Archive for the 'freedom of information' Category

Government loses abortion battle – BBC News

“The Department of Health has lost a court battle to keep secret some details on abortion statistics.”

Full story

BBC News, 20th April 2011

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Ruling on late abortion figures challenged in court – Daily Telegraph

“The Department of Health is making a High Court challenge today to stop figures being published on the number of late abortions on ‘less than perfect’ foetuses with physical abnormalities, including cleft palate and club foot.”

Full story

Daily Telegraph, 18th April 2011

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

First details of Commission data protection action against UK are revealed – OUT-LAW.com

“Details of the European Commission’s objections to the Data Protection Act (DPA) have been revealed for the first time. A document has been published outlining why the Commission thinks the DPA fails to implement the EU’s Data Protection Directive.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 22nd February 2011

Source: www.out-law.com

Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police v Information Commissioner – WLR Daily

Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police v Information Commissioner [2011] EWHC 44 (Admin); [2011] WLR (D) 19

“In estimating whether the cost of complying with a request for information would exceed the appropriate limit for the purposes of claiming exemption from the obligation to comply in reliance on section 12 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, a public authority was not permitted by regulation 4 of the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004 to take account of time which it expected to spend in redacting exempt information from relevant documents before disclosing them to the applicant.”

WLR Daily, 27th January 2011

Source: www.lawreports.co.uk

Please note once a case has been fully reported in one of the ICLR series the corresponding WLR Daily summary is removed.

Government creates data publishing body

“A single body will be put in charge of how data generated by publicly owned bodies is used, the Government has said. It has outlined plans for a Public Data Corporation (PDC) to manage data and license it to others.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 17th January 2011

Source: www.out-law.com

Regina (Guardian News and Media Ltd) v City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court – WLR Daily

Regina (Guardian News and Media Ltd) v City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court [2010] EWHC 3376 (Admin); [2011] WLR (D) 349

“Art 10 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms did not alter the settled law that the principle of open justice in criminal proceedings did not extend to a right for the press or the public to inspect documents or other exhibits placed before a court during such proceedings, or require the Criminal Procedure Rules 2010 to be interpreted as conferring any right of inspection of written evidence.”

WLR Daily, 12th January 2011

Source: www.lawreports.co.uk

Please note once a case has been fully reported in one of the ICLR series the corresponding WLR Daily summary is removed.

Opening up public bodies to public scrutiny – Ministry of Justice

“New plans to extend the scope of the Freedom of Information Act (FOI) to open up government and other bodies to public scrutiny, were unveiled by the Ministry of Justice today.”

Full story

Ministry of Justice, 7th January 2011

Source: www.justice.gov.uk

Royal Family granted new right of secrecy – The Independent

“The Royal Family is to be granted absolute protection from public scrutiny in a controversial legal reform designed to draw a veil of secrecy over the affairs of the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William.”

Full story

The Independent, 8th January 2011

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Freedom of Information could cover hundreds more bodies – BBC News

“Hundreds more organisations could be made subject to Freedom of Information laws, Deputy PM Nick Clegg is to say.”

Full story

BBC News, 6th January 2011

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Tribunal orders Government department to release IT contract details – OUT-LAW.com

“The Information Tribunal has ordered a Government department to publish most of the till-now withheld details of a major IT contract after ruling that the public interest was served better by disclosure than secrecy.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 24th September 2010

Source: www.out-law.com

Prince Charles’s letters to ministers stay secret as appeal is adjourned – The Guardian

“Freedom of information hearing delayed until next year for reasons panel cannot ‘go into.’ ”

Full story

The Guardian, 16th September 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Royal pressure ‘led to FoI ban on disclosure of lobbying by Charles’ – The Guardian

“Guardian to go to tribunal to gain access to letters to ministers, while Act amendments may mean 20-year block on letters.”

Full story

The Guardian, 13th September 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Plans to extend freedom of information – Ministry of Justice

“The Government wants to extend the scope of the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act to increase transparency.”

Full press release

Ministry of Justice, 7th September 2010

Source: www.justice.gov.uk

Revealed: brutal guide to punishing jailed youths – The Observer

“Shocking details of techniques used to inflict pain deliberately on children in privately run jails have been revealed for the first time in a government document obtained by the Observer.”

