Elections Guidance and Referendum Advice

Elections Guidance and Referendum Advice for civil servants and staff in public bodies

All elections (including by-elections) and referendums have some impact on how civil servants and staff in public bodies go about their work. The extent of this impact - and the precise protocols which officials are required to follow - vary depending on the type of election or referendum.

At all times, civil servants must follow the Civil Service Code principles of objectivity and impartiality. Particular consideration should be given to these requirements during pre-election or pre-referendum periods. Ahead of any election or referendum, staff should take the time to familiarise themselves with the appropriate guidance.

Referendum Advice

Approaching the Referendum: Supporting Ministers in Scotland - good practice advice
for civil servants and staff in public bodies ahead of the independence referendum in 2014

The Scottish Government is committed to holding a referendum on independence on September 18, 2014.  An advice note has been prepared for civil servants and staff in Scottish devolved public bodies to provide a point of reference in handling issues associated with constitutional reform, including the referendum on independence. The note re-affirms the core values set out in the Civil Service Code and Scottish Ministerial Code and sets out some practical guidelines to help officials go about their business during the coming period.

Referendum Advice Note

Downloadable document:

Title:Advice and guidance for civil servants
Description:Advice and guidance
File:Approaching the Referendum - Supporting Ministers in Scotland - Good Practice Advice in the Run-Up to the Referendum on Independence (first published 28 May 2012; updated 26 November 2013 and 30 May 2014) [PDF, 181.2 kb: 30 May 2014]
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