Presentation on theme: "Chief Inspector Donald Thomson ACPOS FOI Coordinator Policing, the Public Interest and FOI."— Presentation transcript:
Chief Inspector Donald Thomson ACPOS FOI Coordinator Policing, the Public Interest and FOI
Police (Scotland) Act 1967 Section 15 The chief constable of a police force shall before 31st May in each year submit to the police authority a general report in writing on the policing, during the year ended on 31 st December last preceding, of the area for which the force is maintained, and shall send a copy of the report ……..
Police (Scotland) Act 1967 Section 47 (1)The chief constable of a police force shall, at such times and in such form as the Secretary of State may direct, transmit to the Secretary of State and to the police authority a statement with respect to the police area for which the force is maintained, showing for the year to 31st December last preceding- [Criminal statistics] (2) The Secretary of State shall cause a consolidated and classified abstract of the reports mentioned in subsection (1) of this section to be prepared and laid before Parliament and shall cause a copy of such abstract to be sent to each police authority. (3) To enable a chief constable to perform the duty imposed on him by subsection (1) of this section … he shall keep, and maintain up to date at all times, sufficient records of all the matters specified in the said subsection
The Central Referral Unit Joint ACPOS/ACPO initiative Promotes best practice and ensures corporacy Obtains specialist subject advice Provides telephone support. Provides National FOI Training Interacts with stakeholders. Assists with appeals and tribunals Protects the service from misuse of the act
Demand on Forces
The costs (£450k x 2) + 25% (20000 x £600)x 10% = £1m +
The Central Referral Process
Commonly used exemptions Section 31(1) - National Security Section 34 - Investigations Section 35 - Law Enforcement Section 39(1) - Health & Safety Section 38 - Personal Information
Section 18 - NCND Where, if information existed and was held by a Scottish public authority, the authority could give a refusal notice under section 16(1) on the basis that the information was exempt information by virtue of any of sections 28 to 35, 39(1) or 41 but the authority considers that to reveal whether the information exists or is so held would be contrary to the public interest, it may (whether or not the information does exist and is held by it) give the applicant a refusal notice by virtue of this section.
Section 18 – why no S38 link? Under FOI please tell me how many convictions Fred Smith has and what they are for……….. Section 16 notice – confirms information held but exempt Section 17 notice – confirms no information held Section 18 (if available) would not shed any light on the subject … there is no presumption in favour of the release of personal data under the general obligation that FOISA lays down………The guiding principle is the protection of the fundamental rights and freedoms of persons, and in particular their right to privacy with respect to the processing of personal data … Common Services Agency v Scottish Information Commissioner  1 WLR 1550