PHSO executive and senior officers (again)

Jt Oakley made this Freedom of Information request to Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman,

Aimee Gasston states below:.....

' .better defining your request, please let us know. You might want to request the names of staff at a specific grade'

........Presumably, had I done so, you would not have been able to give me this information, owing to the privacy of the individuals concerned - so why direct me to do so?

::::

Then if the criteria of pay is not acceptable, I would refer you back to the request for executive and senior officers - as requested originally. Personally I thought that quite understandable. So cannot see why you would wish to prolong this request, by making even more work for the PHSO.

An organagram of the PHSO employees in the executive and senior roles ( 50 would be fine- . but those in post at the time of the return of my request to WDTK is acceptable) .

:::

There seems to became difficulty in understanding the term executive.

It it appears that it seems that you have assumed that I am requesting officers with the word 'executive' in their job title.

This is incorrect, as I would have specified that, has I wished it.

A dictionary definition for you to help your understanding standing of the term:

executive
adjective

relating to or having the power to put plans or actions into effect.

synonyms: administrative, decision-making, directorial, directing, controlling, managerial;

noun: executive; plural noun: executives; noun: the executive

a person with senior managerial responsibility in a business.

synonyms: chief, head, principal, senior official, senior manager.

:::::

As regards clinicians, you are stating that they have no public facing roles and therefore their names must be kept secret.

Could you please state which legal act specifies secrecy for this category of employee?

Because clearly the public has a right to know that complaints are not being monitored by a person with questionable qualifications.
::::

This request is to facilitate complainants understanding who has responsibility for what, and whom - as originally requested.

So I would hope that the PHSO would understand that to make a complaint, or to reference documents to senior officers for clarification , this information will enable complainants to do so. As complaints about PHSO staff are not seemingly always referred to senior officers immediately - as is the required process in other organisations.

Regards

JTOakley

:::::

Dear Ms TO

Your information request

I write further to your emails of 25 and 26 September 2013 in which you request the names of ‘executive officers and senior managers’. When we clarified your request with you, you explained you wanted the names of ‘the top paid 50 employees’.

The names and wages of the most senior members of staff at PHSO are published annually in our resource accounts which can be found on our website (www.ombudsman.org.uk/about-us/publications/annual-reports). However, as you have framed your request in terms of the amount people earn, I am withholding the remaining information which is not in the public domain under section 40(2) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. I am unable to provide you with the names of people who fall within the category ‘top paid 50 employees’ as this would be disclosing personal information about their salary. By way of explanation, employees are paid in line with salary bands. Therefore, providing a list of names of ‘the top paid 50 employees’ (or simply job titles) indicates to individuals who is paid more within the same salary band. This also applies if you place the names/job titles in a random order, as the cut-off point is within a pay band and would still indicate who was included or omitted. Further information can be found in the Information Commissioner’s guidance at: www.ico.org.uk/upload/documents/library/...

However, to assist you in your request, I have considered the information you have requested in relation to the highest paid salary bands.

In Table 1 I have included the names and job titles of all PHSO employees in the top salary bands (S1-S3) which is correct as of today. Please note Dame Julie Mellor is not included in this list as her wage is paid directly by the Treasury. The table below provides the information you have requested for 13 people, who are PHSO’s highest paid employees.

Table 1: Names of senior members of staff

Pay band grade
Name
Job title
S3
Helen Hughes
Chief Operating Officer
S2
Sally Sykes
Interim Executive Director of External Affairs and Strategy
S2
Mike Procter
Interim Executive Director Business Transformation
S2
Mike Bird
Interim Executive Director of Operations & Investigations
S2
Anne Harding
Legal Adviser
S1
Deborah Oliver
Interim Director of External Affairs
S1
Gavin McBurnie
Director - Clinical Advice
S1
Frank Garofalo
Director of Operations
S1
Graham Payne
Director of Finance, Planning & Performance
S1
Gwen Harrison
Director of Investigations & Resolution
S1
Marie Cheek
Director of Service Delivery
S1
Lynn Hugo
Director of HR, People & Talent
S1
Jack Kellett
Director of Complex Investigations (Health)

I have been able to provide you with the names and job titles of these senior roles as these individuals’ names are either regularly published or they are at level of seniority that there would be a reasonable expectation to have their name disclosed. The list of people named in Table 1 contains members of the Unitary Board and the Leadership Team.

