Response times for Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy (FOIPOP) Act requests improved in 2022-23, according to the annual report by Information Access and Privacy Services.
While the volume of requests remained high, 80 per cent of requests were completed in 30 days or fewer, up from 76 per cent in last year’s report.
“Our staff worked with colleagues across government to manage our responsibilities under the act and ensure citizens’ right of access, while also respecting the privacy provisions of FOIPOP,” said Colton LeBlanc, Minister of Service Nova Scotia.
The report provides information about the Province’s compliance with the FOIPOP Act, including volume of requests, outcomes, application types, acceptance rates for the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner’s recommendations and the government’s timelines for completing requests.
In 2022-23, 91 per cent of requests were fulfilled within legislated timelines, which includes those completed within 30 days as well as requests that were granted an extension. It is the same rate as 2021-22, which marked an all-time high at that time.
The act acknowledges that extra time is sometimes needed in cases where a request requires a large volume of records from across departments, consultation with other public bodies or third parties, or when more information is needed from the applicant to clarify the scope of the request.
The report is available at: https://beta.novascotia.ca/documents/information-access-and-privacy-services-annual-report-2022-2023
— the Province received 2,702 FOIPOP requests in 2022-23, on par with 2,716 in 2021-22
— it completed 2,732 requests, including carryover requests from previous years
— the average page count per request was 138 pages; the largest single page count in any one application was 4,400 pages
— more than 15,000 employees have completed mandatory online training about their responsibilities under FOIPOP
— Right to Know Week begins today, September 25; it is marked each year in Canada to raise awareness of the importance of access rights and open, transparent government
Information on applying to access information under the FOIPOP Act is available at:
FOIPOP disclosure website: https://openinformation.novascotia.ca/
Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act: https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/freedom%20of%20information%20and%20protection%20of%20privacy.pdf