Correspondence with Atlassian about COVIDSafe

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, Department of Home Affairs should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

Dear Department of Home Affairs,

Could you please provide any correspondence between the department and Atlassian about the COVIDSafe app?

Specifically:
- any emails sent from the department to Atlassian or from Atlassian to the department containing any of the terms: COVIDSafe, Trace Together, Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus,
- any emails in reply,
- any attachments.

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

** This is an automated response. Please do not reply to this email **

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

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FOI, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive
Personal-Privacy

Good afternoon,

Thank you for your letter, received 24 September 2021.

Please note that, based on its scope, your request is best directed to the following:

https://www.health.gov.au/about-us/corpo...

Please note: as I have provided the above information, no further action will be taken on your email.

Kind Regards,

Michael
Position number: 60028261
Authorised FOI Officer
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department Of Home Affairs
E: [Department of Home Affairs request email]

Personal-Privacy
OFFICIAL: Sensitive

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Dear FOI,

Thank you for the link to information about the Department of Health’s FOI processes. However, I am requesting the correspondence between the Department of Home Affairs and Atlassian.

In evidence to the Senate Select Committee on COVID 19 on the 5th of May 2020, the department’s secretary indicated that the Department of Home Affairs “engaged with some commercial parties to assist in the conceptual prototype. That was all handed off to the DTA in early April.”

https://parlinfo.aph.gov.au/parlInfo/dow...

I am specifically requesting emails between the Department of Home Affairs and Atlassian in the context of this.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

** This is an automated response. Please do not reply to this email **

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

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FOI, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive
Personal-Privacy

In reply please quote:
FOI Request: FA 21/09/01245
File Number: OBJ2021/29399

Dear Concerned Citizen,

Acknowledgement of Freedom of Information Access request
I refer to your correspondence received on 24 September 2021 seeking access to documents held by the Department of Home Affairs (the Department) under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).

Scope of request
You have requested access to the following:

Could you please provide any correspondence between the department and Atlassian about the COVIDSafe app?

Specifically:
- any emails sent from the department to Atlassian or from Atlassian to the department containing any of the terms: COVIDSafe, Trace Together, Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus,
- any emails in reply,
- any attachments.

Your request was received by the Department on 24 September 2021 and has been allocated FOI request number FA 21/09/01245 . Please include your FOI request number in all correspondence with the Freedom of Information Section.

Timeframe for receiving your decision
The statutory timeframe for processing a request is 30 days from the date upon which your application was received by the Department.

Your review rights in relation to your request are available on the website of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner here.

Exclusion of staff details
The Department’s policy is to exclude the personal details of staff not in the Senior Executive Service (SES), as well as the direct contact details of SES staff, contained in documents that fall within scope of an FOI request. If you require personal details of non-SES officers, or direct contact details of SES staff, please inform us so the decision maker may consider your request. Otherwise we will take it that you agree to that information being excluded from the scope of your request.

Duplicate documents
If the FOI decision-maker deems a document to be a duplicate, they will not assess those pages as part of your FOI request. This means that if a there is a decision to release the document to you, you will receive only one copy, even if multiple copies of that document exists.
Publication of document

Where documents are released to you in response to your request, the Department may be required to publish these documents on its website within 10 working days in accordance with section 11C of the FOI Act. Publication will not be required where the documents contain personal or business affairs information.

Contacting the FOI Section

Should you wish to discuss your request you may contact the FOI Section at [Department of Home Affairs request email].

Kind regards,

FOI Officer - Geoff
Freedom of Information
Department of Home Affairs

E: [Department of Home Affairs request email]

Personal-Privacy
OFFICIAL: Sensitive

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FOI, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL

Dear applicant,

I refer to your request received on 24 September 2021 for access to
documents under the FOI Act. 

The current due date for your request is 24 October 2021.  Due to the
number of documents that are potentially in scope for this request, we
will not be able to finalise your request by the original due date.

In order for the Department to complete the process of retrieving all the
documents that fall within the scope of your request, the Department will
require additional time to process your request.

The Department seeks your agreement under section 15AA of the FOI Act to
extend the timeframe for the processing of your request by 30 days.  This
would extend the due date for your request to Wednesday 24 November 2021.
  

It would assist the Department in managing its FOI caseload if you could
provide a response to this request by close of business, Thursday 21
October 2021.

If you wish to discuss this matter further, please do not hesitate to
contact me by reply to this email.

 

 

Signed electronically

 

Glen

Position number 60081621

Authorised Decision Maker | Freedom of Information Section

FOI and Records Management Branch

Data Division | Strategy and National Resilience Group

Department of Home Affairs

 

 

OFFICIAL

 

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
the individual or entity to whom it is addressed. If you have received
this email by mistake, please advise the sender and delete the message and
attachments immediately.  This email, including attachments, may contain
confidential, sensitive, legally privileged and/or copyright information.
 

Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of this information
by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. 
The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  

Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
email.

Dear FOI,

Thank you for your email. I do not agree to your request for an extension of time.

According to this page on the OAIC website, “The Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) requires agencies and ministers to comply with statutory timeframes for processing FOI requests”.

https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...

I therefore request that you comply with the statutory timeframe.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

1 Attachment

OFFICIAL

In reply please quote:

FOI Request:       FA 21/09/01245

File Number:        OBJ2021/29399

 

Dear Applicant,

 

This email refers to your FOI request received on 24 September 2021
seeking access to:

 

Could you please provide any correspondence between the department and
Atlassian about the COVIDSafe app?

 

Specifically:

- any emails sent from the department to Atlassian or from Atlassian to
the department containing any of the terms: COVIDSafe, Trace Together,
Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus,

- any emails in reply,

- any attachments.

 

The purpose of this email is to advise you (as required under s.24AB of
the FOI Act) that I consider a 'practical refusal reason' exists under
s.24AA of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) in relation to
your request.  I have set out my reasons in the attached notice. 

 

The FOI Act requires that you respond to this notice before the end of the
consultation period, which is close of business Australian Eastern
Standard Time (AEST) Wednesday 3 November 2021.

 

As advised in the notice, you may reply to me at this email address
([1][Department of Home Affairs request email]).

