The Lived Experience Board and the Scottish Government Human Rights Bill Team meet to discuss the Human Right Bill

PublishingBureauBlog, SCLD Publication

A blog by Sarah D’Agrosa

As part of the Lived Experience Board’s ongoing work on the Human Rights Bill process, the board met via Zoom with members of the Scottish Government Human Rights Bill team.

Despite a busy diary, 6 members of the team from various departments made time to meet with members of the board. The Lived Experience Board felt it was important to speak to the Bill Team directly, to highlight the real-life impact of decisions that are made at government level.

A valuable knowledge exchange

In previous meetings, board members voiced concerns that decision-makers are often unaware of how different life can be for people with learning disabilities. The Board are keen to close this gap in knowledge and so chose to treat this meeting as a knowledge exchange. The Bill Team therefore spent time explaining their own roles and answering questions about the bill process. The Board found this very interesting with one member making the valuable point that “if people with learning disabilities are going to be properly involved in decision-making, we need to understand how things work and who you are”.

Presenting solutions, not just problems

The Lived Experience Board then showed the Bill Team a pre-recorded presentation with their own audio, which highlighted several of the main points that were made in their consultation response.

The Board chose to present these points as an issue followed by a proposed solution but were clear that the involvement of people with lived experience is not simply about pointing out where the Scottish Government might be getting it wrong. Instead, using the principles of co-production and their own lived experience expertise to help decision-makers understand why a decision might not be the right one, what the real-life impact could be, and then offering a better solution.

The Lived Experience Board looks forward to seeing how the Human Rights Bill has developed at the next stage of the process.