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  • Decision to release tender information in response to Official Information Act request

    Case notes
    Complaint about a decision to release information under the Official Information Act—Ministry consulted adequately with affected party—Ministry took into account affected party’s submissions, all relevant considerations, principle of availability, legis
  • Request for information about death in custody

    Case notes
    Request for all correspondence about death in custody—unreasonable to rely on sections 9(2)(a) and 9(2)(ba)(i) without compiling and reviewing the information—subsequent reliance on section 18(f) (substantial collation or research) also unjustified—
  • Request for information on public service chief executive pay and remuneration

    Case notes
    Request for information on chief executive pay and remuneration—s 9(2)(a) did not provide good reason to withhold total chief executive pay—disclosure recommended by the Chief Ombudsman—s 9(2)(a) did provide good reason to withhold individual compon
  • Request for Police Commissioner’s letter to the Minister about Deputy Commissioner

    Case notes
    Request for letter written by the Police Commissioner to the Minister of Police about response to Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) findings on bullying complaints about Deputy Police Commissioner—s 9(2)(a) applied—information related to t
  • Request for Chief Executive’s performance agreement and KPIs

    Case notes
    Request for Chief Executive’s performance agreement and KPIs—s 7(2)(a) LGOIMA did not provide good reason to withhold most of the performance agreements and KPIs—however, s 7(2)(c)(ii) provided good reason to withhold ‘stretch targets’—there was a m
  • Request for staff names and initials in Commerce Commission memorandum

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) OIA did not apply—not necessary to withhold staff names to protect their privacy—section 9(2)(g)(ii) did not apply—no information to suggest release would lead to improper pressure or harassment—section 9(2)(g)(i) did not apply—no reason
  • Request for names and contact details in Department of Corrections’ emails

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) OIA did not apply to names—many of the names were publicly available— seniority— section 9(2)(g)(ii) did not apply to names—no evidence to suggest release would lead to improper pressure or harassment—section 9(2)(a) did not apply to ema
  • Privacy: A guide to section 9(2)(a) of the OIA and section 7(2)(a) of the LGOIMA

    Official information
    This is a guide to the privacy withholding ground found in section 9(2)(a) of the OIA and section 7(2)(a) of the LGOIMA.
  • Chief executive expenses

    Official information
    This guide sets out the Ombudsman’s approach to requests for information about state sector Chief Executives’ expenses.
  • Request for officials’ names in information about glyphosate

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) OIA did not apply—not necessary to withhold staff names to protect their privacy—section 9(2)(g)(ii) did not apply—no information to suggest release would lead to improper pressure or harassment—possibility of public criticism not enough
  • Request for names of staff and contractors involved in producing crime and safety survey

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(g)(ii) OIA applied to staff names—on basis of past conduct Ombudsman satisfied that requester would engage in improper pressure or harassment that would impact on the Ministry’s ability to attract and retain staff and contactors—section 9(2
  • Request for information about staff grievances and allegations of bullying

    Opinions
    Sam Sherwood, on behalf of Stuff, made a request to Selwyn District Council for information about staff grievances and allegations of bullying.
  • Request for names of MSD staff in emails about the drafting of a Bill

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) OIA did not apply—not necessary to withhold staff names to protect their privacy—no information to suggest privacy or safety concerns, or risk of improper pressure or harassment.
  • Request for staff names in employment investigation report into Joanne Harrison

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) OIA applied—significant privacy interest given the nature and content of report and impact on individuals—no public interest override.
  • Request for names and address for service of two Police officers

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) and 9(2)(g)(ii) OIA applied—past conduct suggested the requester would publish information targeting or encouraging others to target the officers in a way that would breach their personal privacy, and subject them to improper pressure or
  • Request for names of staff involved in sending email to parents about Pink Shirt Day

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) OIA applied—correspondence with the requester and information supplied by the New Zealand Police suggested the requester would approach the staff outside of the official complaints process, and may have behaved in an abusive and threaten
  • Request for information about appointment of public service chief executive

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) applied to names of unsuccessful candidates—no public interest override—section 9(2)(a) and 9(2)(ba)(ii) did not apply to the names of external panellists—section 9(2)(a) did not apply to officials’ names, Cabinet distribution and attend
  • Request for reports into prisoner deaths in custody

