Category Archives: Freedom of Information

ICO to monitor The Home Office due to delays in Freedom of Information responses

The Information Commissioner has announced that The Home Office is to be monitored for three months over concerns that it takes too long to respond to Freedom of Information requests from the public.

The information commissioner said that he would be looking at responses to FOI requests received between 1 July and 30 September 2013.  From my own experiences with The Home Office on What Do They Know, I am well aware of the problem, and have infact raised about 30 complaints to the ICO in relation to various Freedom of Information requests that I myself have filed to The Home Office.

It is, however, NOT just The Home Office that is to be monitored.  The ICO’s announcement also states that the period will also monitor South Tyneside Council and Sussex Police.

You can monitor who is due to be / being monitored on the ICO website: Monitoring Compliance

You can also read more on this subject on the BBC News article:  Home Office monitored over Freedom Of Information delays

The Guardian's Take on the Go Home Vans

So, The Guardian has a take on the reason behind the Go Home Vans.  Read their post here: Our hysterical media helped create the immigrant ‘go home’ van.

The article also raises the fact that the Home Office had paid £400,000 to fund the series UK Border Force for Sky television.  Obviously, this was what sparked me to once again head on over to What Do They Know, and submit Television Programs Funded by The Home Office:

Breast is Best

So, after the refusal notice from The Home Office, it came to light that The Home Office don’t care much about the best interests of a child – despite being bound to it by their Section 55 responsibilities.

However the fact that you are breastfeeding, in itself, does not confer a derivative right.  Depriving the child of the ability to be breastfed by you if you are required to leave the UK is not regarded  as depriving the child of the benefit of its rights as a union citizen.  should this particular aspect of the case wish to be pursued then you may wish to make an Art 8 application as detailed later in this letter.

So, lets get a bit of insight into the whole situation.

  1. The Home Office don’t care about the fact that the baby is Breast Fed.  Basically saying “Touch S**t”.
  2. It is a *fact* that it is in a babies best interests to be breast fed.
  3. They do not actually assess the best Interests of a child.
  4. This fact will only go to help our case – as outlined in the recent MA and SA ruling.

It appears that the Home Office clearly do not take the Best Interests of a Child into the matter at hand – they even state such in the refusal notices by stating “must make an Art 8 application“.

Since 1999, there have been numerous reports by the Gov that outlines the fact that “Breast is Best”.

(Search YouTube: Breast is Best)

It is for this reason the following What Do They Know freedom of information requests were filed:

Home Office "Go Home" Van Pilot…

Photograph of the Home Office Go Home Van
Photograph: Home Office/PA

So, it was publicly advertised on television and billboards.  A small fleet of advertisement vans were driving around London with a massive billboard of “Go Home or Face Arrest”The public announcement by The Home Office was posted on the 25th July 2013 on the Home Office News Pages.  This scheme / pilot is clearly discriminative.  As I outlined in response to a previous FOI request I made on What Do They Know.

I therefore posted my own FOI Request Cost of the Returns Pilot.  It appears that I am not the only person interested in this subject.  Take a look at the following FOI requests also…

 

Yet more hope for seperated parents of British Children.

I am writing today in relation to the case of MA and SM (Zambrano:
EU children outside EU) Iran [2013] UKUT 00380 (IAC) which is available  here: http://www.bailii.org/uk/cases/UKUT/IAC/2013/00380_ukut_iac_2013_ma_sm_iran.html

It appears that good Judge O’Connor has found in favour of the people who the Home Office have refused a right of residence to.  It is well worth a read to anybody.  As is the associated FreeMovement Blog Article.

Also, Whilst I am well aware this will fail horribly (as the Home Office dislike answering my (What Do They Know) Freedom of Information Requests) I have submitted the following: Freedom of Information Request

The Cost of Supplying Armed UK Police at the American Embassy

So, it turns out that my What Do They Know Freedom of Information Request asking The Cost of Supplying Armed UK Police at the American Embassy to the Home Office has been refused.

As you will see from the response today, The Home Office have stated that to tell us (The Public) how much of our money it spends protecting the American Embassy (who I might add have their own Armed Contractors / Security / Police onsite also) would serve to reveal how much protection is in place.