As you know, we are currently transforming our business so that we are able to implement our strategy, More Impact for More People (www.ombudsman.org.uk/about-us/more-impact-for-more-people). Therefore, we are currently recruiting permanent members of staff to the interim roles and the names of the people in these roles is likely to change in the near future.

The next highest paid salary bands after those listed in Table 1 are those in the grades SA3, SA2, and SA1. These salary bands are for our clinical advisers. Table 2 shows the number of clinicians falling within these pay bands. These numbers extend beyond the highest paid 50 employees so I can include everyone at the SA1 grade. However, please note, that this is calculated on the full time equivalent salary of these individuals. In practice, all bar two of the clinicians that fall within these bands work on a part-time basis.

I am unable to release the names of these employees as clinicians are not in public-facing roles and would not reasonably expect their names to be published. As this is personal information, I am withholding their names under section 40(2) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Pay band grade
Number of clinical advisers at grade
SA3
13
SA2
6
SA1
25

If you are interested in the job roles that fall outside these highest paid employees that I listed above, please see a copy of our current organisational chart which we have previously provided to you (FDN-169972).

Please note that I have not been able to post this response via www.whatdotheyknow.com as the request and exchanges as contained below were from your personal email account.

I hope the information I have provided is useful. However, if you are unhappy with my handling or your request you can request an internal review by writing to the Review Team at: [email address]

If you remain dissatisfied it is open to you to approach the Information Commissioner’s Office. Details of how to do so can be found on their website at: www.ico.org.uk

Yours sincerely

Claire Helm
Freedom of Information/Data Protection Officer
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman
E: [email address]
W: www.ombudsman.org.uk

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Sent: 26 September 2013 13:16
To: foiofficer
Subject: Re: Your information request (FDN-172431)

The top paid 50 employees would do.

On 26 Sep 2013, at 12:40, foiofficer <[email address]> wrote:

PROTECT

Dear Ms [first name redacted] Oakley

Annotations made on the Whatdotheyknow.com website are not sent on to us (we receive requests and other correspondence through Whatdotheyknow.com but not comments added to an existing request). If you would like us to process your revised request, please send it to us by email.

Many thanks

Aimee Gasston
Freedom of Information / Data Protection Officer
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Please email the FOI/DP team at: [email address]

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Sent: 26 September 2013 10:55
To: foiofficer
Subject: Re: Your information request (FDN-172431)

Please read WDTK and respond.

On 26 Sep 2013, at 09:24, foiofficer <[email address]> wrote:

PROTECT

Dear Ms TO

Thank you for your further email of 25 September 2013, in which you have asked for the ‘names of [our] executive officers and senior managers’. Before we process your request, we will need to clarify what information exactly it is you seek. We have already provided you with the names of those members of the senior management team currently in post (as per the attached response, FDN-169972). Also, as you can see from the list of job titles in the attached response, we do not have any posts by the name of ‘executive officer’. If it would be helpful for us to provide you with a list detailing our pay and grading structure in order to aid you in better defining your request, please let us know. You might want to request the names of staff at a specific grade, or you might want to ask for the name of someone in a specific role. You might also find the ICO guidance here useful in helping you to frame your request: www.ico.org.uk/for_the_public/official_i...

Yours sincerely

Aimee Gasston
Freedom of Information / Data Protection Officer
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Please email the FOI/DP team at: [email address]

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Sent: 25 September 2013 17:29
To: foiofficer
Subject: Re: Your information request (FDN-172431)

Please respect my request and answer it.

I am clearly not asking for 'all names'.

