Members of the House of Commons Imminently Due a Coronavirus Vaccine

House of Commons did not have the information requested.

Dear House of Commons,

As we learn that the priority of the corona virus vaccine will be placed upon those over 65 and those working within the health industry, I would like to request what the total number of MPs is across the UK who are over 65, and further, a list of those names who will be prioritized to receive the vaccine before Christmas or otherwise, in tandem with the rest of the UK roll-out?

As information on the date-of-birth is already publicly available for every MP, I note that the latter question should not fall within GDPR. Notwithstanding that the response may correlate to all those who are over 65, I am still requesting specific names in the event this list may differ.

In the instance the list does differ from the total number, I am requesting what the policy is to determine and therefore justify this difference.

Yours faithfully,

Christine Gibson

FOI Commons, House of Commons

Dear Ms Gibson,

 

Freedom of Information request F20-597

 

Thank you for your request for information dated 11 November 2020,
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 10 December 2020.

 

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

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

We will work hard to answer your information rights requests during the
current COVID 19 situation in line with statutory requirements, however
some requests may be affected by access to collections and availability of
staff. We will keep you informed of any identified delays in answering
your request.

 

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Sarah Price

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

 

[1]www.parliament.uk | [2]@ukparliament | [3]@houseofcommons

[4]House of Commons Privacy Notice for the Public

[5]Supporting a thriving parliamentary democracy

 

 

 

From: Christine Gibson <[FOI #705049 email]>
Sent: 11 November 2020 02:57
To: FOI Commons <[email address]>
Subject: Freedom of Information request - Members of the House of Commons
Imminently Due a Coronavirus Vaccine

 

Dear House of Commons,

As we learn that the priority of the corona virus vaccine will be placed
upon those over 65 and those working within the health industry, I would
like to request what the total number of MPs is across the UK who are over
65, and further, a list of those names who will be prioritized to receive
the vaccine before Christmas or otherwise, in tandem with the rest of the
UK roll-out?

As information on the date-of-birth is already publicly available for
every MP, I note that the latter question should not fall within GDPR.
Notwithstanding that the response may correlate to all those who are over
65, I am still requesting specific names in the event this list may
differ.

In the instance the list does differ from the total number, I am
requesting what the policy is to determine and therefore justify this
difference.

Yours faithfully,

Christine Gibson

-------------------------------------------------------------------

Please use this email address for all replies to this request:
[6][FOI #705049 email]

Is [7][House of Commons request email] the wrong address for Freedom of
Information requests to House of Commons? If so, please contact us using
this form:
[8]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/change_re...

Disclaimer: This message and any reply that you make will be published on
the internet. Our privacy and copyright policies:
[9]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/offi...

For more detailed guidance on safely disclosing information, read the
latest advice from the ICO:
[10]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/ico-...

Please note that in some cases publication of requests and responses will
be delayed.

If you find this service useful as an FOI officer, please ask your web
manager to link to us from your organisation's FOI page.

show quoted sections

FOI Commons, House of Commons

1 Attachment

Dear Ms Gibson,

 

 

Freedom of Information request F20-597

 

Thank you for your request for information as copied below. You asked two
questions about Members of Parliament, which we have sought to answer
below.

 

 1. I would like to request what the total number of MPs is across the UK
who are over 65

 

Some information is held by the House of Commons in relation to your
request.

 

As of 8 December 2020, the House holds the dates of birth of 576 MPs. Of
these, 72 are aged 65 years old or older.

 

It may help you to know that MPs are not employed by the House of Commons.
However, they may voluntarily disclose personal information about
themselves, and the House of Commons Library may collect some information
from public sources for research purposes. While we endeavour to ensure
the information is correct, we cannot guarantee it is 100 per cent
accurate.

 

Alternatively, you may wish to consider contacting Members directly to ask
for the information you seek. Contact details are available at:
[1]http://www.parliament.uk/mps-lords-and-o..., Members
of Parliament are not public authorities for the purposes of the Freedom
of Information Act. This means that they are not obliged to respond to
requests made under the Act. Similarly, the Act does not apply to
political parties.

