Restriction of Visits to One-on-One only at MITA detention centre

Karl Palmer made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Home Affairs

The request was partially successful.

From: Karl Palmer

Delivered

Dear Department of Immigration and Border Protection,

This is an application under the FOI Act.

I am seeking any documents (reports, minutes of meetings, emails, notes and the like) that include information on the new restriction limiting visits at the MITA detention centre in Broadmeadows, Victoria, to (in general) one detainee per visitor. (The new regulation is said to apply as of February 2018; the current limit is five.)

In particular, I am seeking documents that shed light on the rationale behind the change, and on the planning of its implementation.

Yours faithfully,

Karl Palmer

Link to this

From: 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
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Information Act 1982.

 

If your email is a valid FOI request, the Department will contact you
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For matters not relating to the Freedom of Information Act 1982, please
refer to the information below to assist in the resolution of your
enquiry.

 

General information regarding travelling to Australia

Information for visitors to Australia can be found [1]here.

Information regarding potential visa options can be found [2]here.

 

Request for a copy of your Visa Refusal or Visa Grant letter

If you have lost or misplaced correspondence regarding your Visa Refusal
or Visa Grant, or you wish to confirm the authenticity of your Visa
Refusal or Visa Grant, you should contact the office where you lodged your
visa application. 

Details of our offices located around the world can be found [3]here.

 

Queries regarding your current Visa status

You can check your visa details and conditions on the Department’s Visa
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necessary reference numbers to access the VEVO portal, you should contact
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If you are seeking a refund of fees associated with your Visa, you should
contact the office where you lodged your visa application.  Details of our
offices located around the world can be found [4]here.

 

Making a Visa application

Registered migration agents are authorised to provide immigration advice
or assistance, including advice regarding the lodgement of visa
applications. Further information on migration agents may be found
[5]here.  Please note that the Department is unable to assist you in this
regard.

 

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

 

Australian Citizenship

If you are seeking evidence of your Australian Citizenship, you should
complete Form 119, which can be found [7]here.  Details on where to send
your completed form may be found on page 8 of the Form.  This form will
not be actioned by the FOI Section.

 

Information on how to apply for Australian citizenship, information for
Australian citizens and Australian Citizenship Day can be found [8]here.

 

Movement Records/Travel History

If you are seeking evidence of your own travel movements/history you
should complete Form 1359, which can be found [9]here. Details on where to
send your request may be found on page 1 and 2 of the Form. This request
will not be actioned by the FOI Section.

 

Superannuation – Evidence of Immigration Status

If you are seeking evidence of your own immigration status for
superannuation purposes, you should complete Form 1194, which can be found
[10]here. Details on where to send your completed form may be found on
page 1 of the Form. This request will not be actioned by the FOI Section.

 

Update Passport Details

Information on how to update your address or passport details can be found
[11]here.

 

Notification of Change in Circumstances

If you have lodged a visa application and your circumstances have changed,
you should submit [12]Form 1022 to the office where you lodged your visa
application. Details of our offices located around the world can be found
[13]here. The FOI Section does not process these forms. 

 

Notification of incorrect answers

If you wish to correct answers that you have provided to the Department
either:

·         in a visa application

·         on a passenger card or

·         in response to a notice given to you by the Department inviting
you to comment on possible non-compliance with an obligation to correct
incorrect information

You should submit [14]Form 1023 to the Department. Details of our offices
located around the world can be found [15]here. The FOI Section does not
process these forms. 

 

Duty Free concessions

Information relating to duty free concessions can be found [16]here.

 

General Enquiries

If you have a question, which has not been answered above, and which is
about visa, citizenship, travel or trade, including bringing goods in and
out of Australia, please refer to our general enquiries web form [17]here.

 

 

Thank you

 

Information updated 8 January 2018

 

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References

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1. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Visi
2. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Visa-1
3. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/o...
4. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/o...
5. https://www.mara.gov.au/
6. https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Visa/Immi...
7. http://www.border.gov.au/Forms/Documents...
8. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Citi
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11. http://www.border.gov.au/Lega/Lega/Form/...
12. http://www.border.gov.au/Forms/Documents...
13. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/o...
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16. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Ente/Duty-...
17. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/m...

Link to this

From: FOI
Department of Home Affairs

UNCLASSIFIED

In reply please quote:

FOI Request:       FA 18/01/00495 

File Number:       ADF2018/7189 

Dear Mr Palmer

Acknowledgement of Freedom of Information Access request

I refer to your correspondence received on 13 January 2018 seeking access
to documents held by the Department of Home Affairs (the Department) under
the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (the FOI Act).

Please note that on 20 December 2017 the Home Affairs Portfolio, including
the Department of Home Affairs, was formally established.  For the
purposes of the FOI Act, the Department of Home Affairs includes the
entirety of the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, the
Australian Border Force and the Office of Transport Security from within
the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development.  It also
includes specific functions from the Attorney-General’s Department, the
Department of Social Services and the Department of the Prime Minister and
Cabinet.

A request for access to documents held by the Department of Home Affairs
will be limited to documents held by the Department, and will not include
documents held by other agencies within the wider Home Affairs portfolio,
which remain separate agencies for the purposes of the FOI Act.

You have requested access to the following:

any documents (reports, minutes of meetings, emails, notes and the like)
that include information on the new restriction limiting visits at the
MITA detention centre in Broadmeadows, Victoria, to (in general) one
detainee per visitor. (The new regulation is said to apply as of February
2018; the current limit is five.)

In particular, I am seeking documents that shed light on the rationale
behind the change, and on the planning of its implementation.

Your request was received by the Department on 13 January 2018 and has
been allocated FOI request number FA 18/01/00495.  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.

Exclusion of non-SES staff personal details and SES telephone contact
details

The Department’s policy is to exclude the personal details of officers not
in the Senior Executive Service (SES), as well as the mobile and work
telephone numbers of SES staff, contained in documents that fall within
scope of an FOI request. If you require names and contact details of
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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.

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
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Contacting the FOI Section

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

 

 

FOI Officer | Freedom of Information Section

FOI, Privacy and Records Management Branch

Corporate Services Division

Department of Home Affairs

 

 

UNCLASSIFIED

 

Important Notice: The content of this email is intended only for use by
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The Department of Home Affairs and ABF respect your privacy and have
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Unsolicited commercial emails MUST NOT be sent to the originator of this
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References

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Link to this

From: Karl Palmer

Delivered

Dear FOI,

It appears you have not managed to comply with my FOI request (re the change in policy regarding group visits to immigration detention centres) within the period specified by the law.

Is there a particular problem holding up this inquiry?

Yours sincerely,

Karl Palmer

Link to this

From: FOI
Department of Home Affairs

UNCLASSIFIED
Good afternoon

Thank you for your email enquiring about the progress of your FOI request. 

Please be advised that the Department is currently processing a large number of FOI requests.  Our staff are working hard and the Department is committed to processing your request as quickly as possible. A decision on access will be made on your request and you will be notified of this as soon as possible.

With kind regards
Freedom of Information Section
FOI, Privacy and Records Management Branch
Corporate Division
Department of Home Affairs
E: [email address]

UNCLASSIFIED

show quoted sections

Link to this

From: Karl Palmer

Delivered

Dear FOI,

Thank you for your prompt response to my query about the passing of the FOI due date. I can well understand that an agency like the ABF will be attracting many inquiries.

Can you clarify for me, is the cut-off date for such materials as you may decide to provide me with the day I lodged the FOI, or some later point? I am assuming the former, but I'm not sure.

I am asking because the ABF's move to limit group visits with people it detains is not a historical matter but is still underway and evolving.

If in fact it is the case that an FOI can only cover materials prior to the date of its submission, can you advise what is the best course of action for seeking access to more recent documents on the policy? Do I need to submit another FOI on the topic—all but identical but with a new date range? Or is there some other mechanism for seeking a supplemental time range that might simplify the task for you and avoid unnecessary duplication?

I will be grateful for any guidance you can provide.

Yours sincerely,

Karl Palmer

Link to this

From: Karl Palmer

Delivered

Dear FOI,

It is now over six weeks since the lodging of my FOI request.

You were kind enough to inform me earlier that you were hard at work and would be providing me with a response "as soon as possible."

Can you give me a sense of what sort of time frame is likely in this case? Is it a matter of days, weeks or months?

Yours sincerely,

Karl Palmer

Link to this

From: Karl Palmer

Delivered

Dear Department of Immigration and Border Protection,

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

I am writing to request an internal review of Department of Immigration and Border Protection's handling of my FOI request 'Restriction of Visits to One-on-One only at MITA detention centre'.

This FOI is now three weeks overdue. As it concerns an active and evolving matter, getting a prompt response within the timeframe set by the law is of some importance.

My last two queries on how long the FOI was likely to take have not received a reply.

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

Yours faithfully,

Karl Palmer

Link to this

From: 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. Please note that we will only action and
respond to FOI requests and other matters relating to the Freedom of
Information Act 1982.

 

If your email is a valid FOI request, the Department will contact you
shortly to acknowledge your request. Please do not send duplicate emails
as this may cause delays in processing times.

 

For matters not relating to the Freedom of Information Act 1982, please
refer to the information below to assist in the resolution of your
enquiry.

 

General information regarding travelling to Australia

Information for visitors to Australia can be found [1]here.

Information regarding potential visa options can be found [2]here.

 

Request for a copy of your Visa Refusal or Visa Grant letter

If you have lost or misplaced correspondence regarding your Visa Refusal
or Visa Grant, or you wish to confirm the authenticity of your Visa
Refusal or Visa Grant, you should contact the office where you lodged your
visa application. 

Details of our offices located around the world can be found [3]here.

 

Queries regarding your current Visa status

You can check your visa details and conditions on the Department’s Visa
Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) portal.  If you do not have the
necessary reference numbers to access the VEVO portal, you should contact
the office where you lodged your visa application for further information.

 

Refund of Visa fees

If you are seeking a refund of fees associated with your Visa, you should
contact the office where you lodged your visa application.  Details of our
offices located around the world can be found [4]here.

 

Making a Visa application

Registered migration agents are authorised to provide immigration advice
or assistance, including advice regarding the lodgement of visa
applications. Further information on migration agents may be found
[5]here.  Please note that the Department is unable to assist you in this
regard.

 

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

 

Australian Citizenship

If you are seeking evidence of your Australian Citizenship, you should
complete Form 119, which can be found [7]here.  Details on where to send
your completed form may be found on page 8 of the Form.  This form will
not be actioned by the FOI Section.

 

Information on how to apply for Australian citizenship, information for
Australian citizens and Australian Citizenship Day can be found [8]here.

 

Movement Records/Travel History

If you are seeking evidence of your own travel movements/history you
should complete Form 1359, which can be found [9]here. Details on where to
send your request may be found on page 1 and 2 of the Form. This request
will not be actioned by the FOI Section.

 

Superannuation – Evidence of Immigration Status

If you are seeking evidence of your own immigration status for
superannuation purposes, you should complete Form 1194, which can be found
[10]here. Details on where to send your completed form may be found on
page 1 of the Form. This request will not be actioned by the FOI Section.

 

Update Passport Details

Information on how to update your address or passport details can be found
[11]here.

 

Notification of Change in Circumstances

If you have lodged a visa application and your circumstances have changed,
you should submit [12]Form 1022 to the office where you lodged your visa
application. Details of our offices located around the world can be found
[13]here. The FOI Section does not process these forms. 

 

Notification of incorrect answers

If you wish to correct answers that you have provided to the Department
either:

·         in a visa application

·         on a passenger card or

·         in response to a notice given to you by the Department inviting
you to comment on possible non-compliance with an obligation to correct
incorrect information

You should submit [14]Form 1023 to the Department. Details of our offices
located around the world can be found [15]here. The FOI Section does not
process these forms. 

 

Duty Free concessions

Information relating to duty free concessions can be found [16]here.

 

General Enquiries

If you have a question, which has not been answered above, and which is
about visa, citizenship, travel or trade, including bringing goods in and
out of Australia, please refer to our general enquiries web form [17]here.

 

 

Thank you

 

Information updated 8 January 2018

 

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. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Visi
2. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Visa-1
3. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/o...
4. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/o...
5. https://www.mara.gov.au/
6. https://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Visa/Immi...
7. http://www.border.gov.au/Forms/Documents...
8. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Citi
9. http://www.border.gov.au/FormsAndDocumen...
10. http://www.border.gov.au/Forms/Documents...
11. http://www.border.gov.au/Lega/Lega/Form/...
12. http://www.border.gov.au/Forms/Documents...
13. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/o...
14. http://www.border.gov.au/Forms/Documents...
15. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/o...
16. http://www.border.gov.au/Trav/Ente/Duty-...
17. http://www.border.gov.au/about/contact/m...

Link to this

From: FOI
Department of Home Affairs


Attachment FA180100495 decision record.pdf
142K Download View as HTML

Attachment FA180100495 documents released.pdf
87K Download View as HTML


UNCLASSIFIED

Our references: FA 18/01/00495; ADF2018/7189

Dear Mr Palmer

I refer to your FOI request received on 13 January 2018 seeking access to the following:

Any documents (reports, minutes of meetings, emails, notes and the like) that include information on the new restriction limiting visits at the MITA detention centre in Broadmeadows, Victoria, to (in general) one detainee per visitor. (The new regulation is said to apply as of February 2018; the current limit is five.) In particular, I am seeking documents that shed light on the rationale behind the change, and on the planning of its implementation.

The Department has made a decision on this request. Please see attached the decision record and document released under the FOI Act.

This request has now been closed.

Yours sincerely

FOI Officer
Freedom of Information Section
FOI, Privacy and Records Management Branch
Corporate Services Division
Department of Home Affairs
E: [email address]

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