Freedom of Information (FOI) is now an established and fully-accepted feature of all Government departments and offices and many public or publicly-funded bodies in Ireland (now known as “FOI bodies”). The Freedom of Information Act 2014 establishes the following statutory rights for the public:
- The right to be granted access to records held by FOI bodies, subject to exemptions and exclusions set out in the Act
- The right to apply to FOI bodies for the amendment of personal information in records held by them, on the grounds that it is incomplete, incorrect or misleading, and
- A general right to apply to FOI bodies for, and obtain, reasons and underlying material fact-finding in respect of administrative decisions or “acts”, subject to certain conditions.
In addition, the Act obliges FOI bodies to publish information about themselves, the information they hold, and the internal guidelines and precedents they use in decision-making, as well as proactively publishing information of relevance or interest to the public which would routinely be accessible by way of FOI request. The Act further obliges FOI bodies to familiarise themselves with, and have regard to, the Code of Practice for FOI which has been drawn up by the Minister for Public Enterprise and Reform.
This course provides an introduction to, and grounding in, the main aspects of the legislation as well as the grounds for non-disclosure. As well as sharing an FOI body practitioner’s experience, it will include a case study in how to apply the Act in a practical context, and take a look at the role of the Information Commissioner and the courts on appeal. It is designed to be a practical and focused course for any public servant involved in the provision of information to the public.
Following the successful completion of the course, attendees will have acquired a knowledge and developed skills and techniques which will give them the ability to perform better in this complex and demanding role.
On completion of the course participants will know:
- How Freedom of Information legislation applies to their organisation
- The rights of access for members of the public under Freedom of Information legislation, and the exceptions that apply
- How to process requests and applications, and how and when to make decisions and deal with reviews, under the legislation
- The roles, powers and functions of the Office of the Information Commissioner and the courts on appeal
- On completion of the course graduates will be able to:
- Identify areas within their organisations that may need attention and remedial action
- Handle requests by individuals for access to information
- Ensure compliance with obligations under the Act
- Provide information, assistance and training to colleagues
This course is accredited by the Institute of Commercial Management (ICM). Delegates will receive an ICM continuing professional development (CPD) certificate on successful completion of the course including a single written take-home assessment. Public Affairs Ireland is an ICM accredited Professional Development Training Centre and is authorized to deliver ICM approved training and development programmes leading to CPD Awards accredited by the Institute of Commercial Management.
Register your interest.
To register your interest in upcoming cohorts of this programme, email email@example.com
For further information on having this course delivered inhouse, either online or in-person, email firstname.lastname@example.org