 

 

Signed electronically

 

Glen

Position number 60081621

Authorised Decision Maker | Freedom of Information Section

FOI and Records Management Branch

Data Division | Strategy and National Resilience Group

Department of Home Affairs

 

 

OFFICIAL

 

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
the individual or entity to whom it is addressed. If you have received
this email by mistake, please advise the sender and delete the message and
attachments immediately.  This email, including attachments, may contain
confidential, sensitive, legally privileged and/or copyright information.
 

Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of this information
by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. 
The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  

Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
email.

References

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Dear FOI,

Thank you for your email. I do not agree with your assertion that “The diversion of resources identified in the various points above would result in a substantial and significant drain on the capacity of the business areas within the Department, to the extent that it would substantially detract from the area’s ability to carry out their normal functions and activities.”

Yesterday you wrote to me to ask me to agree to an extension of 30 days beyond the statutory timeframe for responding to my request. Yesterday you did not indicate that the scope of my request was such that it would “substantially detract from the area’s ability to carry out their normal functions and activities”. It is only after I refused to agree to an extension of the timeframe that you are now suggesting that the scope of my request is problematic.

Furthermore, responding to reasonable requests for public access to information held by the department is, or at least should be, part of the “normal functions and activities” of the department. If the Department of Home Affairs lacks the resources to respond to a freedom of information request while also carrying out the department’s other activities then there is something very wrong. Frankly, it is not plausible that responding to this request would have any meaningful impact on the department’s ability to carry out its functions. Your assertion otherwise is an attempt to subvert the FOI process.

While I do not agree with your assertion that processing my original request would have an impact on the department’s ability to perform its “normal functions and activities” and I reserve my right to request a review of your decision, in the interest in progressing with this I will agree to reduce the scope of this request.

Please provide any correspondence between the department and Atlassian about the COVIDSafe app between the 1st of March 2020 and the 31st of March 2020.

Specifically:
- any emails sent from the department to Atlassian or from Atlassian to the department containing any of the terms: COVIDSafe, Trace Together, Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus,
- any emails in reply,
- any attachments.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

1 Attachment

OFFICIAL

In reply please quote:

FOI Request:         FA 21/09/01245

File Number:          OBJ2021/29399

 

Dear Concerned citizen,

 

I refer to your FOI request received on 24 September 2021 

 

The Department has made a decision on this request. Please find attached
the decision record and any documents released under the FOI Act.  

 

This request has been closed in our system.

 

Signed electronically

 

Glen

Position number 60081621

Authorised Decision Maker | Freedom of Information Section

FOI and Records Management Branch

Data Division | Strategy and National Resilience Group

Department of Home Affairs

 

 

OFFICIAL

 

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
the individual or entity to whom it is addressed. If you have received
this email by mistake, please advise the sender and delete the message and
attachments immediately.  This email, including attachments, may contain
confidential, sensitive, legally privileged and/or copyright information.
 

Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of this information
by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. 
The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  

Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
email.

Dear Department of Home Affairs,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Department of Home Affairs's handling of my FOI request 'Correspondence with Atlassian about COVIDSafe'.

Frankly, I am struggling to understand the process at which the 'decision maker' has arrived at a 'decision' with respect to my freedom of information request. I honestly wonder if the 'decision maker' has taken this process seriously.

My original request (made on the 24th of September) was for (and I quote):

"Could you please provide any correspondence between the department and Atlassian about the COVIDSafe app?

Specifically:
- any emails sent from the department to Atlassian or from Atlassian to the department containing any of the terms: COVIDSafe, Trace Together, Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus,
- any emails in reply,
- any attachments"

The first response I received from the Department suggested that I contact the Department of Health as they are now responsible for the COVIDSafe app. I explained that (and I quote) "In evidence to the Senate Select Committee on COVID 19 on the 5th of May 2020, the department’s secretary indicated that the Department of Home Affairs “engaged with some commercial parties to assist in the conceptual prototype. That was all handed off to the DTA in early April". I explained my request related to any correspondence between the department of Home Affairs and Atlassian as it related to this conceptual prototype.

The next response I received from the Department indicated that the department would not meet the statutory timeframes in responding to my request. I responded that my expectation was that the statutory timeframes would be met.

The next response I received indicated that the "decision maker" intended to refuse my request on the grounds that initial searches had identified 889 pages of documents and that to examine them in detail would (and I quote) "result in a substantial and significant drain on the capacity of the business areas within the department, to the extent that it would substantially detract from the area's ability to carry out their normal functions". I replied that it is not believable that responding to a freedom of information request would interfere with the department carrying out its normal functions. However, in the interest of helping the process to proceed I agreed to narrow the scope of my request to (and I quote):

"Please provide any correspondence between the department and Atlassian about the COVIDSafe app between the 1st of March 2020 and the 31st of March 2020.

Specifically:
- any emails sent from the department to Atlassian or from Atlassian to the department containing any of the terms: COVIDSafe, Trace Together, Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus,
- any emails in reply,
- any attachments."

The final decision incorrectly states that I narrowed the scope of my request to (and I quote):

"Please provide any correspondence between the department and Atlassian about the COVIDSafe app between the 1st of March 2020 and the 31st of March 2020."

It fails to include the sentence "Specifically:
- any emails sent from the department to Atlassian or from Atlassian to the department containing any of the terms: COVIDSafe, Trace Together, Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus,
- any emails in reply,
- any attachments".

In reviewing this decision, could you please consider:
- the fact that the initial responses I received seemed focussed on dismissing the request on various questionable grounds rather than genuinely attempting to identify the requested information,
- the fact that the refusal incorrectly states the revised scope of my request, and that
- I only agreed to narrow the scope of my request because of the threat that my request would be refused if I did not agree.

Specifically, in reviewing the decision could you answer the question:
- Did the decision maker search for correspondence using all of the search terms contained in my revised scope (COVIDSafe, Trace Together, Bluetooth, Contact Tracing, covidcare, coronavirus)?
- Or did the decision maker only search for correspondence using the incorrectly stated version of the scope quoted in the decision to refuse my request?

If all of the search terms were not used then could you please repeat the search using all of the terms?

If all of the search terms were used could you please consider whether it was appropriate to refuse my request when no documents were identified using the revised scope? I would have thought a more sensible response would be to let me know that no documents could be identified during this period and instead offering to consider some of the 889 pages of documents that were identified in the initial search.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/c...

