Freedom of information policy

1. The Freedom of Information Act 2000 is intended to promote a culture of openness among public authorities and to give people the right to access much of the information they hold.

2. Although the Daniel Morgan Independent Panel is not, itself, a public authority under the Act, it is an organisational unit within the Home Office, which is covered by the Act and therefore the Act’s provisions apply to the Panel and its work.

3. The Panel will, proactively, make information available regarding its policies and procedures, via its website, to enable the public to understand its work and how it operates. The Home Secretary will publish its report, and supporting papers, when the Panel’s work is complete.

4. Because of the nature of the Panel’s work, as set out in its terms of reference, much of the information supplied to it as evidence, by other organisations, will be supplied in confidence and the Panel will have no discretion to overturn such duties of confidence. However, to the extent that such evidence is relevant to the Panel’s findings, that evidence will be published alongside the Panel’s report. If redactions to documents have to be made for publication, those redactions will be justified by reference to the appropriate section of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

5. The Panel has determined that some internal papers, such as minutes of Panel meetings, or discussions regarding evidence, should not be published prior to the completion of the Panel’s report. It is the Panel’s intention, however, to publish such papers alongside the report, or very shortly afterwards.

6. If you wish to make a request for access to information about the Panel, or its work, under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, please contact them by email. [There was an email address that is no longer live]

7. The Panel will forward any request it receives to the Home Office which will be responsible for its processing.

A Management Statement agreed between the Panel and the Home Office requires the Home Secretary to process FOI requests in accordance with the FOI Act 2000. Where the request relates to the Panel’s processes and procedures, the Home Office is likely to need to consult the Panel before responding to the request. Where the request relates to the subject matter of the Panel’s work, the Home Office is likely to need to consult both the Panel and the organisation which provided the information in question to it before it responds to the request.

The Panel will monitor the progress of any requests made under the Act to ensure that the Home Office is meeting its responsibilities to the Panel in this regard.

November 2014

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