 

 2. A list of those name who will be prioritized to receive the vaccine
before Christmas or otherwise, in tandem with the rest of the UK
roll-out

 

This information is not held by the House of Commons. Again, MPs are not
employed by the House of Commons and furthermore the House has role in
monitoring or managing their healthcare arrangements.

 

In addition, it may help you to know that matters of government policy
will be held by the relevant Government Department. Therefore, for
information regarding the rollout of a Coronavirus vaccine, you may wish
to consider contacting the Department for Health and Social Care. Contact
details can be found at
[2]https://www.gov.uk/government/organisati....

 

 

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 & Information Team, House of
Commons, London SW1A 0AA or [3][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,
[4]www.ico.org.uk.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

IRIS Officer
Information Rights and Information Security

House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA
[5][IMG]

 

[6]House of Commons Privacy Notice for the public

 

The House of Commons welcomes feedback. If you have any compliments,
complaints or comments,
about the service that you have received please send an email
to [7][email address]

 

 

 

From: Christine Gibson <[FOI #705049 email]>
Sent: 11 November 2020 02:57
To: FOI Commons <[email address]>
Subject: Freedom of Information request - Members of the House of Commons
Imminently Due a Coronavirus Vaccine

 

Dear House of Commons,

As we learn that the priority of the corona virus vaccine will be placed
upon those over 65 and those working within the health industry, I would
like to request what the total number of MPs is across the UK who are over
65, and further, a list of those names who will be prioritized to receive
the vaccine before Christmas or otherwise, in tandem with the rest of the
UK roll-out?

As information on the date-of-birth is already publicly available for
every MP, I note that the latter question should not fall within GDPR.
Notwithstanding that the response may correlate to all those who are over
65, I am still requesting specific names in the event this list may
differ.

In the instance the list does differ from the total number, I am
requesting what the policy is to determine and therefore justify this
difference.

Yours faithfully,

Christine Gibson

-------------------------------------------------------------------

Please use this email address for all replies to this request:
[8][FOI #705049 email]

Is [9][House of Commons request email] the wrong address for Freedom of
Information requests to House of Commons? If so, please contact us using
this form:
[10]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/change_re...

Disclaimer: This message and any reply that you make will be published on
the internet. Our privacy and copyright policies:
[11]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/offi...

For more detailed guidance on safely disclosing information, read the
latest advice from the ICO:
[12]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/ico-...

Please note that in some cases publication of requests and responses will
be delayed.

If you find this service useful as an FOI officer, please ask your web
manager to link to us from your organisation's FOI page.

show quoted sections

Dear FOI Commons,

I have received your response one day before the obligated deadline to which you have indicated that you do not hold all the information and that you iterate that the MPs are not employed by the House of Commons on two ocassions within your response.

To enable me to progress this further, could you please clarity the following so that I have understood and will understand your response better:

1) That there are 72 MPs in the House of Commons and none are employed by the House
2) If this is the case, can you signpost me to whomever they are employed by?
3) Can you also explain the relevance of the points 1 and 2 to my request when my request was directed at you?
4) I am cognisant that you are not a health-related organisation and apologiges if this was inferred, however, it is the case that organisations and corporations are now stipulating that all who work for them are to be vaccinated and it is this policy that I seek to clarify with yourself as it would be reasonable to assume that you would hold or be privy to this information, if in fact, it exists.

I look forward to receiving clarification of your response in due course.

Yours faithfully
Christine Gibson

FOI Commons, House of Commons

Dear Ms Gibson,

 

Freedom of Information request F20-657

 

Thank you for your request for information dated 14 December 2020,
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 15 January 2021.

 

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

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

We will work hard to answer your information rights requests during the
current COVID 19 situation in line with statutory requirements, however
some requests may be affected by access to collections and availability of
staff. We will keep you informed of any identified delays in answering
your request.