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

** This is an automated response. Please do not reply to this email **

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

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FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL

In reply please quote:

FOI request: FA 21/09/01245-R1

File number: OBJ2021/29399

 

Dear Concerned Citizen

Acknowledgement of Freedom of Information internal review request

 

This email is to acknowledge that the Department of Home Affairs (the
Department) has received your request for an internal review of an access
refusal decision under section 54 of the Freedom of Information Act 1982
(the FOI Act).

The decision under review is the Department’s decision on 26 October 2021.

Timeframe for receiving your decision

The statutory timeframe for processing an internal review request is 30
days from the date on which the request was received by the Department.
The Department received the internal review request on 26 October 2021.

Review rights

Your review rights in relation to your internal review request are
available on the website of the Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner [1]here.

Contacting the FOI Section

Should you wish to discuss your request you may contact the FOI Section at
[2][email address].

 

Regards,

 

Dale

Position No. 60107416

FOI Officer, Reviews Team

FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division

Strategy and National Resilience

Department of Home Affairs

Email: [3][email address]

 

OFFICIAL

 

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
the individual or entity to whom it is addressed. If you have received
this email by mistake, please advise the sender and delete the message and
attachments immediately.  This email, including attachments, may contain
confidential, sensitive, legally privileged and/or copyright information.
 

Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of this information
by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. 
The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  

Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
email.

References

Visible links
1. https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...
2. mailto:[email address]
3. mailto:[email address]

Shelley Napper,

5 Attachments

Our reference: RQ21/03766

Agency reference: FA 21/09/01245-R1

Concerned Citizen

Sent by email: [FOI #7892 email]

Extension of time application by Department of Home Affairs

Dear Concerned Citizen

 

I write to advise that on 29 November 2021, the Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner (the OAIC) received an application from the
Department of Home Affairs (the Department) for an extension of time, to
process your internal review request of 26 October 2021.

 

The Department has applied for an extension of time under s 54D of the
Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth) because it has been unable to
finalise your request within the initial decision period.

 

The Department has advised the OAIC that:

 

o this non personal request required requesting a search of internal
email systems
o while the Department waited for those results to be returned, the
Department analysed data from the previous request
o on receiving the results, 41 items were identified, and 71 folios were
found to match the scope of the request, and
o on assessing these files, consultation is now required before release.

 

The Department has requested an extension to 25 December 2021. The
decision maker will take any comments you may have to make into account
when deciding the application.

 

Please respond to this email by close of business 6 December 2021. If I do
not hear from you by this date, the decision maker will proceed to make a
decision on the basis of the information provided to the OAIC by the
Department.

 

You will be notified of the decision once the matter has been finalised.

 

Further information about extension of time requests may be found on our
website at [1]Extensions of time.

Contact

If you have any questions, please contact me by return email. In all
correspondence, please include reference number at the top of this email.

 

Kind regards

 

[2][IMG]   Shelley Napper  | 
Assistant Director

Investigations and
Compliance

Freedom of Information
Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW
2001  |  [3]oaic.gov.au
[7]Subscribe [8]Subscribe to
[4]Facebook | [5]LinkedIn | [6]Twitter |   icon Information  
Matters
 

 

 

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5. https://www.linkedin.com/company/office-...
6. https://twitter.com/OAICgov
8. https://www.oaic.gov.au/updates/sign-up/

Dear Shelley Napper,

Thank you for your email. My expectation is that the Department of Home Affairs is able to meet the statutory timeframes. They requested an extension immediately upon receiving my original request and it feels as if the request for extensions of time beyond the statutory timeframes as a matter of course is simply used as a way of frustrating the process for applicants.

Having said that I am interested in an outcome where a decision maker is able to make a considered decision about providing access to the information I requested so I am willing to agree to an extension.

The request was for an extension till the 25th of December which is Christmas Day. To ensure the process isn’t further delayed by the Christmas shutdown could the department please respond by the 20th of December?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Summen Sarwar,

7 Attachments

Our reference: RQ21/03766

Agency reference: FA 21/09/01245-R1

Concerned Citizen

By email: [1][FOI #7892 email]

Extension of time application by Department of Home Affairs

Dear Concerned Citizen

Please find attached a decision of today’s date for an extension of time
from the Department of Home Affairs.

Sincerely

[2][IMG]   Summen Sarwar   |  Administrative
Assistant (Legal)

Significant and Systemic Reviews and
Regulatory Advice
Freedom of Information Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [3]oaic.gov.au

+61 2 9284 9815  | 
[4][email address]  
[5][IMG] | [6][IMG] | [7][IMG] |   [8]Subscribe to Information
Matters

 

 

 

 

From: Shelley Napper
Sent: Thursday, 2 December 2021 4:01 PM
To: '[FOI #7892 email]'
<[FOI #7892 email]>
Subject: RQ21/03766 - Extension of time application by Department of Home
Affairs - Consultation [SEC=OFFICIAL]

 

Our reference: RQ21/03766

Agency reference: FA 21/09/01245-R1

Concerned Citizen

Sent by email: [9][FOI #7892 email]

Extension of time application by Department of Home Affairs

Dear Concerned Citizen

 

I write to advise that on 29 November 2021, the Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner (the OAIC) received an application from the
Department of Home Affairs (the Department) for an extension of time, to
process your internal review request of 26 October 2021.

 

The Department has applied for an extension of time under s 54D of the
Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth) because it has been unable to
finalise your request within the initial decision period.

 

The Department has advised the OAIC that:

 

o this non personal request required requesting a search of internal
email systems
o while the Department waited for those results to be returned, the
Department analysed data from the previous request
o on receiving the results, 41 items were identified, and 71 folios were
found to match the scope of the request, and
o on assessing these files, consultation is now required before release.

 

The Department has requested an extension to 25 December 2021. The
decision maker will take any comments you may have to make into account
when deciding the application.

 

Please respond to this email by close of business 6 December 2021. If I do
not hear from you by this date, the decision maker will proceed to make a
decision on the basis of the information provided to the OAIC by the
Department.

 

You will be notified of the decision once the matter has been finalised.

 

Further information about extension of time requests may be found on our
website at [10]Extensions of time.

