Mental health of asylum seekers

Alessandra Melville made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Home Affairs

The request was refused by Department of Home Affairs.

From: Alessandra Melville

Delivered

Dear Department of Immigration and Border Protection,

I am wanting to obtain documents regarding the number of admissions to health clinics due to mental health issues of asylum seekers residing on Christmas Island from 2013-2014

Yours faithfully,
Alessandra Melville

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From: FOI


Attachment Acknowledgement of FOI Request.pdf
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UNCLASSIFIED

Our references: FA 14/10/00419; ADF2014/36668

 

Dear Alessandra Melville

 

Please find attached the acknowledgement of receipt for your recent FOI
Request. 

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

Penelope Robb
FOI Helpdesk

FOI and Privacy Policy Section

Parliamentary and Executive Coordination Branch | Immigration and Border
Protection Portfolio

E: [1][email address]

 

UNCLASSIFIED

Important Notice: If you have received this email by mistake, please
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including attachments, may contain confidential, sensitive, legally
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and/or copyright information.  Any review, retransmission, dissemination
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policy can be viewed on the department's website at www.immi.gov.au.  See:
http://www.immi.gov.au/functional/privac...

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From: FOI

UNCLASSIFIED

Our references: FA 14/10/00419;  ADF2014/36668

 

Dear Ms Melville,

 

Re: Your Freedom of Information request

 

I am writing to inform you that I have been appointed as the authorised
decision maker for your FOI request, seeking access to:

 

I am wanting to obtain documents regarding the number of admissions to
health clinics due to mental health issues of asylum seekers residing on
Christmas Island from 2013-2014

 

As part of the department’s FOI service standard, I will update you every
14 days regarding the progress of your request, however please do not
hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or wish to discuss the
request in the interim.

 

I am writing to advise you that DIBP has not as yet identified all the
relevant documents. As a result, I am in consultation with the relevant
business areas regarding the searches for relevant documents

 

The current due date for your request is Saturday 8 November 2014.  Due to
the number of requests currently being processed by our office, we may not
be able to finalise your request by the original due date. 

 

The department seeks your agreement (under s.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 Monday 8 November 2014.

 

It would assist the department in managing its FOI caseload if you could
provide a response to this request by close of business, Friday 7 November
2014.

 

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you wish to discuss.

 

 

Regards

 

Shannon Bevan

FOI Officer

FOI and Privacy Policy Section

Parliamentary and Executive Coordination Branch | Immigration and Border
Protection Portfolio

T: 02 6264 4667

E: [DIBP request email]

 

UNCLASSIFIED

Important Notice: 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.  DIBP respects your privacy and has
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  The official departmental privacy
policy can be viewed on the department's website at www.immi.gov.au.  See:
http://www.immi.gov.au/functional/privac...

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From: Alessandra Melville

Delivered

Dear FOI,

Thank you Shannon I am still seeking to obtain the information and I understand there needs to be an time extensions to get all the relevant documents.

Yours sincerely,

Alessandra Melville

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From: FOI

UNCLASSIFIED

Our references: FA 14/10/00419; ADF2014/36668

Dear Ms Melville,

Thank you for your email below.

I note that I sent you a request for an extension of time under s.15AA of the FOI Act on Wednesday, 5 November 2014. I did not receive a response from you regarding this extension of time request.

As the original due date of your request was 8 November 2014 and you did not respond to the extension of time request prior to this date, your request is now overdue. We are not able to retrospectively apply an extension of time after a request becomes overdue.

I can confirm that I have continued processing your request and my finalised decision is due to be sent to you by COB today, 19 November 2014.

Kind Regards

Shannon

Shannon Bevan
FOI Officer
FOI and Privacy Policy Section
Parliamentary and Executive Coordination Branch | Immigration and Border Protection Portfolio
T: 02 6264 4667
E: [DIBP request email]

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From: FOI


Attachment MELVILLE FA 14 10 00419 Decision Letter.pdf
604K Download View as HTML


UNCLASSIFIED

Our references: FA 14/10/00419; ADF2014/36668

 

Dear Ms Melville,

 

I refer to your FOI request received on 9 October 2014, seeking access to
the following:

 

I am wanting to obtain documents regarding the number of admissions to
health clinics due to mental health issues of asylum seekers residing on
Christmas Island from 2013-2014

 

I have made a decision on this request. Please see attached my signed
decision letter.

 

This request has now been closed.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

Shannon Bevan

FOI Officer

FOI and Privacy Policy Section

Parliamentary and Executive Coordination Branch | Immigration and Border
Protection Portfolio

T: 02 6264 4667

E: [DIBP request email]

 

UNCLASSIFIED

Important Notice: 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.  DIBP respects your privacy and has
obligations under the Privacy Act 1988.  The official departmental privacy
policy can be viewed on the department's website at www.immi.gov.au.  See:
http://www.immi.gov.au/functional/privac...

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Locutus Sum left an annotation ()

I have learnt to feel very hopeless with request to Department of Immigration and Border Protection but in this letter of refusal there is also a candle of hope.

The decision maker has gone an extra step to say exactly why the request was refused, making in bold letters the word that broke the request. It was not necessary. The decision maker could have restated the request from the applicant and then said, "We have looked for the documents. They do not exist. Your request is refused." That would have been enough.

So, I ask myself why the decision maker has gone this extra step. Maybe I am wrong with my hope but here is my belief. I think that maybe the policy of the Department is a "black letter" policy to say that if a request can be lawfully refused then the decision maker should refuse it. But maybe this decision maker can see the "black letter" policy and the hope and wants to indicate how a better request could be made.

If the idea is correct, then we must be careful. We must ask for documents, not only information. We must make the request not too big (or it will get a "practical refusal reason"). Also we should give a good idea of the time period. "I request documents for the time from 1 January, 2013 until today regarding attendances for mental health issues at a health service or health related service by asylum seekers on Christmas Island. This request is under the Freedom of Information Act 1982".

I hope it can succeed but maybe it is a wrong hope and Christmas has damaged my thought ability.

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