It covers Central Government, Local Councils, the National Health Services, Schools, the Police and the Fire Service, and a large number of other public bodies.
How do I ask for information?
You need to request information in writing, using a letter, an email or a fax. You can either ask questions, describe the information you require, or ask for documents, reports or correspondence. Be as specific as possible – we need a clear description of what we should be looking for. You must include your name and address (an email address counts). Please also include a phone number so that we can contact you if we need to clarify what you are asking for.
Please mention "Freedom of Information" or "FOI" in your request. You do not have to do this, but it will make it easier for us to recognise your request. If you would like to receive the information in a specific format (e.g. on paper or electronically, please state this in your letter. You should also mention any special needs you might have (e.g. large print).
Where do I send my request?
Please send your request to the Council's Data Protection / FOI Officer. His contact details are below. Please mark the envelope "Freedom of Information Request" or "FOI Request".
You can also send an email to this address: firstname.lastname@example.org Please use the "Freedom of Information Request" or "FOI Request" as the subject line if you send your request via email
What will the council do?
The Freedom of Information Act requires us to respond with an answer in a maximum of 20 working days. This time limit might occasionally be extended if we have to consider complex legal issues, but we will always let you know. We will also explain why the delay is necessary. We will always try to provide information as soon as possible.
In many cases, we will give you the information you have requested. However, there may be reasons why we cannot provide the information you have asked us for. We will always tell you why we are not providing information.
What happens if I am not satisfied with the response I get?
If you have not received the information you asked for, or if some of it has been withheld, the Council has a complaints procedure for FOI Requests. In this case, please contact the Council’s Data Protection / FOI Officer.