 

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

Sarah Price

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

 

[1]www.parliament.uk | [2]@ukparliament | [3]@houseofcommons

[4]House of Commons Privacy Notice for the Public

[5]Supporting a thriving parliamentary democracy

 

 

 

From: Christine Gibson <[FOI #705049 email]>
Sent: 14 December 2020 01:49
To: FOI Commons <[email address]>
Subject: Re: F20-597 Response

 

Dear FOI Commons,

I have received your response one day before the obligated deadline to
which you have indicated that you do not hold all the information and that
you iterate that the MPs are not employed by the House of Commons on two
ocassions within your response.

To enable me to progress this further, could you please clarity the
following so that I have understood and will understand your response
better:

1) That there are 72 MPs in the House of Commons and none are employed by
the House

2) If this is the case, can you signpost me to whomever they are employed
by?

3) Can you also explain the relevance of the points 1 and 2 to my request
when my request was directed at you?

4) I am cognisant that you are not a health-related organisation and
apologiges if this was inferred, however, it is the case that
organisations and corporations are now stipulating that all who work for
them are to be vaccinated and it is this policy that I seek to clarify
with yourself as it would be reasonable to assume that you would hold or
be privy to this information, if in fact, it exists.

I look forward to receiving clarification of your response in due course.

Yours faithfully

Christine Gibson

show quoted sections

Dear House of Commons,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of House of Commons's handling of my FOI request 'Members of the House of Commons Imminently Due a Coronavirus Vaccine'.

I received your response one day before the obligated deadline to which you have indicated that you do not hold all the information and that you iterate that the MPs are not employed by the House of Commons on two occasions within your response.

in addition to the period of response being up to the penultimate date without any indication as to the justification for the long period of waiting for a reply to inform me that you do not hold the information I am also of the belief that your response is in breach of the Act as follows:
1) you did not clarify the meaning of your response
2) you did not signpost me to the appropriate body for a response where you do not hold the information

I look forward to receiving clarification of your response in due course.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/m...

Yours faithfully,

Christine Gibson

FOI Commons, House of Commons

1 Attachment

Dear Ms Gibson,

 

 

Freedom of Information Request F20-597 - clarification

 

Thank you for your further email, as copied below.  I am sorry that you
were not happy with our response to your questions.  You kindly detailed
the reasons for your dissatisfaction, for which I have provided the
requested clarifications below.  Please note that we have also received
related questions from you which we have logged as a new FOI request (our
reference F20-657).  For clarity, we still intend to answer that
separately, but some of the responses below may overlap or answer your
second request. 

 

Firstly, please allow me to clarify that there are currently 650 elected
Members of Parliament.  None of these Members are employed or paid by the
House of Commons.  They operate in a similar way to 650 separate
self-employed persons, and so the information the House holds about
Members is limited. 

Generally speaking, we hold Member information where it relates to our
role – making laws (e.g. we hold details of how each MP votes in the
Chamber) and scrutinising the work of the Government (e.g. we hold details
of which MPs are on Committees).  However we do not routinely hold much
personal information, or information about their day-to-day duties or
constituency/political/personal activities. A great deal of information
about the House of Commons is available on our website
([1]https://www.parliament.uk/about/), and this may also help you. 

 

1) You did not clarify the meaning of your response

For your first question (how many MPs are over 65 years old) we advised
you that we only held the dates of birth for 576 out of the current 650
MPs.  Out of the 576 MP for whom we hold data, we advised you that 72 MPs
are over 65 years old.  Because we only hold some of the data, we cannot
answer your question more fully.  We explained that this was because we do
not employ any MPs, and so they are not obliged to disclose this
information to us.

 

In your second question, you asked for a list of names of those who will
be prioritised to receive the vaccine before Christmas or otherwise, and
we told you that we didn’t hold that information.  We explained that we
were not responsible for which Members may or may not be prioritised
(because we don’t employ them), and that details of how prioritisation
policies will work is a matter for the Government to decide, not the House
of Commons.

2) You did not signpost me to the appropriate body for a response where
you do not hold the information

For your first question (how many MPs are over 65 years old) we advised
you that we didn’t hold the dates of birth for all Members.  We also
suggested that, because MPs had a similar status to self-employed persons,
the only likely way of sourcing the ‘missing’ information would be to
contact the Members directly.  We are not aware of any single, central
public authority which would hold this information.

