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Search guides, case notes, opinions, reports and other information. Resources and publications can also be searched by date and other options.
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More information about the resource categories on this page
Commonly used guides include:
- The OIA for Ministers and agencies
- The LGOIMA for local government agencies
- Making official information requests: a guide for requesters
Detailed guidance on the official information legislation and aspects of good administrative practice.
We also have guidance on disability rights and protected disclosures.
Case notes and opinions
Case notes are a short case summary, often demonstrating an aspect of a case.
An Ombudsman's Opinion is published where there is public interest in showing the full details of a case.
Reports include OPCAT, disability rights, official information practice and systemic investigation.
Contains our media releases, newsletters, pamphlets, speeches and fact sheets. Fact sheets are published in multiple language and accessible formats.
This includes our annual reports and strategic intentions.
Projects, reference and data
This includes our official information complaints data, updates on investigations and other projects, and submissions by the Ombudsman.
View all projects, reference and data
Template letters and work sheets
These template letters and work sheets can be used by agencies to help respond to official information requests.
1428 Resources Show all
Report on an unannounced inspection of the Kensington Centre Mental Health Inpatient Unit, Timaru, under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989OPCAT reportsExecutive Summary Background In 2007, the Ombudsmen were designated one of the National Preventive Mechanisms (NPMs) under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989 (COTA), with responsibility for examining and monitoring the conditions and tre
Final report on an unannounced inspection of Waikeria Prison under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989OPCAT reportsThe following report has been prepared in my capacity as a National Preventive Mechanism (NPM) under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989 (COTA).
OPCAT COVID-19 report: Report on inspections of aged care facilities under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989OPCAT reportsExecutive summary This report outlines my key findings, suggestions, and recommendations in relation to OPCAT COVID-19 inspections of six secure aged care facilities (the Facilities) between 17 April and 8 May 2020.
The OIA and the Inquiries Act 2013Official informationThis guide aims to answer questions about how the Inquiries Act 2013 interacts with the Official Information Act 1982 (OIA). This guide discusses:
He Take Kōhukihuki | A Matter of UrgencySystemic investigationsExecutive summary My investigation The role of Oranga Tamariki—the Ministry for Children (the Ministry) is to promote the wellbeing of tamariki, rangatahi and their whānau.
Request for names of clusters that COVID-19 cases were linked toCase notesSection 18(c)(i) OIA applied—release would be contrary to s 92ZZG(2) Health Act 1956— discretion to use or disclose contact tracing information for the ‘effective management of infectious diseases’—exercise of discretion reviewed under the Ombudsmen Act
Off the Record: An investigation into the Ministry of Health’s collection, use, and reporting of information about the deaths of people with intellectual disabilitiesSystemic investigationsExecutive summary The investigation New Zealanders with intellectual disabilities have overall poorer health outcomes compared to people without intellectual disabilities, despite higher than average use of health services.
Treatment of disabled mother and removal of newborn childCase notesOutcome The Chief Ombudsman formed the opinion that Child, Youth and Family, then as part of the Ministry of Social Development (the Ministry), had acted unreasonably in its treatment of the child’s mother.
Use of incorrect information, lack of trauma-informed practice, failure to assess children’s safetyCase notesRepeated use of incorrect, unverified information about a mother, including at Family Court—failure to assess safety of children—lack of trauma-informed practice—poor complaints handling process and inadequate apology
Making Disability Rights Real 2014 - 2019Disability rights reportsExecutive Summary New Zealand has a mixed record when it comes to the rights of disabled people.
OPCAT COVID-19 report: Report on inspections of prisons under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989OPCAT reportsExecutive summary This report outlines my key findings and recommendations in relation to nine prisons inspected during the period of 29 April 2020 to 8 May 2020.