Contact

If you have any questions, please contact me by return email. In all
correspondence, please include reference number at the top of this email.

 

Kind regards

 

[11][IMG]   Shelley Napper  | 
Assistant Director

Investigations and
Compliance

Freedom of
Information
Regulatory Group

Office of the
Australian
Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney
NSW 2001  |
 [12]oaic.gov.au
[17]Subscribe
[13]Facebook | [14]LinkedIn | [15]Twitter |   [16]Subscribe to  
icon Information
Matters
 

 

 

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References

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11. https://www.oaic.gov.au/
12. http://www.oaic.gov.au/
13. http://www.facebook.com/OAICgov
14. https://www.linkedin.com/company/office-...
15. https://twitter.com/OAICgov
17. https://www.oaic.gov.au/updates/sign-up/

Dear Summen Sarwar,

I am expecting a response to my request for an internal review today as agreed.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI,

This is now overdue.

On the 3rd of December the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner wrote to the Department of Home Affairs and to me to provide for an extension of time to respond to my request for an internal review. The agreement was that the department would respond by the 20th of December.

When will you respond to my request for an internal review?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Summen Sarwar,

6 Attachments

Dear Concerned Citizen

Thank you for your email.

Please be advised that you may wish to contact the Department of Home
Affairs directly regarding an update on the progress of your internal
review application.

If did not receive a decision from the Department by 20 December 2021, or
if you disagree with the Department’s decision, you may wish to seek
Information Commissioner review (IC review) [1]here.

 

Further information on [2]applying for IC review is available on the OAIC
[3]website.

 

If you have any further questions, please contact [4][email address].

  

Kind regards

 

 

[5][IMG]   Summen Sarwar   |  Administrative
Assistant (Legal)

Investigations and Compliance
Freedom of Information Regulatory
Group

Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [6]oaic.gov.au

+61 2 9284 9815  | 
[7][email address]  
[8][IMG] | [9][IMG] | [10][IMG] |   [11]Subscribe to Information
Matters

Please note the OAIC will be closed from 25 December 2021 and will reopen
on 4 January 2022.

[12]Happy holidays from the OAIC card showing twinkling lights on red
background

 

 

 

show quoted sections

Dear Department of Home Affairs,

This is now overdue. When do you intend to respond?

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

** This is an automated response. Please do not reply to this email **

 

Office closures during the Christmas period

Our offices will be closed on the 27, 28 & 29 of December 2021, and again
on 3 January 2022.

 

If you are sending an email to us during this time please note that we
will not be able to respond to your enquiry until we re-open.

 

While we will endeavour to action all correspondence as soon as possible,
you may experience delays due to our office closure and the large volume
of emails received during this period.

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

 

Your email has been received by the Department of Home Affairs Freedom of
Information (FOI) Section.

 

The FOI section only responds to valid FOI requests and other matters
relating to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).  Visit the
FOI Information on our Website for more information on what [1]information
can be accessed under the FOI Act 1982.

 

What is a valid FOI request?

 

A valid FOI request may be for:

- documents you previously provided to the Department as part of a visa
application

- a copy of a decision record made by the Department

- statistical information held by the Department

- papers or briefings the Department prepared.

 

If your email is a valid FOI request, the Department will contact you
shortly to acknowledge your request.

 

A valid FOI request must:

o Be in writing and state the request is for consideration under the FOI
Act.
o Have enough information for us to be able to identify the documents
you are seeking.
o Provide a physical or electronic address where we can send our
decision.

 

Do not send duplicate emails as this may cause longer delays in processing
times.

 

What is an invalid FOI request?

 

Invalid FOI requests may include:

- Making a visa application

- Seeking evidence of your Australian Citizenship

- Seeking information about traveling to or departing Australia.

 

If your email is not specific an FOI request or FOI related matter, the
FOI section will not respond.

 

What happens next?

Once we receive and have registered your FOI request, we will send you an
acknowledgment letter by email. Read the acknowledgment letter carefully
for further instructions.

 

FOI requests are generally processed in the order they are received.

 

We will contact you as soon as the Department has assessed your request
under the FOI Act.

 

We’re responding to a large volume of requests

Due to the current high volume of requests, we will not provide progress
up-dates on current FOI requests.  This is to ensure we are able to
process as many requests as possible, including yours.

 

If processing your request is going to take us a lot of time and because
it is large or unspecific, it may be refused.  

 

Still have a question or request?

If you still have a question, which has not been answered above, and which
is about the work of the Department, use our general enquiries web page

[2]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...

 

You may be able to resolve your enquiry faster using these other resources

 

We only action and respond to FOI requests that are valid under the
Freedom of Information Act 1982. You may be able to resolve your enquiry
faster by using these resources:

 

General information about travelling to Australia:

 

The Department of Home Affairs, “Entering Australia” site
[3]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...

 

·       For visa and our requirements for entry to Australia
[4]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...

For a copy of your visa refusal or visa grant letter you should contact
the office where you lodged your visa application. 

·       To check your current visa details and conditions use the
Department’s Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) portal which can
be accessed [5]here

·       If you are experiencing technical difficulties in lodging your
visa application through ImmiAccount, submit your concerns through the
ImmiAccount Technical Support Form, which is accessible [6]here.

·       For evidence of your Australian Citizenship please refer [7]here.
The FOI Section does not process these requests.

·       For movement records or travel history complete the online
International Movement Records form [8]here. The FOI Section does not
process these requests.

·       To update your details, including your Passport details, you can
notify the Department [9]here. The FOI Section does not process these
requests.

 

 

We appreciate your feedback         

We appreciate your feedback to help improve our services.

 

If you would like to provide feedback to us please use our Compliments,
complaints and suggestions form.
[10]https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

 

 

Thank you

Information updated 24 December 2021

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
the individual or entity to whom it is addressed. If you have received
this email by mistake, please advise the sender and delete the message and
attachments immediately.  This email, including attachments, may contain
confidential, sensitive, legally privileged and/or copyright information.
 

Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of this information
by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. 
The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  

Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
email.

References

Visible links
1. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/access-an...
2. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
3. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
4. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...
5. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/al...
6. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
7. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/citizens...
8. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
9. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/change-i...
10. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

Dear Department of Home Affairs,

Could you please let me know when you intend to provide your response to my request for an internal review?