 

We informed you that we didn’t hold any information to answer your second
question (a list of names of those who will be prioritised to receive the
vaccine before Christmas or otherwise), and not only suggested that it may
be the Government that holds the information, but also provided the likely
Government Department and contact details.

 

Lastly, you have expressed dissatisfaction with the length of time it took
to provide you with a response.  The Freedom of Information Act 2000
(section 10 (1)) stipulates that a public authority must comply “promptly
and in any event not later than the twentieth working day following the
date of receipt”.  We are not obliged to justify the time it takes to
answer a request, although if it ever goes beyond the statutory deadline
we always notify the requester and try to explain.  However, I can advise
you that in recent weeks the House of Commons has experienced a huge
upsurge of requests (up to 200% of normal levels) which have proved
challenging for the very small FOI team and resulted in some requests
taking a little longer to get to.  In spite of these difficulties, and
those related to the current Covid-19 pandemic, we are proud to have
answered over 98% of all requests in 2020 within the statutory deadline,
and continue to strive to supply timely, accurate and helpful responses to
all requesters.

 

I hope this further clarification is helpful and that it enables you to
better understand the House’s position on these matters.  I am not sure
what else we can add to address your expectations, but you still have the
right to request a full Internal Review if you wish.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Information Rights Manager 
Information Rights and Information Security (IRIS) 
House of Commons, Palace of Westminster, London SW1A 0AA 
[2]parliament.uk
[3][IMG]

[4]House of Commons Privacy Notice for the public

[5]Supporting a thriving parliamentary democracy

 

 

 

From: Christine Gibson <[FOI #705049 email]>
Sent: 16 December 2020 03:07
To: FOI Commons <[email address]>
Subject: Internal review of Freedom of Information request - Members of
the House of Commons Imminently Due a Coronavirus Vaccine

 

Dear House of Commons,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information
reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of House of Commons's handling
of my FOI request 'Members of the House of Commons Imminently Due a
Coronavirus Vaccine'.

I received your response one day before the obligated deadline to which
you have indicated that you do not hold all the information and that you
iterate that the MPs are not employed by the House of Commons on two
occasions within your response.

in addition to the period of response being up to the penultimate date
without any indication as to the justification for the long period of
waiting for a reply to inform me that you do not hold the information I am
also of the belief that your response is in breach of the Act as follows:
1) you did not clarify the meaning of your response
2) you did not signpost me to the appropriate body for a response where
you do not hold the information

I look forward to receiving clarification of your response in due course.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on
the Internet at this address:
[6]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/m...

Yours faithfully,

Christine Gibson

-------------------------------------------------------------------
Please use this email address for all replies to this request:
[7][FOI #705049 email]

Disclaimer: This message and any reply that you make will be published on
the internet. Our privacy and copyright policies:
[8]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/offi...

For more detailed guidance on safely disclosing information, read the
latest advice from the ICO:
[9]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/help/ico-...

Please note that in some cases publication of requests and responses will
be delayed.

If you find this service useful as an FOI officer, please ask your web
manager to link to us from your organisation's FOI page.

show quoted sections

FOI Commons, House of Commons

1 Attachment

Dear Ms Gibson,

 

 

Freedom of Information Request F20-657

 

Thank you for your request for information as copied below. You have asked
four questions about Members of Parliament, which we have sought to answer
below.

 

 1. Could you please clarify the following so that I have understood and
will understand your response better: That there are 72 MPs in the
House of Commons and none are employed by the House

 

This information is held by the House of Commons. We can clarify the
following:

 

o None of the 650 MPs elected to the House of Commons are employed by
the House.
o Despite this, we hold the dates of birth for 576 MPs
o Out of the 576 MPs for whom we hold information, 72 are aged 65 years
old or older.
o We do not hold the dates of birth of the remaining MPs, so cannot give
you this information.

 

 2. If this is the case, can you signpost me to whomever they are employed
by?

 

Some information is held by the House of Commons.

 

Members of Parliament are, effectively, employed by and answer to the
electorate.  They each operate in a similar way to a self-employed person,
running their own offices, employing their own staff and managing their
constituency work.