Full story

The Observer, 18th July 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Post-It notes and the end of written history – BBC News

“The new coalition government is currently deciding when the legislation, which follows a review of secrecy rules by a committee chaired by Daily Mail editor Paul Dacre, will come into effect.”

Full story

BBC News, 1st July 2010

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

FOI does not require disclosure of BBC report, rules Court of Appeal – OUT-LAW.com

“The BBC does not have to publish a report into its Middle East coverage, the Court of Appeal has ruled. A Freedom of Information (FOI) Act exemption for journalism applies to material even if it is held for other purposes, said the Court.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 25th June 2010

Source: www.out-law.com

British Broadcasting Corporation and another v Sugar (No 2) – WLR Daily

British Broadcasting Corporation and another v Sugar (No 2) [2010] EWCA Civ 715; [2010] WLR (D) 157

“Once it was established that information, requested under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, was held by the BBC as a public authority for the purposes of journalism (a word that was to be given its natural meaning), it was effectively exempt from production under the 2000 Act, even if the information was also held by the authority for other purposes.”

WLR Daily, 24th June 2010

Source: www.lawreports.co.uk

Please note once a case has been fully reported in one of the ICLR series the corresponding WLR Daily summary is removed.

One in four FOI requests turned down by public bodies – Daily Telegraph

“Almost one in four Freedom of Information requests are being turned down by Government departments and public bodies, and the trend is getting worse.”

Full story

Daily Telegraph, 31st May 2010

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

Government outlines plans on privacy and surveillance – OUT-LAW.com

“The new Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition Government said that it will beef up freedom of information law and reduce the number of people whose details are held on the Government’s DNA database.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 13th May 2010

Source: www.out-law.com

Council breached information law – BBC News

“A council has been told it breached the Freedom of Information Act by failing to provide an AM details about the cost of employing education consultants.”

Full story

BBC News, 14th May 2010

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Greater transparency in Freedom of Information – Ministry of Justice

“The Freedom of Information Act will be extended to cover four more public bodies and increase the public’s right to access information, Justice Minister Michael Wills announced today.”

Full story

Ministry of Justice, 30th March 2010

Source: www.justice.gov.uk

R (One Search Direct Holdings Ltd (trading as One Search Direct)) v York City Council – WLR Daily

R (One Search Direct Holdings Ltd (trading as One Search Direct)) v York City Council [2010] EWHC 590 (Admin); [2010] WLR (D) 87

“In failing to provide access to unrefined information, the council was not acting in a way that was contrary to the Government’s intention not to impose an obligation on authorities to allow such access, nor to the aims and purposes of the statutory provisions, including the subsidiary legislation made by the Secretary of State.”

WLR Daily, 23rd March 2010

Source: www.lawreports.co.uk

Please note that once a case has been fully reported in one of the ICLR series the corresponding WLR Daily summary is removed.

Animal rights activist using FOI laws to target universities – The Guardian

“A convicted animal rights activist is using freedom of information laws to force universities to reveal details of their animal experiments, raising fears that scientists involved could suffer renewed intimidation.”

Full story

The Guardian, 15th March 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

30-year rule on release of secret government papers cut to 20 years – The Guardian

“Secret government papers are to be released after a delay of 20 years in a change from the current 30-year rule, the Ministry of Justice announced yesterday (25 February).”

Full story

The Guardian, 26th February 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Miners’ solicitors bombard government with FoI requests – Law Society’s Gazette

“The government has been overloaded with freedom of information (FoI) requests made by solicitors acting for former coal miners ahead of the first coordinated negligence action for alleged under-settlement of government compensation claims.”

Full story

Law Society’s Gazette, 18th February 2010

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Heathrow airport expansion e-mails investigated – BBC News

“The Department for Transport (DfT) is facing an ‘intensive investigation’ over claims e-mails about the expansion of Heathrow Airport were deleted.”

