Mr F and Western Care Association

CourtInformation Commission
JudgeSenior Investigator
Judgment Date19 October 2021
Case OutcomeThe Senior Investigator affirmed the decision of WCA.
RespondentWestern Care Association
Record NumberOIC-109248-F3Q6Z0
Whether WCA was justified, under section 37(1) of the Act, in redacting certain information from a number of records relating to the applicant and whether it was justified, under section 15(1)(a) of the Act, in refusing access to any further records on the ground that no further relevant records exist or can be found

OIC-109248-F3Q6Z0

Background

The applicant, a service user of WCA, acted through his father in this FOI process and references to the applicant may be taken as references to his father, as appropriate. In a request WCA received on 9 December 2020, the applicant sought access to all records/files concerning him, including his care plan, from when he first started receiving services with WCA to date. In a decision dated 7 January 2021, WCA identified a large number of records (pages numbered 1 to 1051 in the Schedule of records provided by WCA), to which it granted access, with redactions made throughout the records under section 37(1) of the FOI Act. The applicant sought an internal review of that decision by letter dated 23 January 2021, wherein he argued that a range of additional records should have been released, including records relating to the budget since he began attending services.

In its internal review decision of 11 February 2021, WCA advised the applicant that he should make a fresh request for records relating to the budget. It affirmed the original decision on the request. On 22 June 2021, the applicant sought a review by this Office of WCA’s decision, wherein he stated that he was not satisfied that all records had been released and was seeking unredacted copies of the records that were released.

During the course of the review, WCA re-examined the records that had been redacted under section 37(1) and re-released approximately 330 of them to the applicant either in full, or with most of the original redactions removed. In its submissions to this Office, WCA stated that the following records remain part-granted with redactions made of certain information: 185, 212, 309, 370, 428, 477, 598, 599, 658, 959, 963, 972 & 973.

I have now completed my review in accordance with section 22(2) of the FOI Act. In carrying out my review, I have had regard to the submissions made by the WCA and the applicant’s comments in his application for review and in further communications with this Office. I have also examined the records at issue. I have decided to conclude this review by way of a formal, binding decision.

Scope of Review

Following the advice received by WCA, the applicant made a separate request for budgetary information. WCA’s decision on that request is the subject of a separate review by this Office in case no. OIC-109256. As such, this review will not consider any such records.


Accordingly, this review is concerned with whether WCA was justified, under section 37(1) of the Act, in redacting certain information from records 185, 212, 309, 370, 428, 477, 598, 599, 658, 959, 963, 972 & 973, and whether it was justified, under section 15(1)(a) of the Act, in refusing access to any further records on the grounds that no further relevant...

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