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

** This is an automated response. Please do not reply to this email **

 

Office closures during the Christmas period

Our offices will be closed on the 27, 28 & 29 of December 2021, and again
on 3 January 2022.

 

If you are sending an email to us during this time please note that we
will not be able to respond to your enquiry until we re-open.

 

While we will endeavour to action all correspondence as soon as possible,
you may experience delays due to our office closure and the large volume
of emails received during this period.

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

 

Your email has been received by the Department of Home Affairs Freedom of
Information (FOI) Section.

 

The FOI section only responds to valid FOI requests and other matters
relating to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).  Visit the
FOI Information on our Website for more information on what [1]information
can be accessed under the FOI Act 1982.

 

What is a valid FOI request?

 

A valid FOI request may be for:

- documents you previously provided to the Department as part of a visa
application

- a copy of a decision record made by the Department

- statistical information held by the Department

- papers or briefings the Department prepared.

 

If your email is a valid FOI request, the Department will contact you
shortly to acknowledge your request.

 

A valid FOI request must:

o Be in writing and state the request is for consideration under the FOI
Act.
o Have enough information for us to be able to identify the documents
you are seeking.
o Provide a physical or electronic address where we can send our
decision.

 

Do not send duplicate emails as this may cause longer delays in processing
times.

 

What is an invalid FOI request?

 

Invalid FOI requests may include:

- Making a visa application

- Seeking evidence of your Australian Citizenship

- Seeking information about traveling to or departing Australia.

 

If your email is not specific an FOI request or FOI related matter, the
FOI section will not respond.

 

What happens next?

Once we receive and have registered your FOI request, we will send you an
acknowledgment letter by email. Read the acknowledgment letter carefully
for further instructions.

 

FOI requests are generally processed in the order they are received.

 

We will contact you as soon as the Department has assessed your request
under the FOI Act.

 

We’re responding to a large volume of requests

Due to the current high volume of requests, we will not provide progress
up-dates on current FOI requests.  This is to ensure we are able to
process as many requests as possible, including yours.

 

If processing your request is going to take us a lot of time and because
it is large or unspecific, it may be refused.  

 

Still have a question or request?

If you still have a question, which has not been answered above, and which
is about the work of the Department, use our general enquiries web page

[2]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...

 

You may be able to resolve your enquiry faster using these other resources

 

We only action and respond to FOI requests that are valid under the
Freedom of Information Act 1982. You may be able to resolve your enquiry
faster by using these resources:

 

General information about travelling to Australia:

 

The Department of Home Affairs, “Entering Australia” site
[3]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...

 

·       For visa and our requirements for entry to Australia
[4]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...

For a copy of your visa refusal or visa grant letter you should contact
the office where you lodged your visa application. 

·       To check your current visa details and conditions use the
Department’s Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) portal which can
be accessed [5]here

·       If you are experiencing technical difficulties in lodging your
visa application through ImmiAccount, submit your concerns through the
ImmiAccount Technical Support Form, which is accessible [6]here.

·       For evidence of your Australian Citizenship please refer [7]here.
The FOI Section does not process these requests.

·       For movement records or travel history complete the online
International Movement Records form [8]here. The FOI Section does not
process these requests.

·       To update your details, including your Passport details, you can
notify the Department [9]here. The FOI Section does not process these
requests.

 

 

We appreciate your feedback         

We appreciate your feedback to help improve our services.

 

If you would like to provide feedback to us please use our Compliments,
complaints and suggestions form.
[10]https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

 

 

Thank you

Information updated 24 December 2021

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
the individual or entity to whom it is addressed. If you have received
this email by mistake, please advise the sender and delete the message and
attachments immediately.  This email, including attachments, may contain
confidential, sensitive, legally privileged and/or copyright information.
 

Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of this information
by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. 
The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  

Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
email.

References

Visible links
1. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/access-an...
2. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
3. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
4. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...
5. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/al...
6. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
7. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/citizens...
8. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
9. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/change-i...
10. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

FOI request: FA 21/09/01245
File number: OBJ2021/29399

Dear Concerned Citizen,

Thank you for your email.

Your internal review request is being processed. Documents have been located and require consultation.

We will provide you with further updates next week.

Apologies for the delay.

Regards.

Antonette
Freedom of Information
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department of Home Affairs
OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

This is long overdue. In response to your request for an extension of time to respond to my request for an internal review the OAIC wrote to you to stipulate that you needed to respond by the 20th of December. It is now almost 1 month beyond that date.

When will you respond?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

You still have not responded to my request for an internal review despite the OAIC specifying that you should do so by the 20th of December (one month ago).

Last week you said “We will provide you with further updates next week” and yet you have not done so.

I don’t understand. Do you think that complying with agreed timeframes for providing your response is optional? It is not. It is a statutory requirement. Are you just completely disregarding the FOI laws and the timeframe agreed with the OAIC?

Once again I ask: when do you intend to respond to my request for an internal review?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

It is the end of the week in which you said “We will provide you with further updates” and you have not done so.

I would like to state clearly for the record that this is not acceptable and I expect you to meet the statutory timeframes and the timeframe that was agreed with the OAIC.

You must now provide your response to my request for an internal review without further delay.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

My apologies for not emailing you last week and for the delay in the processing of your internal review request.

You request is being actively progressed with a view to having a decision as soon as possible.

Regards.

Antonette
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

Another week has passed and you have still failed to respond to my request for an internal review despite the OAIC indicating that you must respond by the 20th of December.

I am reiterating my expectation is that you will respond within the statutory timeframe. Provide your response now please.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Department of Home Affairs

2 Attachments

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    RE FW Freedom of Information request Correspondence with Atlassian about COVIDSafe SEC OFFICIAL Sensitive.txt

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Dear Department of Home Affairs,

Could you please provide an update on when you plan to respond to my request for an internal review:
https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/c...

In response to your request for an extension of time I agreed to an extension till the 20th of December (so as to avoid delays over the Christmas period). The OAIC directed you to reply by this date.

It is now February and I have still not received a response.

When will you reply?

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

** This is an automated response. Please do not reply to this email **

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

 

Your email has been received by the Department of Home Affairs Freedom of
Information (FOI) Section.

