Enterprise Agreement ballots - were employees informed of what data about them was used in the ballot?

James Smith made this Freedom of Information request to Australian Bureau of Statistics

The request was refused by Australian Bureau of Statistics.

From: James Smith

Delivered

Dear Australian Bureau of Statistics,

Through a previous FOI request, you have indicated the department has used certain information relating to your employees to conduct your enterprise agreement ballots for at least one enterprise agreement proposed under either the governments current bargaining policy or the one before it.

In one or more of your ballots, I have determined you passed on information about your employees that goes beyond the minimum required in order to conduct the ballots.

This may include information such as classification level, branch within the department, employment type, etc.

I would like to determine to what extent the department explained to employees what information about them was required for ballots, and what information about them was used in ballots.

I would also like to understand the rationale of the department in using employee information to profile employees' votes (in a breakdown of results), and I would like to know who authorised the decision to use such data.

I therefore request:

1. All documents sent to all employees which explain what information about them was passed onto the ballot provider for each ballot.

2. Any documents sent to the relevant decision maker(s) who approved the use of the data that was used in the ballots.

3. Any documents which explain the rational for obtaining breakdowns of votes

4. Any documents which mention benefits to the department or to the bargaining process in obtaining a breakdown of votes.

5. Any documents between the departmental bargaining team and the departmental Executive which discuss breakdowns of votes and suggest how that information should be used or otherwise taken into consideration by the department.

6. Any documents from the APSC that mention what information about employees can or should be used in ballots.

Yours faithfully,

James Smith

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From: Caroline Blink
Australian Bureau of Statistics

Dear Mr Smith

I refer to your application in which you seek access to documents under
the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (ABS reference FOI 201617/61)
regarding:

o 1. All documents sent to all employees which explain what information
about them was passed onto the ballot provider for each ballot.
o 2. Any documents sent to the relevant decision maker(s) who approved
the use of the data that was used in the ballots.
o 3. Any documents which explain the rational for obtaining breakdowns
of votes
o 4. Any documents which mention benefits to the department or to the
bargaining process in obtaining a breakdown of votes.
o 5. Any documents between the departmental bargaining team and the
departmental Executive which discuss breakdowns of votes and suggest
how that information should be used or otherwise taken into
consideration by the department.
o 6. Any documents from the APSC that mention what information about
employees can or should be used in ballots..

Your request was received by the ABS on 4 April 2017 and the 30 day
statutory period for processing your request commenced from that date.  If
this request will take longer than 30 days to process, we will contact you
to negotiate an extension of time.

You will be notified of any charges in accordance with the Freedom of
Information (Fees and Charges) Regulations, should they apply, in relation
to your request as soon as practicable.
Regards

FOI Contact Officer 

Australian Bureau of Statistics 

(P) (02) 6252 7203 

(E) [1][ABS request email]   (W)  [2]www.abs.gov.au

The ABS Privacy Policy outlines how the ABS handles any personal
information that you provide to us.

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[ABS request email]
2. http://www.abs.gov.au/

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From: Danielle Gillett
Australian Bureau of Statistics

Dear Mr Smith
In your FOI request to the ABS you imply that the motive for your request
is that our agency has passed on information about its employees that
'goes beyond the minimum required in order to conduct the ballots'.
As you will be aware from the documents released to you under FOI on 20
March and 30 March 2017, the information the ABS provided to the ballot
company is essential to conduct a ballot and none of the examples you
listed in your request (classification level, branch within the
department, employment type) were provided by the ABS to the ballot
company. The justification for the ABS providing information to the ballot
company is also reflected in the documents released.
We are aware that you have submitted a number of similar requests to other
agencies, can you confirm whether your FOI request was indeed meant for
the ABS?
Should you have any questions regarding this please feel free to contact
the ABS FOI Contact Officer on: 02 6252 7203 or email:
[1][ABS request email]

Kind Regards

FOI Contact Officer 

Australian Bureau of Statistics 

(P) (02) 6252 7203 

(E) [2][ABS request email]   (W)  [3]www.abs.gov.au

The ABS Privacy Policy outlines how the ABS handles any personal
information that you provide to us.

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[ABS request email]
2. mailto:[ABS request email]
3. http://www.abs.gov.au/

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From: James Smith

Delivered

Dear Danielle Gillett,

Thank you for your email.

I apologise, it appears I have my wires crossed and I sent this request to the ABS in error.

This request is withdrawn.

Yours sincerely,

James Smith

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From: Danielle Gillett
Australian Bureau of Statistics


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Dear Mr Smith

Thank you for your prompt reply and clarification, I now take your Freedom
of Information request to be withdrawn.

Kind Regards

FOI Contact Officer 

Australian Bureau of Statistics 

(P) (02) 6252 7203 

(E) [1][ABS request email]   (W)  [2]www.abs.gov.au

The ABS Privacy Policy outlines how the ABS handles any personal
information that you provide to us.

[3]Inactive hide details for James Smith ---10/04/2017 08:23:56 PM---Dear
Danielle Gillett, Thank you for your email.James Smith ---10/04/2017
08:23:56 PM---Dear Danielle Gillett, Thank you for your email.

From: James Smith <[FOI #3340 email]>
To: Danielle Gillett <[email address]>,
Date: 10/04/2017 08:23 PM
Subject: Re: FOI 201617/61 - Further Information

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Dear Danielle Gillett,

Thank you for your email.

I apologise, it appears I have my wires crossed and I sent this request to
the ABS in error.

This request is withdrawn.

Yours sincerely,

James Smith

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