distinct matters (criminal) 186 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 186 KB
EqIA A&A and matter of Scots law (criminal) 156 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 156 KB
EqIA A&A assessment of grant validity 273 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 273 KB
EqIA A&A increases in authorised expenditure 258 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 258 KB
EqIA Childrens ABWOR merits test 240 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 240 KB
EqIA Civil ABWOR merits tests 268 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 268 KB
EqIA Criminal ABWOR merits test in restoration of driving license cases 205 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 205 KB
EqIA Notification of A&A grants to SLAB 167 KB | 25 June 2024 PDF 167 KB

Previous years' EqIAs

Completed EqIAs: 2021

File Type Size
EqIA Systems Letters PDF 502 KB
EqIA IoJ summary proceedings PDF 405 KB
EqIA Section 31 PDF 314 KB
EqIA Covid-19 operational change PDF 365 KB
EqIA Online Form 2 PDF 544 KB
EqIA Data Gathering PDF 276 KB

Completed EQIAs: Pre 2020

Legal aid applicant equality data

We seek to collect equality monitoring data on applicants to help with our strategic development and for routine monitoring of our decision-making.

We publish the information we collect in line with our value of transparency.

Criminal Justice Disability Project (CJDP)

A Criminal Justice Disability Project (CJDP) was set up by the Justice Board to promote and enable accessibility of service across the criminal justice sector in Scotland for people with disabilities.

In 2013, the Justice Board within the Scottish Government asked its Equality Diversity Sub Group to address the contents of three reports:

  • Justice Disability Steering Group report – Capability Scotland 2009
  • Hidden in Plain Sight report – EHRC – 2011
  • Out in the Open Report – EHRC – 2012.

The Sub Group created a project team to take this work forward and also address the actions arising from the Keys to Life report from SOLD (Supporting Offenders with Learning Disabilities) and the recommendations arising from the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

The member organisations published a final report of the CJDP in June 2018.

A large print version is also available or you can view a BSL version of the Executive Summary.

Reporting on the Gender Representation Objective

The intention of the Gender Representation on Public Boards (Scotland) Act 2018 is to make provision about gender representation on boards of Scottish public authorities.

Legislation is just one measure the government is taking towards a more equal society in Scotland and it is vital that work to ensure participation and representation of women from diverse backgrounds and with intersecting identities creates lasting changes to cultures and the structures.

The “gender representation objective” for a public board is that it has 50% of non-executive members who are women.

File Type Size
Report on gender objective May 2020 - April 2021 198 KB | 23 January 2023 PDF 198 KB

Contact us

We are keen to hear your views about:

  • The priorities we have identified.
  • How you think our policies or functions impact on equality.

Please provide feedback or let us know if you would like to get involved in our equality work by contacting our Corporate Policy Officer (Equalities) using the details below:

Direct dial: 0131 240 1981
Email: equalities@slab.org.uk