Double facepalm

The public body responsible for enforcing compliance with the Freedom of Information Act is currently subject to a complaint from its own staff — for, errrr, failing to comply with the Freedom of Information Act.

With a pay dispute raging at the Information Commissioner’s Office, the regulator has not only ignored an FOI request on an 11% raise for three senior executives but also a follow-up complaint from its own branch of the PCS union.

Like other public bodies, they are obligated to respond to requests within 20 working days — whether they actually release the information or not.

Perhaps time to read their own guidance.

UPDATE: Statement from the ICO …

“The ICO has a general duty to investigate complaints from members of the public who believe that an authority has failed to respond correctly to a request for information. That duty includes handling cases where the ICO is itself the public authority. A complaint of this type will be dealt with in the same way as any other, with safeguards in place to ensure an independent decision.”

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