With regards to your questions, we confirm we hold the information requested. However, after careful consideration we have decided that the information is exempt from disclosure by virtue of section 24(2) of the Freedom of Information Act. This exempts us from our duty to release the information where to do so could prejudice national security, and the public interest falls in favour of applying the exemptions. This test is explained fully in the annex of this letter.

Furthermore, we neither confirm nor deny we hold any further information under section 23(5) (information supplied by or relating to the security services). Section 23 is an absolute exemption and does not require the consideration of the public interest.

The response goes onto state:

However, the Home Office believes these arguments are outweighed by the general arguments for applying the Section 24 (2) in response to any questions about the protection of individuals and institutions. The justification is that the purpose of providing police protection is to protect life. Releasing the cost of supplying armed (UK) police services at the American Embassy could allow individuals to deduce the type of protection in place. It is long established policy not to comment upon any matters of personal protective security. Disclosure of such information could compromise the integrity of those arrangements and affect the security of a wide range of persons.

However, this is rediculous, which has ended up in an expansion of my original request, which I am sure will not fall foul of Section 24 or 23. – How much of the bill do the Americans foot.  However, I am sure they foot a grand total of £0. – We’ll wait and see.

"Those who have been granted Temporary Admission have no immigration status"

I got a response to my FOI request, so I decided to Fire off an email in reply to it.  The main problem being: The response was clearly a little discriminating.
Subject: Complaint as to IS96 reporting conditions
From: My @ Email
To: [email protected]; [email protected];
Cc: [email protected];
Bcc:
Date: Thursday, 28 February 2013, 2:56
Name Address
Dear Sirs,
FAO: Paula Scott, Senior Caseworker.
I am writing to you in regards to the application of my wife: Mrs x
Royal Mail Package: x (Delivered on 15th Jan 2013) HO Ref: x and Case ID: x
(This is further to all of my previous emails / letters ETC to which I have failed to receive a reply)

 

So, after receiving a response for my FOI in regards to an IS96 document ETC, it seems apparent that my wife should not legally be required to report to UKBA ETC.
My FOI request can be seen here:
The specific section of the request which I refer to is the following:
—-begin quote—-
Some people given Temporary Admission will be neither an asylum seeker or failed asylum seeker. Those who have been granted Temporary Admission have no immigration status, are liable to removal and can generally avoid a breach of their rights by returning home. It is the claimants’ responsibility to return home and not the Secretary of State’s responsibility to support those who choose to remain in the UK illegally.
—-end quote—-
The problem being: my wife is not remaining in the UK illegally. She has a derivative right of residence – and therefore DOES have an immigration status!
She does not hold a UKBA issued Residence Card ETC, but your own document located here:
States
—-begin quote—-
Residence Documents issued under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations are not mandatory.
—-end quote—-
A derivative right of residence falls under the Immigration (EEA) Regulations.
Therefore, as previously requested, I would expect a written response to this email, along with all other messages, within the next seven days. I have not received a response in connection with the complaint raised yet even more members of staff at the UKBA seem to figure it is fine to suggest immigrants to the UK return “home”.
The definition of “home”:
How can it be considered OK to refer to somebody’s country of nationality as “home”, and to even suggest that an “applicant” return “home”. Surely this is a clear breach of discrimination laws!
Obviously, UKBA should be treating ALL people equally, regardless of race, nationality, religion ETC. The comments which have been made to my wife, and are even in writing on this document clearly do not demonstrate this!
I wrote to you on the 14th Feb, and received a response giving a five working day response timeline. No message has been received.
I raised a complaint on behalf of my wife, and nothing has been actioned with this complaint. I would therefore expect to know the next step on the complaints process… As you can see, these messages have already been sent onto my MP. This case has been ongoing for over three years.
On the judgement of Case C-34/09 which stated the parent of an EU citizen has the right to live and work in the member state my wifes reporting conditions should of been halted, as her “Temporary Admission” was a Derivative Right of Residence. – Regardless of whether she registered via the EEA2 / DRF1 forms – as your own documents state that an EEA application is NOT MANDATORY!
Yours,
Mr P