Dear Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council,
This article from the Guardian (https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020...) states that Wigan uses an algorithm to allocate social housing.
I request the following information about the algorithm:
(1) What specific inputs does the algorithm use?
(2) How are those inputs weighted or processed? What logic is applied to them to generate an output? How was that logic developed?
(3) What kind of output does the algorithm produce? Does the algorithm assign people a particular score or a particular category? What are the consequences of a particular output? How is it used by a human decision-maker?
(4) Please provide any documents summarising or evaluating the algorithm's operation.
(5) Does Wigan have any staff manuals, policies or educational materials about how the algorithm works? If so, please provide them.
(6) Has Wigan conducted any data protection impact assessments or equality impact assessments for the algorithm? If so, please provide them.
(7) Please provide any contracts by which Wigan procured the algorithm.
If you determine some of the information I have requested to be exempt from disclosure, please redact exempt information with black boxes, instead of snipping or excerpting, and please state which category of exemption you believe applies to the information.
If it is not possible to provide the information requested due to the information exceeding the cost of compliance limits identified in s.12 FOIA, please provide advice and assistance as to how I can refine my request, as required under s.16 FOIA.
Dear Mr Maxwell
I am emailing to confirm the receipt of your recent request for
information to Wigan Council. This has been logged with reference
indicated above and will be forwarded to the relevant department for
We will respond as soon as possible and in most cases no later than 20
working days after the receipt of your request i.e. by 26 November 2020.
The Information Commissioner’s Office has recognised the unprecedented
challenges all are facing during the pandemic and that people may
experience delays when making information rights requests during the
current situation. This is because the Council’s resources are focused on
ensuring that at risk and vulnerable residents are supported at this time.
If you have any comments or questions in the meantime, please direct them
to [Wigan Council request email], or in writing to the address below.
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the information is provided and payment may be requested prior to the
provision of the information.
Information Governance Assistant
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Legal Services - Resources Directorate
Town Hall, Library Street
Wigan WN1 1YN
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1. mailto:[Wigan Council request email]
Dear Mr Maxwell,
I am writing to respond to your recent request for information. This request has been handled under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
The response to your request is attached.
If you are unhappy with any aspect of this response, an independent senior officer will review this decision. If you are not satisfied with our response you must put your complaint in writing within 40 working days of receipt of this response giving the reasons for your complaint. You can either email [Wigan Council request email] or write to the address below.
You can also complain to the Information Commissioner, who is the regulator for Freedom of Information. Her website is https://ico.org.uk/ and her helpline number is 0303 1231113.
Her staff may ask you to exhaust our internal complaints procedure if you choose to complain to her office now.
Information Governance Officer
Please note that in light of Government guidance all Legal Services staff are currently working from home. We have a skeleton staff attending the office, by exception and only where absolutely necessary. Wherever possible, please avoid posting documents to us and use electronic communication instead. If you must post a hard copy document, please email the recipient, so we can arrange for post to be collected. We do not currently accept service of any documents by DX.
In these exceptional times please note our response times to correspondences may increase as we continue to support the most vulnerable in society and our frontline services.
Legal Services – Resources Directorate
01942 827639 (internal ext 2639)
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