anti doping in the NRL

Tymeka made this Freedom of Information request to Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority

The request was refused by Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority.

From: Tymeka


Dear Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority,

If possible I would like all documents relating to the NRL and anti-doping.

1. A document stating the rules of anti-doping and repercussions in any sport.

2. Documentation revealing to any NRL and doping occurrences e.g Sharks.

Yours faithfully,

Tymeka Murray

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Locutus Sum left an annotation ()

@Tymeka It is not my wish to discourage you to use Right to Know but I think that you would make a better use of the website if you read even a very little part about Freedom of Information.

In my opinion, your recent requests are most likely to be refused or delayed because of the way that they are written and because of the material that you request.

The Freedom of Information law in your country does not give you a right of access to information! It gives you a right to access existing documents. It is also absolutely necessary that it should be possible for the FOI officer of the agency to understand exactly which document or documents you are requesting and which documents you are not requesting.

Please look again at your application to the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority.

At the beginning of the request you say that you would like "all documents relating to the NRL and anti-doping." Then you say something different in the paragraphs with number 1 and 2. In the paragraph number 1 you say that you want "a document", not "all documents". In the paragraph 2 you say you want "documentation revealing [but I think you mean "relating"] to "any NRL and doping occurences e.g. Sharks". Is it still "all documents" that you want, as you say in the beginning, or now do you only want a more limited number of documents. Also I do not think that an FOI officer will understand what you mean by relating to "any NRL ..." or did you mean "relating to any reported occurence of doping within the NRL"??

It is not my attempt to be pedantic. I wish only to say that your requests will fail because they cannot be understood clearly.

I wish to make a few suggestions. Number 1: never ask for "all documents relating ..." It is impossible for any officer to decide whether, in your mind, many documents "relate" to something. Number 2: say in a clear way the time period of documents that you wish the department to consider. For example, you might be more interested in documents in 2007-2009 than a document in 2010, or 1988. If that is true, then tell the FOI officer. Number 3: think very carefully about exactly what documents you want and make your request in a way that a very intelligent child could understand. This way you will be sure to remove any ambiguity in your request.

Because I do not understand what your request really is about, so I think also that an FOI officer will not. But if can try to read your mind and guess what you want, then maybe a request like the following is better. If you think so, then you can send an update to the Authoriity. (I have to search Google News to try to understand).

"I request access to the following documents created between 1 January 2012 and 31 December 2014:
1. Any notification made to the Authority of a suspicion of illegal doping within any of the teams of the National Rugby League (NRL).
2. Any correspondence between the Authority and any NRL team relating to an instance of suspected doping.
3. Any notification by the Authority of sanctions to be imposed on any NRL team as a consequence of suspected doping.

Also, without regard to the time period of creation, I request any document that indicates the specific pieces of legislation that are currently relevant to the anti-doping activities of the Authority."

I must say again that I do not understand the activities of the Authority, I do not know anything about doping and I do not know about the NRL. Also I did not understand what is the relevance of sharks and could not make sense of that sentence ... so what I have written for a request cannot really be what you mean. It is only my bad attempt to show a request that has a better fit with the law of Freedom of Information in Australia.

I can make similar comments about your other recent requests. Please consider how to make a better request in each case; a more precise request, with a better description of what document (not information) is wanted, and with a statement of the time period for search. If you do not do this, then in my opinion the only thing that will happen is that you will waste 30 days before the department asks you to fix your request.

So for the last thing, please do not be discouraged, but please get help.

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From: Legal
Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority

Dear Tymeka,

I refer to your email dated 20 February 2015 in which you sought access under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) to:

"1. A document stating the rules of anti-doping and repercussions in any sport.

2. Documentation revealing to any NRL and doping occurrences e.g Sharks"

A valid FOI request was received on 20 February 2015 and the statutory period for processing that request will commence from that date.

Should we need to consult as a part of responding to your request we will be disclosing your name to any party we consult with.

We hope to be able to advise you of our decision on your request in the near future. Should you have any queries regarding the progress of your request, please contact me on (02) 6222 4247 or at [ASADA request email].

Kind Regards


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From: Legal
Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority

Attachment Practical Refusal Letter Tymeka Murray.pdf
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Dear Ms Murray,

Please fins attached correspondence in response to your FOI request.

Kind Regards

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From: Kate Corkery
Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority

Dear Ms Murray,


I refer to your request under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth)
(FOI Act) dated 20 February 2015 and the Practical Refusal Notice sent to
you from ASADA on 24 February 2015. 


In that Notice you were notified that a ‘practical refusal reason’ existed
in relation to the processing of your FOI request.  As such, ASADA invited
you to consult with us in order to revise your request so as to make it
more manageable for ASADA to process.  We outlined that under section 24AB
of the FOI Act, you had 14 days to respond to the Notice.  Those 14 days
have now passed and we have not received any correspondence from you.  As
such, under subsection 24AB(7) of the FOI Act your request is now taken to
have been withdrawn.


If you wish to discuss this further, please contact me at
[1][ASADA request email].


Kind regards


Kate Corkery
Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority

T +61 (0) 2 6222 4247
F +61 (0) 2 6222 4347

E  [2][email address]
W [3]



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