Full story

BBC News, 7th February 2010

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

How to appeal an ICO decision: new guidance published – OUT-LAW.com

“The new body which has taken over the power to rule on appeals from decisions of the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has issued guidance on how to conduct an appeal.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 1st February 2010

Source: www.out-law.com

Tories evasive over Ashcroft tax status, says watchdog – The Guardian

“The Conservative leadership is today accused of being ‘evasive and obfuscatory’ over the tax status of Lord Ashcroft, the party’s deputy chairman and biggest donor, in a ruling by the information commissioner that sharply criticises the secrecy over where he is resident for tax purposes.”

Full story

The Guardian, 1st February 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

John Terry case sparks government concern over super-injunctions – The Guardian

“The government is consulting the media and the judiciary after becoming ‘very concerned’ that super-injunctions, such as the double gagging order which was obtained by the England football captain John Terry but lifted last week, are being used too often.”

Full story

The Guardian, 31st January 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Government ordered to reveal Iraq legal advice – The Independent

“The Government’s most senior legal advisers broke the law by refusing to tell The Independent who was given crucial advice about the treatment of prisoners during the war in Iraq, the Freedom of Information watchdog has ruled.”

Full story

The Independent, 1st February 2010

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Climate e-mails row university ‘breached data laws’ – BBC News

“A university unit involved in a row over stolen e-mails on climate research breached rules by withholding data, the Information Commissioner’s Office says.”

Full story

BBC News, 28th January 2010

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Kennedy v Information Commissioner and another – WLR Daily

Kennedy v Information Commissioner and another [2010] WLR (D) 6

“The Information Tribunal was correct in holding that the wording of s 32(2) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 had a very wide scope. There was no right under the 2000 Act to disclosure of documents held by public authorities which had been placed in the custody of or created by a person conducting an inquiry or arbitration for the purposes of the inquiry or arbitration, even after the inquiry or arbitration had concluded; the documents fell under the absolute exemptions set out in s 32(2) of the Act, regardless of their content and the consequences of their disclosure, and notwithstanding the public interest in their disclosure. However, the exemption could be waived and the information could be released by inquiries and arbitrators when the public interest required it.”

WLR Daily, 22nd January 2010

Source: www.lawreports.co.uk

Please note once a case has been fully reported in one of the ICLR series the corresponding WLR Daily summary is removed.

Information Tribunal is abolished as new service takes charge – OUT-LAW.com

“The appeals process for freedom of information and data protection cases changes from today as the previous structure is absorbed into a wider tribunals service.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 18th January 2010

Source: www.out-law.com

Freedom of information: caught in the act – The Guardian

“The Freedom of Information Act is five years old – a piece of groundbreaking legislation that has forced public bodies to reveal data they would really rather not.”

Full story

The Guardian, 4th January 2010

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Jack Straw issues ‘veto’ certificate under the Freedom of Information Act – Ministry of Justice

“Justice Secretary Jack Straw has issued a ‘veto’ certificate under section 53 of the Freedom of Information Act, overruling the Information Tribunal’s decision of 23 June 2009.”

Full press release

Ministry of Justice, 10th December 2009

Source: www.justice.gov.uk

Minutes of cabinet committee meeting ‘to stay secret’ – BBC News

“The justice secretary has blocked the release of minutes of a 1997 cabinet committee meeting on devolution.”

Full story

BBC News, 10th December 2009

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Freedom of information – update on recent FoI cases – Law Society’s Gazette

“The recent controversy over bonuses paid to civil servants employed by the Ministry of Defence highlights the public interest in salaries and bonuses of public sector officials.”

Full story

Law Society’s Gazette, 10th December 2009

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Freedom of Information – BBC News

“The Freedom of Information Act 2000 finally came into force on 1st January 2005.

Soon to celebrate its fifth birthday the Act is regarded by many as a crucial tool in bringing transparency and accountability to government.”

Full story

BBC News, 20th October 2009

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

BBC wins right to keep costs secret – Daily Telegraph

“The BBC yesterday won the right to keep secret the production costs of some of its most famous programmes, including Top Gear, in a ruling at the High Court.”