I am asking for the names of your executive officers and senior managers because that us what my understanding of the term 'managers' is.

Thats a reasonable enquiry to a public organisation.

Regards

JTO

On 25 Sep 2013, at 16:45, foiofficer <[email address]> wrote:

PROTECT

By email
Ms JTO

25 September 2013

Dear Ms JTO

Your information request (FDN-172431)

Further to your email of 28 August 2013, I am writing in response to your information request.

You have asked for the name of our media manager. The post of Press and Media Manager (as detailed in the attached organogram) as yet remains unfilled. The Head of Media, Marketing & Internal Insight has not yet been appointed and nor has the Head of Health Policy & Insight. The Head of Parliamentary Policy & Insight is Rebecca Milner.

As we have previously advised, we are unable to provide you with the names of every member of staff in our organisation. This is because this information is personal information which is protected by s40(2) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. We have concluded that it would not be fair to release this information to you. You will remember that we refused to provide you with this information in response to your information request reference FDN-172431, and that this decision was upheld when it was reviewed.

If, however, there are any senior members of staff whose names you would like to know, which you are not already aware of, please let us know as it is likely we would be able to release these to you.

I hope that this information is helpful. If you are unhappy with my decision not to give you all the information you requested, you can ask for a review by writing to the address on the first page of this letter or by email to: [email address]

If you still have concerns after that, you can ask the Information Commissioner’s Office to look into your case. Their contact details are available on their website at: www.ico.org.uk

Yours sincerely

Aimee Gasston
Freedom of Information/Data Protection Officer
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Please email the FOI/DP team at: [email address]

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From: JTO
Sent: 28 August 2013 17:35
To: foiofficer
Subject: Re: Your information request (FDN-169972)

Thanks .. Helpful but it is too limited.

Surely there are more people in post in this long list than those stated?

Your Media manager must be in post for instance.

So please complete the list below with the names of those in post, as requested.

Regards

Janet [first name redacted] Oakley

On 28 Aug 2013, at 17:13, foiofficer <[email address]> wrote:

PROTECT

Dear Ms JTO

Please find attached a response to your information request.

Yours sincerely

Aimee Gasston
Freedom of Information / Data Protection Officer
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Please email the FOI/DP team at: [email address]

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From: JTO
Sent: 01 August 2013 17:38
To: Gasston Aimee
Subject: Re: Your information request (FDN-164783)

Thank you

1. Is the public allowed to know who the officers in these management posts are?

If so, please could send theme- as I have already asked for them.

2. Also, could you send me job titles of all those not stated, in the correct departments , as this management diagram gives no indication as to how any employees are dealing with cases - as front line investigators.

Regards

JTO

On 1 Aug 2013, at 15:50, Gasston Aimee <[email address]> wrote:

PROTECT

By email

1 August 2013

Dear Ms JTO

Your information request

Further to your email of 4 July 2013, I am writing with my response to your information request.

Further to my previous response to you (FDN-164783), where I explained that the organisation was in a period of transition, you have asked to see our current structure as it stands.

The first attachment details the current high level structure of PHSO as it stands. The further attachments detail the structure we will move to on 5 August 2013.

I hope that this information is helpful.

Yours sincerely

Aimee Gasston
Freedom of Information/Data Protection Officer

Please email the FOI/DP team at: [email address]

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From: JTO
Sent: 04 July 2013 16:50
To: foiofficer
Subject: Re: Your information request (FDN-164783)

We do not hold an organogram or structural chart of our organisation. PHSO’s structure is currently in transition as we reorganise to help us deliver our new strategic plan and aims. More information about these can be found on our website at: www.ombudsman.org.uk/about-us/more-impac... As these changes are still being completed, the structure of the organisation has not been finalised.

That is fine. I am happy to have the structure as it stands at date of supply. Clearly there must be one

. Please supply or review.

Regards

JT Oakley

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

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All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
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Subject: Re: AUTO-RESPONSE - Freedom of Information request - PHSO executive and senior officers (again)

Dear foiofficer,

I trust that you have already considered this judgement by the ICO
on non- facing and executive public employees?

