Documents not available for download from your FOI log or reasoning

Posty made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Health

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

From: Posty


Dear FOI Department,

It has been noticed, that in some occasions, there are documents on your Freedom Of Information Disclosure Log where you have put the most redundant text next to FOI disclosures—the equivalent of “if you would like access to these documents, please email/contact us for access”.

Any person reviewing the information on that site would of course be after the documents. It is puzzling that, on some occasions, you have made the documents available and others not.

I believe this is not in the spirit of the FOI act section 11C, and thus I request—under the Freedom of Information Act 1982—copies of the following documents:

All documents as is (that is, redacted or unredacted) from all previously made decisions on your department's FOI log that are currently not available for download direct from the website.

My preferred method of delivery for this information is for it to be placed on your department's Freedom of Information disclosure log web page as per part A) of 11C of the FOI Act.

Should this request be successful you can put a simple list of the documents that were made available from the request, or whatever is most expedient, on the log.

I apologise for my pessimism, but past FOI experiences have led me to believe this request may elicit a response similar to “this request would divert too many resources of your department to complete”. Should you be thinking this, you have nobody to blame but yourselves—your department made this metaphorical bed.

Should you be seriously considering a practical refusal, my alternative request is for any documents that your department holds relating to the decision to include text on your freedom of information disclosure log similar to "contact us for access to this document".

In addition I request the total of the number of times any member of the public has asked for access to each said non-website published successful for documents on the FOI disclosure log other than the original successful applicant.

I do accept there is a very remote possibility there is a “Good Reason” for these not being available, and I hope these are contained within the documents provided as I cannot foresee any.

In the interests of expediency, I am willing to consider Administrative Access to said documents, should the document be provided within 30 days ( plus any public holidays in-between) of the sending of this email. After this time - the FOI Act applies as normal in all instances and any requests for extension will be denied without a supplied very good reason.



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From: FOI
Department of Health

Under its Enterprise Agreement,  the Department of Health is on Christmas
shutdown between 25 December 2018 to 1 January 2019 (inclusive) – eight


Any FOI requests received by the FOI inbox during this period will not be
actioned until staff return to work on Wednesday 2 January 2019. FOI
processing deadlines remain the same for FOI requests received during the
shutdown period. To assist in processing your application, please submit
your application on or after 2 January 2019.  If you submit an FOI request
during the shutdown period,  we will take it that you agree to extending
the FOI decision deadline to reflect the impact of the Christmas shutdown
period on FOI processing, unless you indicate otherwise in your FOI


We thank you for your understanding over the festive period.


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From: FOI
Department of Health

Dear Mr Posty

I am writing to notify you that the Department of Health (Department) has received your request (in your below email) for access to documents under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act).

The FOI Unit is processing your request on as an administrative release and are currently working on uploading documents to the Department's disclosure log.

The Department does not record the number of requests made for documents to be uploaded on the disclosure log as this is not a mandatory requirement.

You can contact the FOI Unit on (02) 6289 1666 or via email at [email address], should you have any enquiries.


FOI Unit

Legal Advice & Legislation Branch
Legal & Assurance Division
Australian Government Department of Health
T: (02) 6289 1666 |E: [Health request email]
PO Box 9848, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia

The Department of Health acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, and their continuing connection to land, sea and community. We pay our respects to them and their cultures, and to elders both past and present. 

If you receive this email in error, please delete it and contact the sender immediately.

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Posty left an annotation ()

The “not recording the number of requests” comment is not a good sign.

Yes, technically they don’t, but had I asked for copies of them that would have been redacted due to personal info - to even refuse its common to enumerate the number of documents.

We’ll see though.

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Things to do with this request

Department of Health only: