Complaints procedure for challenging unfair decisions by the Petitions Committee

The request was successful.

Rodney N Edmondson

Dear House of Commons,

I want to make a complaint about a decision of the Petitions Committee to disallow a debate on petition https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions.... This petition currently has 154,210 signatures and is open for signatures until 10 April 2017 but has already been disallowed for debate.

I have written to the Chair of the Petitions Committee and to my MP but have not received any satisfactory answer to my complaint.

Could you please supply me with the following information or direct me to a suitable source for this information:

1) Is there any procedure that I can use to make a formal complaint about the decisions of the Petitions Committee?

2) Is there any Government or Parliamentary body that oversees the decisions of the Petitions Committee?

3) Has any person ever made a legal challenge against any decision of the Petitions Committee? If so, please could you direct me to a source of information about any such challenge.

Yours faithfully,

Rodney N Edmondson

FOI Commons, House of Commons

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Edmondson,

 

Freedom of Information request F17-113

 

Thank you for your request for information dated 22 February 2017,
received by us on the same date, which is copied below.

 

We will endeavour to respond to your request promptly but in any case
within 20 working days i.e. on or before 23 March 2017.

 

If you have any queries about your request, please use the request number
quoted above and in the subject line of this email.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Sarah Price

IRIS Support Officer
Information Rights and Information Security (IRIS) Service | House of
Commons

 

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FOI Commons, House of Commons

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Edmondson,

 

 

Freedom of Information request F17-113

 

Thank you for your request for information, as copied below. You asked
three questions about the decisions made by the Petitions Committee, which
we have sought to answer below.

 

1)  Is there any procedure that I can use to make a formal complaint about
the decisions of the Petitions Committee?

 

This information is held by the House of Commons. If someone wants to
raise concerns about the decisions the Petitions Committee has made, they
can write to the Chair of the Committee to express their views.

 

 

2)  Is there any Government or Parliamentary body that oversees the
decisions of the Petitions Committee?

 

There is no government or Parliamentary body that oversees the decisions
of the Petitions Committee and therefore this information is not held by
the House of Commons.

 

It may be helpful to know that you can find out more about the Committee
and its role in the following report, available here:

E–petitions: a collaborative system (Third Report of Session 2014–15):
[1]https://www.publications.parliament.uk/p...

This report recommended the establishment of the new petitions system and
the Committee.

 

3)  Has any person ever made a legal challenge against any decision of the
Petitions Committee? If so, please could you direct me to a source of
information about any such challenge.

 

This information is not held by the House of Commons. We are not aware of
any attempt to make a legal challenge against a decision of the Petitions
Committee. Parliament’s decisions about its own proceedings cannot
ordinarily be challenged in a court. Please note that the powers of the
Petitions Committee are set out in House of Commons Standing Orders,
principally in SO No. 145A, and not in law. You can read the Standing
Orders on the parliament website here:
[2]https://www.parliament.uk/business/publi...

 

 

We do try to assist our requesters wherever possible, and we understand
that you are unhappy with the Committee's decision not to schedule a
debate on this petition. The Committee, as you know, has explained that it
decided not to debate the petition because the issue was debated in
Parliament on 6 June 2016. That debate was organised by the Petitions
Committee after the e-petition "Restrict the use of fireworks to reduce
stress and fear in animals and pets" gathered over 100,000 signatures on
petition.parliament.uk. You can see the explanation here:
[3]https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions...

 

It may be also be helpful to know that the Petitions Committee is not the
only way of getting a House of Commons debate on the subject of a
petition. MPs could still try to get time for a further debate on this
subject, if they wish to do so. There are many ways in which MPs can seek
time for debates: individual MPs can apply for debates at the end of the
day in the main Chamber, or for debates in Westminster Hall (the second
debating Chamber of the House of Commons). Groups of backbenchers can ask
the Backbench Business Committee for time for debate, either in the main
Chamber of the House of Commons or in Westminster Hall. The Government and
the Opposition parties also have the power to schedule debates.

 

 

You may, if dissatisfied with the handling of your request, complain to
the House of Commons. Alternatively, if you are dissatisfied with the
outcome of your request you may ask the House of Commons to conduct an
internal review of any decision regarding your request. Complaints or
requests for internal review should be addressed to: Information Rights
and Information Security Service, Research and Information Team, House of
Commons, London SW1A 0AA or [4][House of Commons request email]. Please ensure
that you specify the full reasons for your complaint or internal review
along with any arguments or points that you wish to make.

 

If you remain dissatisfied, you may appeal to the Information Commissioner
at Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF,
[5]www.ico.gov.uk.

 

Kindest regards,

 

Lauren

 

 

Lauren Puckey | IRIS Officer
Information Rights and Information Security (IRIS) Service | House of
Commons

Tel: 0207 219 4025 | Text Relay: 18001 219 4025 | Fifth Floor, 14 Tothill
St, London SW1H 9NB

 

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Click [7]here for information about FOI in the House of Commons,

or to see what we publish.

 

 

 

 

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