 

The FOI section only responds to valid FOI requests and other matters
relating to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).  Visit the
FOI Information on our Website for more information on what [1]information
can be accessed under the FOI Act 1982.

 

What is a valid FOI request?

 

A valid FOI request may be for:

- documents you previously provided to the Department as part of a visa
application

- a copy of a decision record made by the Department

- statistical information held by the Department

- papers or briefings the Department prepared.

 

If your email is a valid FOI request, the Department will contact you
shortly to acknowledge your request.

 

A valid FOI request must:

o Be in writing and state the request is for consideration under the FOI
Act.
o Have enough information for us to be able to identify the documents
you are seeking.
o Provide a physical or electronic address where we can send our
decision.

 

Do not send duplicate emails as this may cause longer delays in processing
times.

 

What is an invalid FOI request?

 

Invalid FOI requests may include:

- Making a visa application

- Seeking evidence of your Australian Citizenship

- Seeking information about traveling to or departing Australia.

 

If your email is not specific an FOI request or FOI related matter, the
FOI section will not respond.

 

What happens next?

Once we receive and have registered your FOI request, we will send you an
acknowledgment letter by email. Read the acknowledgment letter carefully
for further instructions.

 

FOI requests are generally processed in the order they are received.

 

We will contact you as soon as the Department has assessed your request
under the FOI Act.

 

We’re responding to a large volume of requests

Due to the current high volume of requests, we will not provide progress
up-dates on current FOI requests.  This is to ensure we are able to
process as many requests as possible, including yours.

 

If processing your request is going to take us a lot of time and because
it is large or unspecific, it may be refused.  

 

Still have a question or request?

If you still have a question, which has not been answered above, and which
is about the work of the Department, use our general enquiries web page

[2]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...

 

You may be able to resolve your enquiry faster using these other resources

 

We only action and respond to FOI requests that are valid under the
Freedom of Information Act 1982. You may be able to resolve your enquiry
faster by using these resources:

 

General information about travelling to Australia:

 

The Department of Home Affairs, “Entering Australia” site
[3]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...

 

·       For visa and our requirements for entry to Australia
[4]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...

For a copy of your visa refusal or visa grant letter you should contact
the office where you lodged your visa application. 

·       To check your current visa details and conditions use the
Department’s Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) portal which can
be accessed [5]here

·       If you are experiencing technical difficulties in lodging your
visa application through ImmiAccount, submit your concerns through the
ImmiAccount Technical Support Form, which is accessible [6]here.

·       For evidence of your Australian Citizenship please refer [7]here.
The FOI Section does not process these requests.

·       For movement records or travel history complete the online
International Movement Records form [8]here. The FOI Section does not
process these requests.

·       To update your details, including your Passport details, you can
notify the Department [9]here. The FOI Section does not process these
requests.

 

 

We appreciate your feedback         

We appreciate your feedback to help improve our services.

 

If you would like to provide feedback to us please use our Compliments,
complaints and suggestions form.
[10]https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

 

 

Thank you

Information updated 11 January 2022

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
the individual or entity to whom it is addressed. If you have received
this email by mistake, please advise the sender and delete the message and
attachments immediately.  This email, including attachments, may contain
confidential, sensitive, legally privileged and/or copyright information.
 

Any review, retransmission, dissemination or other use of this information
by persons or entities other than the intended recipient is prohibited. 
The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  

Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
email.

References

Visible links
1. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/access-an...
2. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
3. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
4. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...
5. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/al...
6. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
7. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/citizens...
8. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
9. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/change-i...
10. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen,

Thank you for your email.

The documents located are complex and technical and require consultation with other business areas and third parties.

I am sorry we are unable to provide you with a specific date at this time. We will endeavour to finalise your request as soon as possible.

Regards.

Antonette
Assistant Director, Freedom of Information
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department of Home Affairs
E: [email address]

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

It is not open to you to simply ignore the FOI Act and the timeframe agreed with the OAIC. You are required to respond by the 20th of December. The reasons you have provided to justify your refusal to respond within the statutory timeframes could potentially be used as grounds to request an extension of time.

A request for an extension of time was made and I agreed to an extension to the 20th of December. It is now February at the law requires that you respond.

Continued failure to do so shows contempt for the FOI Act.

I expect a response.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

The Department is aware of its obligations under the FOI Act and we are continuing to progress the request with the aim of finalising it as soon as possible.

Under section 54D of the FOI Act the Department is now deemed to have affirmed the original access decision, because we have not made a decision on the internal review by the statutory due date. The effect of section 54D is that you now have the right to seek Information Commissioner review of the Department's "deemed" affirmation decision.

The Information Commissioner has a range of powers that it can use to obtain information from agencies including the power to require agencies to issue a decision and provide a statement of reasons to the applicant within a specific timeframe. The Information Commissioner's powers include the power under section 55R to order an agency to provide documents or make a decision by a specified due date, and it is an offence for an agency (resulting in potential criminal sanctions) for an agency not to comply with a notice under s. 55R.

Information about how to apply for an Information Commissioner review is available on the website of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner here:
https://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-infor...

Claire
FOI Officer, Reviews Team
Department of Home Affairs
E: [email address]

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

I am aware of the fact that under the act you are taken to have made a deemed decision to affirm the initial decision and that I could request a review by the Information Commissioner.

However in correspondence I have received from the department you have indicated that you intend to respond to my request for internal review. You have also indicated that whilst the original decision maker failed to identify any documents within the scope of my request that during the internal review process you have identified documents.

So I have been led to believe based on our correspondence that you intend to respond to my request for review (despite having failed to meet the statutory timeframe) and I am hopeful that your response may include a decision to disclose the documents I have requested.

So at this stage I do not wish to ask the Information Commissioner to review the deemed affirmation of the original decision. I would like you to actually respond with the outcome of the internal review please.

And if the department is aware of its obligations, what is your reason for failing to comply with them?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

Thank you for your email.

You are correct that the obligation to comply with the statutory processing period is one of the Department's obligations under the FOI Act. Other obligations include ensuring that the decision has been correctly made and any exemptions correctly applied.

Due to the nature of the documents within scope, other business areas of the Department need to review the documents so the decision maker can form a position about whether exemptions should be claimed for any parts of the documents. That is the process that is being undertaken at the moment.

