Dear Department of Home Affairs,
I seek information on the number of EOIs that were issued an invitation to apply for a subclass 190 and subclass 491 visas nominated by the VIC government in the period between 1/03/2020 -31/12/2020 (or the total number granted during this period and number of applications still waiting to be processed), showing:
a. date of invitation
b. ANZSCO code of occupation
c. occupation name
d. Nationality of citizenship/originating country
e. primary applicant's English proficiency
In reply please quote:
FOI Request: FA 21/03/00656
Offer to Withdraw Freedom of Information Access Request
I refer to your correspondence of 06 March 2021 seeking access to documents held by the Department of Home Affairs (the Department) under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).
Your request has been allocated the FOI reference number referred to above. Please include your FOI reference number in all correspondence with the Freedom of Information Section.
As you may be aware, earlier this year the Department launched a dashboard on its SkillSelect website to provide visa Expression of Interest (EOI) statistics. The Department has undertaken a review of the SkillSelect Dashboard to ensure that there is no reasonable chance of an individual being re-identified from the EOI statistics.
The dashboard is now available again and can be accessed via the Department’s SkillSelect web page and comprises a comprehensive library of historic and current statistics in relation to Expressions of Interest (EOIs). The dashboard is a one-stop shop for SkillSelect EOI statistics and is freely available on demand, without any need to formally request the statistics and wait for such a request to be processed. Bypassing the FOI process will significantly reduce delays in obtaining the same information as has previously been provided in response to FOI requests.
As this information is now publically available, you may wish to withdraw you FOI request. If you do not advise the Department that you wish to continue with this FOI request within 5 days of this email, your request will be taken to have been withdrawn.
The Department’s handling of personal information is regulated by the Privacy Act 1988 (the Privacy Act). Guidance published by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner is that information will be de-identified, and therefore not subject to the protections in the Privacy Act, where the risk of an individual being re-identified is very low. De-identification is not a fixed state. Rather, re-identification risks and their controls require ongoing monitoring and review.
The Department’s view is that the current controls are appropriate to reduce the risk that an individual can be re-identified from the statistics accessible from the SkillSelect Dashboard to very low.
Contacting the FOI Section
Should you wish to discuss your request you may contact the FOI Section at [Department of Home Affairs request email]
Freedom of Information Section
FOI and Records Management Branch | Data Division
Strategy & Law Enforcement Group