 

They are paid from HM Treasury, via a body called the Independent
Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA), who may hold some details about
dates of birth for pay and pensions purposes.  If you wish to redirect
your request to IPSA, their contact details can be found at
[1]https://www.theipsa.org.uk/.

 

Alternatively, you could ask the Members themselves for this information. 
However, they are not each classed as public authorities in accordance
with the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and are therefore not obliged to
respond to such requests.  MP contact details can be found at
[2]https://members.parliament.uk/members/Co....

 

 3. Can you also explain the relevance of the points 1 and 2 to my request
when my request was directed at you?

 

The relevance of the information we gave you in our response to your
previous request was that it was the information we held that was within
the scope of your questions. Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, we
are obliged to response to requests for information by confirming whether
or not we hold the information being requested, and if we do, by
disclosing that information to the extent that we hold it (unless specific
exemptions apply).

 

For your first question, in which you asked how many MPs are over 65 years
old, we confirmed what relevant information we held and we disclosed it to
you. For your second question, in which you asked for a list of names of
those who will be prioritised to receive the vaccine before Christmas or
otherwise, we told you that we didn’t hold the information.

 

We are only obliged to carry out these duties in relation to the
information that the House of Commons holds and we cannot answer for other
bodies or public authorities. However, when we do not hold the information
requested, we will try to be helpful and signpost to another public
authority where the information might be held. For your second question,
we did this by offering the name of a different public authority who you
can contact.

 

 4. I am cognisant that you are not a health-related organisation and
apologiges if this was inferred, however, it is the case that
organisations and corporations are now stipulating that all who work
for them are to be vaccinated and it is this policy that I seek to
clarify with yourself as it would be reasonable to assume that you
would hold or be privy to this information, if in fact, it exists.

 

The House of Commons does not hold information about the requirement of
MPs to be vaccinated.  MPs do not work for the House of Commons.

 

We understand that you may think that the House of Commons has a role in
monitoring or managing the healthcare arrangements of MPs, but as we
explained our previous response, it does not.  It may interest you to know
that there is a Parliamentary Health & Wellbeing Service that offers some
services to Members and staff of both Houses of Parliament, such as first
aid, occupational health and foreign travel advice, but neither Members
nor staff are required to use it.

 

 

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 & Information Team, House of
Commons, London SW1A 0AA or [3][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,
[4]www.ico.org.uk.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

IRIS Officer
Information Rights and Information Security

House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA
[5][IMG]

 

[6]House of Commons Privacy Notice for the public

 

The House of Commons welcomes feedback. If you have any compliments,
complaints or comments,
about the service that you have received please send an email
to [7][email address]

 

 

From: Christine Gibson <[FOI #705049 email]>
Sent: 14 December 2020 01:49
To: FOI Commons <[email address]>
Subject: Re: F20-597 Response

 

Dear FOI Commons,

I have received your response one day before the obligated deadline to
which you have indicated that you do not hold all the information and that
you iterate that the MPs are not employed by the House of Commons on two
ocassions within your response.

To enable me to progress this further, could you please clarity the
following so that I have understood and will understand your response
better:

1) That there are 72 MPs in the House of Commons and none are employed by
the House

2) If this is the case, can you signpost me to whomever they are employed
by?

3) Can you also explain the relevance of the points 1 and 2 to my request
when my request was directed at you?

4) I am cognisant that you are not a health-related organisation and
apologiges if this was inferred, however, it is the case that
organisations and corporations are now stipulating that all who work for
them are to be vaccinated and it is this policy that I seek to clarify
with yourself as it would be reasonable to assume that you would hold or
be privy to this information, if in fact, it exists.

I look forward to receiving clarification of your response in due course.

Yours faithfully

Christine Gibson

show quoted sections

Dear FOI Commons,

Many thanks for your insightful response as to the structure of our MPs. Although you have been very helpful in signposting to their contact details, no MPs are obliged to respond to me as none sit in Parliament who represent me, from Co Down in NI. None have responded to me to date on many other issues I have communicated to them on.

I wish you and your team a happy new year!

Yours sincerely,

Christine Gibson