Full story

Daily Telegraph, 2nd October 2009

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

ICO publishes guidance on some exemptions from FOI requests – OUT-LAW.com

“The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), which oversees compliance with the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, has published guidance on what information local authorities can and cannot release.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 1st September 2009

Source: www.out-law.com

Changes confirmed for data protection and freedom of information appeals – OUT-LAW.com

“People appealing against rulings by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) will face a new tribunal structure from January next year. The Information Tribunal, which hears appeals on ICO rulings, will become part of a wider system.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 17th August 2009

Source: www.out-law.com

Information Tribunal overlooked public interest in legal privilege case, says High Court – OUT-LAW.com

“The Information Tribunal misunderstood part of a Freedom of Information (FOI) Act request and failed to properly adjudicate other parts of it, the High Court has said. The case must be re-considered by the Tribunal.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 23rd July 2009

Source: www.out-law.com

Her Majesty’s Treasury v Information Commissioner – WLR Daily

Her Majesty’s Treasury v Information Commissioner [2009] EWHC 1811 (Admin); [2009] WLR (D) 251

“The convention that law officers’ advice to ministerial departments should not be disclosed without their consent continued to operate after the enactment of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, but was subject to the principles of that Act.”

WLR Daily, 22nd July 2009

Source: www.lawreports.co.uk

Please note once a case has been fully reported in one of the ICLR series the corresponding WLR Daily summary is removed.

Government to ensure information preserved for future – Ministry of Justice

“The government has today set out plans to make sure that more public information is made available and is preserved for future generations.”

Full press release

Ministry of Justice, 16th July 2009

Source: www.justice.gov.uk

Freedom of information regulator accused of excessive delays – The Guardian

“Freedom of information campaigners say the regulator takes too long to decide to release documents to the public, undermining efforts to open up official files.”

Full story

The Guardian, 2nd July 2009

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Freedom of Information Act annual report 2008 – Ministry of Justice

The fourth annual report on the operation of the Freedom of Information Act in central government.”

Full press release

Ministry of Justice, 25th June 2009

Source: www.justice.gov.uk

Royal secrets withheld under revised information rules – Independent on Sunday

“Members of the public and journalists will be banned from seeing the contents of secret documents on the Cabinet and Royal Family under measures quietly announced by Gordon Brown last week.”

Full story

Independent on Sunday, 14th June 2009

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Names of judges found guilty of misconduct to stay secret – The Guardian

“The government and the judiciary can continue to conceal the names of more than 170 misbehaving judges, a freedom of information tribunal has ruled.”

Full story

The Guardian, 15th June 2009

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Time spent in error counts towards FOI rejections, says Information Tribunal – OUT-LAW.com

“An organisation is allowed to count time spent on errors in calculating when it can refuse a Freedom Of Information (FOI) Act request, the Information Tribunal has ruled.”

Full story

OUT-LAW.com, 9th June 2009

Source: www.out-law.com

Elitist culture of secrecy must end, says Lord Falconer – The Times

“The former Lord Chancellor wants an end to off-the-record briefings and a relaxation of Cabinet collective responsibility.”

Full story

The Times, 2nd June 2009

Source: www.timesonline.co.uk

Abortion numbers for disabilities should be kept secret: Government lawyers – Daily Telegraph

“Releasing data on the number of abortions performed for conditions like clubroot and cleft palate may cause ‘mental distress or harm’ to vulnerable women and must be kept secret, lawyers for the Department of Health have argued.”

Full story

Daily Telegraph, 29th May 2009

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

Late abortion tribunal challenge – BBC News

“Pro-life campaigners are continuing their fight for the publication of details of late medical abortions. An information tribunal is set to hear a Department of Health appeal that such information should not be published.”

Full story

BBC News, 28th May 2009

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Order to release animal test data – BBC News

“Several universities and major colleges have been ordered to reveal information about their animal experiments by the Information Commissioner’s Office.”

Full story

BBC News, 9th April 2009

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Names of misbehaving judges ‘should be made public’ – The Guardian

“An attempt to force the names of misbehaving judges into the open will be launched tomorrow in a groundbreaking freedom of information case.”

Full story

The Guardian, 16th March 2009

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

MPs vote to change law to keep home addresses secret – Daily Telegraph

“The move came after a court ordered Parliament to disclose details of properties on which MPs claim expenses. The House of Commons on Monday backed an amendment to the Political Parties and Elections Bill, which effectively excludes MPs’ addresses from the Freedom of Information Act.”

Full story

Daily Telegraph, 3rd March 2009

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk


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