Claire
FOI Officer, Reviews Team
E: [email address]

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

Good morning, happy Monday! I have a good feeling about this week. It feels like the week in which you might respond to my request for an internal review.

What do you say?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

Thank you for your email below.

The team has been working on your request and would like to finalise it as soon as possible. However, additional consultations with another government agency and business organisation have to be made in accordance with the FOI Act.

We are committed to providing you a sound and lawful decision in accordance with the FOI Act.

We regret the time it is taking to finalise this request and thank you for your patience.

Regards.

Antonette
E: [email address]

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

Thank you for your email. I appreciate the need to consult and to ensure the response is sound.

However, compliance with the statutory timeframes is not optional. There are mechanisms within the Act for you to request additional time. You know this because you used them to request an extension to the 20th of December which I agreed to. Your continued refusal to respond in a timely manner is treating me, this process and the law with utter contempt. How is it possible that there is a culture within the department whereby you think it is ok to simply decide you don’t want to comply with the law?

Finally, the need to comply with statutory timeframes and the need to ensure your response is sound are not mutually exclusive. It is possible to do both.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Concerned Citizen

Dear Shelley Napper,

In November last year the Department of Home Affairs wrote to you and me to request an extension of time to respond to my request for an Interval Review. At the time I agreed to an extension till the 20th of December so that their response would not be delayed further by the Christmas shutdown. You wrote to the Department of Home Affairs to inform them of the agreed extension indicating that they should respond to me by the 20th of December.

They chose not to respond within the agreed timeframe and have still not responded to my request for an internal review despite indicating to me that they are aware of their obligations under the FOI Act.

They have indicated that they are conducting a review and have now identified documents within the scope of my request but have failed to confirm when they will respond to me.

Could you please follow up with them and remind them once again of their obligations?

Will there be any consequences for the department’s continued refusal to comply with the requirements of the FOI Act?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

5 Attachments

Our reference: RQ21/03766

Agency reference: FA 21/09/01245-R1

Concerned Citizen

By email: [1][FOI #7892 email]

Dear Concerned Citizen

 

Thank you for your email.

 

If did not receive an internal review decision from the Department by 20
December 2021, you may wish to seek Information Commissioner review (IC
review) [2]here.

 

I note that these details were previously provided to you in the OAIC’s
decision letter of 3 December 2021, and by my colleague on 23 December
2021 in response to your email of 20 December 2021.

 

Further information on [3]applying for IC review is available on the OAIC
[4]website.

 

If you have any further questions, please contact [5][email address].

 

Kind regards

 

[6][IMG]   Shelley Napper  |  Assistant
Director

Investigations and Compliance

Freedom of Information
Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian
Information Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW
2001  |  [7]oaic.gov.au

+61 2 9284 9721  | 
[8][email address]
[12]Subscribe [13]Subscribe
[9]Facebook | [10]LinkedIn | [11]Twitter |   icon to Information
Matters

 

 

show quoted sections

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOIDR,

Thank you for your email. I am aware that under the FOI Act a failure to respond within the statutory timeframe can be taken to be a deemed affirmation of the original decision.

However the department have indicated to me on numerous occasions that they intend to respond to my request for an internal review and I am hopeful that when they do so they’ll release the documents they have identified. So at this stage I do not wish to seek an Information Commissioner review.

This provision of the Act that allows an applicant to treat a failure to respond within the statutory timeframe as a deemed affirmation of the original decision should not be used as an excuse by the department to simply ignore their obligations to respond to my request.

So I would very much appreciate it if you would follow up with them to make it clear that the law requires that they respond within agreed timeframes.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

Thank you for your email.

We are committed to complying with the law and it is our utmost desire to finalise a decision on your internal review request as soon as possible.

During the primary decision stage, there are a number of mechanism to extend the statutory due date. For example, a consultation with a third party automatically extends the due date to 30 days. This is in addition to the 30 days that can be granted by the applicant and additional time that can be granted by the OAIC.

With internal reviews, there can only be one extension of time allowed.

The documents we located and identified are complex and involve parties other than Attlassian. We need to allow the third parties time to respond to the consultations.

Regards.

Antonette
Assistant Director, Freedom of Information
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

You state:
“With internal reviews, there can only be one extension of time allowed”.

I agree. You requested that extension last year and I agreed to an extension till the 20th of December.

It is now March. Given that you yourself have informed me that the Act does not allow for further extensions of time then your refusal to provide a response within the agreed timeframe is quite simply contemptuous and a flagrant failure to comply with the law.

I continue to be astonished that a culture exists within the Department of Home Affairs where you feel this is justified.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Summen Sarwar,

5 Attachments

Dear Applicant

Thank you for your email and I apologise for the delay in responding.

I note that you do not wish to seek IC review at this stage.

Please note the OAIC does not routinely follow up on the status of FOI
requests once an extension of time decision has been made and the matter
with the OAIC has been finalised. You may also wish to contact the
Department directly to seek an update on the status of your request.

 

I also note the Department has an ongoing obligation to provide you with
its substantive decision.

If you have any further questions, please contact [1][email address].

Kind regards

 

 

[2][IMG]   Summen Sarwar   |  Assistant Review and
Investigation Advisor

Investigations and Compliance
Freedom of Information Regulatory Group

Office of the Australian Information
Commissioner

GPO Box 5218 Sydney NSW 2001  |
 [3]oaic.gov.au

+61 2 9284 9815  | 
[4][email address]  
[5][IMG] | [6][IMG] | [7][IMG] |   [8]Subscribe to Information
Matters

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

show quoted sections

Concerned Citizen

Dear Department of Home Affairs,

Could you please provide your response to my request for an internal review in relation to my request for information under the FOI Act.

You have acknowledged and the OAIC have reminded you of your ongoing obligation to respond within statutory timeframes.

In response to your request for an extension of time to respond to my request for an internal review I agreed to an extension till the 20th of December last year.

It is now the 22nd of March, three months beyond the agreed date.

Please provide your response now.

The full history of my request is available at:
https://www.righttoknow.org.au/request/c...

Yours faithfully,

Concerned Citizen

FOI, Department of Home Affairs

** This is an automated response. Please do not reply to this email **

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

 

Your email has been received by the Department of Home Affairs Freedom of
Information (FOI) Section.