    Case notes
    Request for reports into deaths of two prisoners in custody—s 9(2)(a) applied to parts of reports—strong public interest in release—disclosure to the Howard League subject to conditions
  • Request for information about an employment investigation (demotion)

    Case notes
    Privacy and confidentiality grounds apply—need for accountability when things go wrong— nature and seriousness of the wrongdoing—seniority of the individual involved—release of summary information to satisfy public interest
  • Names of senior and principal historian involved in writing treaty settlement memo

    Case notes
    Sections 9(2)(a) and 9(2)(g)(ii) OIA did not apply—information publicly available—seniority—degree of responsibility—no material supporting likelihood of pressure or harassment
  • Request for information about an employment investigation (personal grievance)

    Case notes
    Privacy and confidentiality grounds apply but need for accountability when things go wrong— seniority of the individuals involved—extent of information in the public domain—other means of scrutiny and regulation—third party review satisfied the public interest in this case
  • Request for information about an employment investigation (withholding grounds)

    Case notes
    Privacy and confidentiality grounds applied—need for accountability when things go wrong— extent of information in the public domain—need to provide the ‘full picture’—nature and seriousness of the wrongdoing¬—whether other means of scrutiny or regulation—release of summary information to satisfy public interest
  • Request for individual’s immigration history

    Case notes
    Privacy ground applied and not outweighed by public interest because discovery available
  • Request for identities of guests who dined at a council’s expense

    Case notes
    Accountability for spending public money—level of disquiet, speculation or controversy—s 7(2)(a) did not provide good reason to withhold
  • Request for complaint against a health provider

    Case notes
    Privacy interest balanced against public interest in ensuring natural justice—public interest met by release of summary information
  • Request for staff named in emails about genetically modified corn

    Case notes
    Section 6(d) OIA did not apply—no real and objective risk of danger to safety—s 9(2)(g)(ii) OIA did not apply—many of the names were already publicly available in connection with this issue and no harm had ensued—section 9(2)(g)(i) OIA did not apply—inf
  • Request for Hazardous Activities and Industries List

    Opinions
    On 4 September 2008 Mr Sharpe sought from the Council “details of the 3099 ‘Unverified HAIL’ sites in the region, i.e. their location and the activity/industry that are known to have the potential to cause land contamination”.
  • Request for identities of contractors

    Case notes
    Privacy interest outweighed by overriding public interest in promoting accountability, transparency and public confidence and trust in the integrity of the public sector
  • Request for names of teaching staff at Massey University

    Case notes
    Section 9(2)(a) OIA did not apply—names already in the public domain and known to students—public-facing nature of the role means that University teaching staff would not ordinarily expect their names to remain private—risk of spam email was not a reaso
  • Request for address information to assist enforcement of judgement orders

    Case notes
    Landlords obtained judgment orders from Courts or Tenancy Tribunal against former tenants but were unable to have them executed as current address for judgment debtors unknown— requested current address information from Department of Work and Income (now part of MSD)—information withheld to protect clients’ privacy, and future supply of information— public interest in maintaining the proper administration of justice and promoting respect for the law outweighed privacy interest—MSD agreed to provide address information direct to Department for Courts
  • Request for information about serious and sentinel event reports

    Case notes
    Request to District Health Board for information relating to ‘serious and sentinel events’—22 SSE reports withheld in full—s 9(2)(a) applies to information identifying patients’ families and medical staff—s 9(2)(ba)(i) applies to information identifying medical staff as release would impact negatively on willingness of staff to report incidents and to cooperate with subsequent investigations—s 9(1) public interest in release to promote the accountability of the DHB for management of individual cases and to assure the public that any identified deficiencies are being remedied—reports released with deletions—two ‘protected quality assurance activity’ reports withheld—s 59 of Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act prohibits disclosure of information gained in course of a protected quality assurance activity but s 60 allows release of information that does not identify a particular individual—reports released with deletions
  • Request for confirmation of debtor’s removal from New Zealand for purposes of insurance claim

    Case notes
    Privacy interest outweighed by public interest in enabling pursuit of legal rights and remedies