The Scottish Information Commissioner - It's Public Knowledge
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Information about yourself or other people.

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Organisations designated by Scottish Ministers


Scottish Ministers can "designate" organisations which appear to them to "exercise functions of a public nature", but which are not listed in Schedule 1 of the Act nor are publicly owned companies.  


Designation is achieved through a statutory order under section 5 of the FOI Act. Designations might focus on the function the organisation delivers, rather than the organisation as a whole. This means you have rights to ask for information they hold about the function, but not all information held by the organisation.


You can read more about designation in the Special Report: FOI 10 Years On: Are the right organisations covered?



Designation orders made


The SSI 2016 No. 139 order designates:

  • Contractors who run privately managed prisons (e.g. HMP Addiwell and HMP Kilmarnock)
  • Providers of secure accommodation
  • Grant-aided schools
  • Independent special schools
  • Scottish Health and Innovations Ltd (SHIL).

and came into force on 1 September 2016.




The SSI 2013 No. 278 order designated leisure, sports and cultural trusts created by local authorities (e.g. Edinburgh Leisure, Inverclyde Leisure, Festival City Theatres Trust). These bodies have been subject to FOI law since 1 April 2014.

If you're unsure, ask the body itself if it is covered.  If you're still uncertain, you can contact us for advice. 



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