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  • Request for offender’s photo on police file

    Case notes
    Rape victim sought photograph of attacker whose face she had never seen—Police refused the request to protect the privacy of the offender—s 9(2)(a) applied—public interest in assisting victims of crime to recover from trauma and move on with their lives—balance of competing privacy and public interest considerations needed to be made—appropriate to make photograph available for viewing subject to appropriate conditions
  • Request for qualifications and work history of staff at Polytechnic Department

    Case notes
    Request for details about staff at Polytechnic—withheld under s 9(2)(a) to protect privacy—public interest in ensuring employment practices of Polytechnic are transparent and fair—met by summary release of staff details and selection process
  • Request for names and email addresses of people consulted on draft speech

    Case notes
    Recipients and senders of emails consulted—disclosure would not inhibit senior public servants from expressing free and frank opinions in future—however others would be inhibited
  • Request for comments on early draft cabinet papers

    Case notes
    Request for documents regarding Kyoto Protocol—information contained initial Treasury comments on draft versions of cabinet paper—part of informal consultation early in policy making process—concern that release would result in officials being less co-operative and formalise the process—withholding necessary to maintain effective conduct of public affairs
  • Department of Corrections required to state reasons for security classification

    Case notes
    Prison inmate complained that his security classification had been unreasonably assessed and Ombudsman concluded the Department failed to provide ‘strong reasons’ (which must be stated)—Ombudsman found the Prison officers had based their classification on uncorroborated, unrecorded, verbal statement made by another inmate—Ombudsman upheld complaint based on inequitable situation that would result if prison relied solely on this information, however, the inmate released before any recommendation could be made
  • Department of Corrections revises guidelines on implications for visitors possessing drugs

    Case notes
    Prison banned inmate’s family members from visiting for 12-months after small amount of cannabis found in their possession—the inmate complained that the duration of ban was unreasonable but the Department of Corrections noted it had zero tolerance policy for drugs with an automatic 12-month prohibition order to be placed on anyone found with them on prison property—Ombudsman concluded blanket ban unreasonable and the Department agreed each case to be considered on merits and prepared guidelines for prisons—Ombudsman advised inmate to apply for a review of prohibition order under the new guidelines
  • Request for information by father relating to school suspension of son

    Case notes
    Request by non-custodial father for information relating to his son’s suspension refused in order to protect son’s privacy—weight to be accorded to privacy vis-à-vis school’s obligations of disclosure under s 77 Education Act—summary of information released to satisfy public interest—Education Act 1989, s 77; Guardianship Act 1968, s 3
  • Request for individual totals of abortions reported in 1997 for certain licensed institutions

    Case notes
    Request for individual totals of abortions reported in 1997 for certain licensed institutions—established privacy interests not outweighed by countervailing public interest, subject only to release of further statistical information
  • Request for information relating to Civic Creche Inquiry

    Case notes
    Request for information relating to Christchurch Civic Creche Inquiry—most information released, but all names and other personal information withheld on privacy grounds—view formed privacy considerations did not attach to names of public sector employees in the context of their positions—privacy did attach to other employment related matters, and to names of private sector employees, children and parents involved—no countervailing public interest considerations identified
  • Request for information concerning patients believed ineligible for publicly funded healthcare

    Case notes
    Request for information from Immigration Service concerning patients believed ineligible for publicly funded healthcare—some information withheld on privacy grounds—some information not held—balance to be struck between public interest in release of information to the extent necessary to confirm eligibility for public funding and privacy interest—release of statement satisfied public interest
  • Department of Corrections required to review process for media contact with inmates

    Case notes
    Access to prison inmates by the news media—conflict between procedural manual and communications policy—policy to be reviewed to ensure consistency with procedures
  • Department of Corrections protocol with Ombudsman regarding death in custody

    Case notes
    Death in custody—application of Protocol between Department of Corrections and Office of the Ombudsmen—issues arising from monitoring departmental investigation—need for improved communication, videotaping, fire safety and emergency procedures