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Making FOI requests (UK)

Discussion in 'Action Alerts and Advocacy' started by Demepivo, Jun 7, 2017.

  1. Demepivo

    Demepivo Dolores Abernathy

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    *I am sure a post of this nature has been made elsewhere at some time but it's always useful to have the information to hand and in one place*

    Possibly the best starting point is the Information Commissioners' Office (ICO) page on how to access information from a public body in the UK

    https://ico.org.uk/for-the-public/official-information/

    I could copy & past more but this gives you a flavour
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
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  2. Demepivo

    Demepivo Dolores Abernathy

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    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
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  3. Demepivo

    Demepivo Dolores Abernathy

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    As an example, below is the information Bristol University give on making FOIs

    More details can be found on their FOI pages

    http://www.bristol.ac.uk/secretary/foi/

    http://www.bristol.ac.uk/secretary/foi/request/

    Hope this helps
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
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  4. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    I've been looking through some of the requests on WDTK, and another comment I want to make is that requests which seem like polemics are more trouble to do and less likely to be useful. My underestanding is that it is best to make the request as brief as possible, clearly explaining what information you want. You do not need to explain why you want the infomation, although explaining why there is legitimate public interest in the specific infomation requested may be valuable at the appeal stage. The more claims a request makes, the more likely there is that there will be an error that can be used against you, or something that could be used to argue that your request is vexatious. Those dealing with FOI requests will not be interested in engaging in a debate.

    It's also important to not do anything which could be indicated as encouraging others to make FOI requests as part of a 'campaign', so I have a slight fear that even just posting the infomation in this thread could cause problems to other people seeking infomation about CFS through the FOIA. Hopefully we're past the point where anyone with concerns about this sort of research is lumped together as part of a scary amorphous mass, but I do not know. Prior to last years tribunal ruling there were a number of dodgy ICO judgements that used quotes from PR to try to smear everyone who posted here.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017
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  5. FredaF

    FredaF

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    Ester Crawleys's recent talk to renal specialists was all about how NOT to release information requested ie say the request is vexatious, or the person is fake, or the cost of getting the data over the 450 pound limit, or the data will be used for a publication at a future date (EC points out that you don't need to have a publication date). One thing reading through the What do you know site, is that very little seems to be known about the outcome measures at NHS clinics and/or research facilities and their don't seem to be any policies/procedures on ME/CFS at NHS or the Department of Health. NICE appear to ignore ME/CFS and have no guidelines for people who have physical/physiological abnormalities. Is it the polemic tone to some requests, that is resulting in the non-provision of information? Or is this information really not available? When you look at AIDS/HIV research it is way, way higher than most other diseases and per capita more per person than most other diseases. Can anything be learnt from their campaign?
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2017

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