Dear House of Lords,
Can you please let me have a copy of any log/comments book or
similar which allows customers and or staff/visitors to register
comments about food and drink they receive at any outlet (bars,
restaurants, shops catering services) in the House of Lords for
the most recent 12-month period.
Also, can you send me copies of any written complaints from
staff/customers about any aspect of the catering service or
hospitality on offer with any replies to these complaints
How many complaints did you receive in the most recent 12-month
period in relation to food and drink served in the House of Lords
dining facilities? Please provide copies of the letters of
Additionally can you provide me with all details of complaints
about the food/restaurants/bars/catering services in the House of
If the 12-month timescale would cost too much, can you please restrict search to last six months.
Thank you for your email.
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5. mailto:[email address]
I am writing in response to your request (copied below) to the House of
Please find attached a copy of the comments and complaints received during
the relevant 12 - month period. Suggestions/comments are retained in the
form of a log (first attachment).
As you will see, the names of customers and junior catering staff, and any
other identifying data, have been withheld. Such information constitutes
personal data within the meaning of section 1 of the Data Protection Act
1998 (“the 1998 Act”). After careful consideration, we have concluded
that disclosure of this information would breach the first data protection
principle (i.e. that data should be processed fairly and lawfully). In
ensuring that any disclosure of personal data is fair and lawful, the
first principle also requires that a condition in Schedule 2 to the 1998
Act is also met. The only condition which might apply to this disclosure
would be condition 6(1) which states that:
"The processing is necessary for the purposes of legitimate interests
pursued by the data controller... except where the processing is
unwarranted in any particular case by reason of prejudice to the rights
and freedoms or legitimate interests of the data subject."
We have followed the recommendation of the Information Commissioner’s
Office and have approached this condition as a three-part test:
(i) there must be a legitimate public interest in disclosure;
(ii) the disclosure must be necessary to meet that public interest;
(iii) the disclosure must not cause unwarranted harm to the
interests of the individual.
We have concluded that the disclosure of the identities of individuals
making a complaint is not necessary to meet any public interest that there
may be in the operation of catering services funded from public money. We
are able to meet the point by releasing the details of the complaint
together with, where available, the response. As a result of the second
aspect of the above test not being met we consider that the identity of
the customer, together with other information that might identify an
individual, is exempt information under section 40(2) of the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 Act.
The second attachment contains an e-mail dated 13 February 2015 17.15.
It may be helpful if we explain that there was no further correspondence.
A meeting was held to resolve the matter.
I hope this is helpful.
You may, if dissatisfied with the treatment of your request for
information, ask the House of Lords to conduct an internal review.
Requests for an internal review should be addressed to
[email address] or to the Freedom of Information Officer, House
of Lords, London, SW1A 0PW and explain clearly the nature of your
complaint. Arrangements will be made for someone who has not been
involved in dealing with your request to conduct an internal review. Our
aim is to complete internal reviews within 20 working days.
If, following this review, you remain dissatisfied with the House’s
treatment of your request for information then you may take your complaint
to the Information Commissioner at Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow,
Cheshire. SK9 5AF.
Freedom of Information Officer
House of Lords
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