Complaint about the reimbursement of costs when attending the Chief Executive’s Advisory PanelCase notesComplaint about Oranga Tamariki's (the Ministry) Chief Executive’s Advisory Panel’s process for reimbursement of costs - complainant was not informed of the process - Ombudsman suggested an update to the information sheet provided to attendees
Complaint from a young person in a Care and Protection ResidenceCase notesComplaint from young person in Care and Protection Residence - Planning for placement outside Residence and communication about this unreasonable - Placement in Residence to be a last resort and for as short a time as possible - Placement found during i
Cancellation of access between mother and son due to COVID Alert Level 4 lockdownCase notesCancellation of face-to-face access due to lockdown - Oranga Tamariki (the Ministry) applied blanket rule not required by the Health Act Notices and failed to consider individual circumstances - Access reinstated so Chief Ombudsman recommended apology
OPCAT COVID-19 report: Report on inspections of mental health facilities under the Crimes of Torture Act 1989OPCAT reportsExecutive summary This report outlines my key findings and recommendations in relation to the five inspections of mental health and addiction facilities (the Facilities) during the period 29 April 2020 – 6 May 2020.
Proactive release: Good practices for proactive release of official informationOfficial informationThis guide:
Request for email between journalist and sourceCase notesSection 9(2)(a) OIA did not apply—one party consented to release—both parties acting in their professional capacities—information already in the public domain—s 9(2)(ba)(ii) did not apply—no blanket confidentiality for all communications with journalist
Waka Tangata: APOR E-news (June 2020)Waka Tangata
Decision not to return bear skin specimen, surrendered pursuant to section 27(2) of the Trade in Endangered Species Act 1989Case notesImportation of bear skin into New Zealand without a permit, resulting in its surrender under section 27(2) of the Trade in Endangered Species Act 1989 (TIES) – whether the Department of Conservation gave reasonable consideration to exercising its discre
Ombudsman Quarterly Review Autumn 2020Ombudsman Quarterly Reviews (OQR)In this issue: how our Office responded to lockdown COVID-19 inspections of prisons and care homes complaints resolution—avoiding a backlog Chief Ombudsman’s term renewed.
Request for MSD historic claims guidebookCase notesComplaint about the decision to withhold a document containing procedures and guidance under section 9(2)(j) of the Official Information Act—section 9(2)(j) did not apply—engagements conducted on a ‘take it or leave it’ basis are not clearly ‘negotiatio
Expectations for OPCAT COVID-19 inspections - pamphletPamphlets and postersThis pamphlet compliments the Expectations for OPCAT COVID-19 inspections to guide agencies responsible for places of detention during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Full Practice review of social work practice after notification of investigationCase notesComplaint about Oranga Tamariki’s (the Ministry) apparent failure to protect a vulnerable child—the Ministry reviewed the complaint after notification of investigation and began a full case review - Chief Ombudsman felt this was a satisfactory resolutio
Names and contact details of public sector employeesOfficial informationThis guide provides advice on how to deal with OIA and LGOIMA requests for the names and contact details of public sector employees.
Processing requests for names of public sector employees work sheetWorksheets and other resourcesThe Ombudsman’s general position is that there is usually no basis for withholding staff names if all that would be revealed is what they did in their official capacity. However, withholding staff names may be justified in particular circumstances.
Decision to implement locked cell policyCase notesComplaint about the negative effects of implementing a locked cell policy in the Kaaka North and South pods at Northland Region Corrections Facility – Chief Ombudsman found that the implementation was unreasonable – the significant consequences (lack of
OPCAT inspections during COVID-19 pandemic – update and Statement of Principles posterPamphlets and postersThis poster compliments the set of principles provided to guide agencies responsible for places of detention during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the full update and Statement or Principles for more information.
Expectations for OPCAT COVID-19 InspectionsFactsheetsPurpose Inspecting places of detention helps to ensure that people who are deprived of their liberty are treated humanely, and their rights are respected and protected.
Upcoming OPCAT inspection by Chief Ombudsman’s teamFactsheetsInformation for residents of a facility that is being inspected, and their family and whanau.
Decision to release tender information in response to Official Information Act requestCase notesComplaint 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
Extension of time limit to enable kanohi ki te kanohi consultationCase notesExtension to enable kanohi ki te kanohi consultation on OIA request reasonable in the circumstances
Request for record of ‘without prejudice’ meetingCase notesSection 7(2)(g) LGOIMA did not apply—‘without prejudice’ privilege is not an aspect of legal professional privilege—s 7(2)(c)(ii) applied—obligation of confidence attaches to information subject to without prejudice privilege—release would make people r