 

The FOI section only responds to valid FOI requests and other matters
relating to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).  Visit the
FOI Information on our Website for more information on what [1]information
can be accessed under the FOI Act 1982.

 

What is a valid FOI request?

 

A valid FOI request may be for:

- documents you previously provided to the Department as part of a visa
application

- a copy of a decision record made by the Department

- statistical information held by the Department

- papers or briefings the Department prepared.

 

If your email is a valid FOI request, the Department will contact you
shortly to acknowledge your request.

 

A valid FOI request must:

o Be in writing and state the request is for consideration under the FOI
Act.
o Have enough information for us to be able to identify the documents
you are seeking.
o Provide a physical or electronic address where we can send our
decision.

 

Do not send duplicate emails as this may cause longer delays in processing
times.

 

What is an invalid FOI request?

 

Invalid FOI requests may include:

- Making a visa application

- Seeking evidence of your Australian Citizenship

- Seeking information about traveling to or departing Australia.

 

If your email is not specific an FOI request or FOI related matter, the
FOI section will not respond.

 

What happens next?

Once we receive and have registered your FOI request, we will send you an
acknowledgment letter by email. Read the acknowledgment letter carefully
for further instructions.

 

FOI requests are generally processed in the order they are received.

 

We will contact you as soon as the Department has assessed your request
under the FOI Act.

 

We’re responding to a large volume of requests

Due to the current high volume of requests, we will not provide progress
up-dates on current FOI requests.  This is to ensure we are able to
process as many requests as possible, including yours.

 

If processing your request is going to take us a lot of time and because
it is large or unspecific, it may be refused.  

 

Still have a question or request?

If you still have a question, which has not been answered above, and which
is about the work of the Department, use our general enquiries web page

[2]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...

 

You may be able to resolve your enquiry faster using these other resources

 

We only action and respond to FOI requests that are valid under the
Freedom of Information Act 1982. You may be able to resolve your enquiry
faster by using these resources:

 

General information about travelling to Australia:

 

The Department of Home Affairs, “Entering Australia” site
[3]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...

 

·       For visa and our requirements for entry to Australia
[4]https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...

For a copy of your visa refusal or visa grant letter you should contact
the office where you lodged your visa application. 

·       To check your current visa details and conditions use the
Department’s Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) portal which can
be accessed [5]here

·       If you are experiencing technical difficulties in lodging your
visa application through ImmiAccount, submit your concerns through the
ImmiAccount Technical Support Form, which is accessible [6]here.

·       For evidence of your Australian Citizenship please refer [7]here.
The FOI Section does not process these requests.

·       For movement records or travel history complete the online
International Movement Records form [8]here. The FOI Section does not
process these requests.

·       To update your details, including your Passport details, you can
notify the Department [9]here. The FOI Section does not process these
requests.

 

 

We appreciate your feedback         

We appreciate your feedback to help improve our services.

 

If you would like to provide feedback to us please use our Compliments,
complaints and suggestions form.
[10]https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

 

 

Thank you

Information updated 11 January 2022

 

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References

Visible links
1. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/access-an...
2. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
3. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
4. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/ge...
5. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/al...
6. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-sup...
7. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/citizens...
8. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/entering...
9. https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/change-i...
10. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/help-and-...

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

On the 4th of March you wrote to me and said:

“We are committed to complying with the law and it is our utmost desire to finalise a decision on your internal review request as soon as possible.”

Over a week ago I emailed to request an update but did not receive a reply.

It is now the 29th of March and I still have not received a response to my request for an internal review (despite it now being 154 days since I requested an internal review).

When will you respond?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

Another week has passed and I still have not received a response to my request for an internal review despite your email sent a month ago where you said you have an:
"utmost desire to finalise a decision on [my] internal review request as soon as possible".

When will this be? I'd have thought that in the month that has passed since you sent this email it would have in fact been "possible" to finalise a decision. The only explanation for your continued delay in responding is that you weren't entirely honest about your "utmost desire".

This ongoing failure to comply with statutory timeframes is unacceptable.

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

One of the parties we consulted requested for time until end of this week to make submissions regarding the release of their documents. We have followed up today and will accordingly progress the matter.

Thanks and regards.

Antonette
Freedom of Information
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department of Home Affairs
OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

Over a year ago the OAIC completed an investigation into the repeated failure of the Department of Home Affairs to meet its legal obligations under the FOI Act:

https://www.oaic.gov.au/updates/news-and...

This investigation found that the department did “not have adequate governance and systems of accountability in place to comply with statutory time frames for processing FOI requests” and recommended that the department “appoint an “Information Champion” to promote and operationalise its compliance with the FOI Act”.

From your continued failure to respond to my request for an internal review it would seem that nothing has changed.

It is now over a week since you said “We have followed up today and will accordingly progress the matter”.

Could you please provide your response to my request for an internal review today?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

We have been and are actively working on your request, having concluded all consultations with several third parties and other Commonwealth agencies.
We regret the delay in providing you the decision.

As previously advised, you have the right to apply for a review with the OAIC .

Thanks and regards.

Antonette
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

Given:
- that you have been actively working on responding to my request for an internal review,
- you have concluded the consultation with third parties (which was your stated reason for failing to meet the statutory timeframe) and,
- another week has passed since your last email
could you now please provide your response?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

On the 22nd of April (over a month ago now) you wrote:

“We have been and are actively working on your request, having concluded all consultations with several third parties and other Commonwealth agencies.
We regret the delay in providing you the decision.”

Given that you have concluded all consultations and that you regret the delay could you please now provide your decision?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen

FOI Reviews mailbox, Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

Dear Concerned Citizen

The response to consultations have been considered and documents assessed. The decision record is being drafted. We will advise you once we have a definite date of completion.

Thank you for your patience.

Antonette
Assistant Director, Freedom of Information
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy and National Resilience Group
Department of Home Affairs

OFFICIAL: Sensitive

show quoted sections

Concerned Citizen

Dear FOI Reviews mailbox,

On the 13th you wrote to me to say:
“The response to consultations have been considered and documents assessed. The decision record is being drafted”.

It is now the 25th. Could you please provide me with your decision?

Yours sincerely,

Concerned Citizen