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National Care Service Expert Legislative Advisory Group: outputs summary

Summarises the outputs from the National Care Service Expert Legislative Advisory Group (ELAG) meetings. ELAG meetings focused on the legislation around the NCS. We held these meetings in 2024.

Expert Legislative Advisory Group (ELAG) Summary of outputs

Background to ELAG

The Health, Social Care and Sport Committee's Stage 1 Report recommended setting up an Expert Legislative Advisory Group (ELAG). The Scottish Government accepted this. We set up a group of around 60 experts, including people with lived experience. They met every week for nine weeks to discuss our approach to proposed Stage 2 amendments.

We grouped the discussions by theme. This was because there were many amendments. We also needed to work quickly to meet the commitment from the lead Minister for the Bill to provide a package of Stage 2 amendments and associated documents to the lead parliamentary committee by June 2024. We set out the remit and work of the group in a terms of reference document that was agreed by the group's members.

We are grateful for the ELAG's views on these matters which have informed the Stage 2 amendments. One of the benefits of working in social care is the range of insights and opinions. These come from stakeholders, people accessing social care support, carers, and people working across the system.

Find more information about the Expert Legislative Advisory Group at, including:

  • details about the group members
  • the terms of reference
  • minutes from each meeting

We will publish this report there too.

Areas that ELAG discussed

The areas the ELAG discussed were broad and included:

  • National Care Service Board
  • National Care Service local reform
  • National Care Service principles
  • procurement
  • independent advocacy
  • The Charter of Rights and Responsibilities
  • complaints and redress
  • Anne's Law
  • children's services
  • justice social work

ELAG and Stage 2 Amendments

This is a summary of how ELAG discussions have influenced the considerations of our proposed Stage 2 amendments of the National Care Service (Scotland) Bill. We sent these amendments to the Scottish Parliament on 21 June 2024.

We knew the conversation would be wider than the Bill amendments. However, we welcomed people's views around areas that may be covered in secondary legislation, guidance or practice in the future as well as direct feedback on our policy intention for amending the primary legislation.

We have covered two main types of amendments in discussion. One was areas that changed a lot, either structurally or strategically, since the Bill was introduced at Stage1. For example, the introduction of the National Care Service Board and the approach to local reform. We go into more detail on these areas later in this report.

The other was areas where proposed amendments are more detailed and relate to things that were already in the Bill as introduced. For example, on complaints or principles.

In some cases, there are clear links between ELAG discussions and specific amendments. Others are more wide-reaching and have a broader impact on several areas. These need a full read of the package to understand their influence.

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