Wednesday, 9 December 2015

The Council's response to The Commission on Freedom of Information

North Yorkshire's response to the Independent Commission on Freedom of Information has been published.

This is the commission by which the government wants to restrict/reduce people's ability to question public authorities using The Freedom of Information Act.

1 The Council would like all internal communications to be exempt from FoI. Without the FoI in its current form, we would never have found out that there are approximately 1800 children who are missing out on an EHCP due to the Council's policy of delegating large amounts of money directly to schools (letter from Andrew Terry, former Assistant Director of Access and Inclusion)

2 It would like there to be a cost imposed on internal reviews of refused requests and submissions to the Information Commissioner's Office. I have complained to the ICO twice, one complaint was decided in my favour, requiring the Council to publish an independent review of autism provision in the County. In its finding the ICO stated that the Council had not considered the FOI correctly (both in its original refusal and in its review).

3 It would like to make it easier to refuse a request on the grounds that it would take too long by including things like redacting documents and considering exemptions when it calculates how long it would take to complete a request.

If you are interested in finding out more about making a Freedom of Information request, check out

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