Decision Notice FS50460634

Certainly there seems scope in this judgment for a re- evaluation
of your current response.

Yours sincerely,

Jt Oakley

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Reference: FS50460634
Date:
Public Authority: Address:
Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) Decision notice
28 November 2012
Department for Transport Great Minster House
33 Horseferry Road London
SW1P 4DR Decision (including any steps ordered)

Reference: FS50460634
Date:
Public Authority: Address:
Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) Decision notice
28 November 2012
Department for Transport Great Minster House
33 Horseferry Road London
SW1P 4DR Decision (including any steps ordered)
1. The complainant requested workplace contact details of a Department for Transport (DfT) official. The DfT refused to disclose this information and cited the exemption provided by section 40(2) (personal information) of the FOIA.
2. The Commissioner’s decision is that the DfT cited the exemption provided by section 40(2) incorrectly and that this information should have been disclosed.
3. The Commissioner requires the public authority to take the following steps to ensure compliance with the legislation.
 Disclose to the complainant the requested information.
4. The public authority must take these steps within 35 calendar days of the date of this decision notice. Failure to comply may result in the Commissioner making written certification of this fact to the High Court pursuant to section 54 of the Act and may be dealt with as a contempt of court.
Request and response
5. On 6 July 2012, the complainant wrote to the DfT and requested information in the following terms:
“Please supply the email address and direct telephone number of [named individual] blue badge team.”

6. The DfT responded on 26 July 2012. The request was refused, with the exemption provided by section 40(2) (personal information) of the FOIA cited.
7. The complainant responded on 4 August 2012 and requested an internal review. It responded with the outcome of the review on 13 August 2012 and stated that the refusal of the request was upheld.
Scope of the case
8. The complainant contacted the Commissioner on 13 August 2012 to complain about the way his request for information had been handled. The complainant argued that the information he had requested should have been disclosed as the individual named in the request was not, as the DfT had suggested, a junior employee and that it was legitimate for members of the public to be able to contact that individual.
Reasons for decision Section 40
9. Section 40(2) of the FOIA provides an exemption for information that is the personal data of an individual other than the requester and where the disclosure of that personal data would be in breach of any of the data protection principles. The task for the Commissioner when considering this exemption is twofold; first, it must be addressed whether the requested information constitutes the personal data of any third party. Secondly, it must be considered whether the disclosure of this information would be in breach of the data protection principles.
10. Covering first whether the requested information is the personal data of any third party, the definition of personal data is given in section 1(1) of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA):
“‘personal data’ means data which relate to a living individual who can be identified-
(a) from those data, or
(b) from those data and other information which is in the possession of, or is likely to come into the possession of, the data controller”.
11. The view of the Commissioner is that it is clear that the information requested would constitute the personal data of the individual named in the request. The wording of the request means that any information
falling within the scope of it would both identify and relate to the individual named in the request. This information would, therefore, constitute the personal data of that individual in accordance with the definition given in section 1(1) of the DPA.
12. Turning to whether disclosure of that personal data would be in breach of any of the data protection principles, the Commissioner has focussed here on the first data protection principle. The first principle requires that personal data be processed fairly and lawfully and the particular focus here is on whether disclosure would be, in general, fair to the data subject. In forming a view on whether disclosure would be fair, the Commissioner has taken into account the reasonable expectations of the data subject, the consequences of disclosure upon the data subject and whether there is legitimate public interest in the disclosure of the information in question.
13. On the issue of the reasonable expectations of the data subject, the DfT has stated that it has consulted the data subject and that this individual did not consent to the disclosure of their contact details. Whilst this is relevant here, it is important that the DfT does not give the impression to its staff that withholding their consent to the disclosure of their personal data has the result of removing that information from the sphere of the FOIA entirely. Even in the absence of consent, circumstances may mean that disclosure is nonetheless fair.
14. In this case the DfT referred to the data subject having ‘reluctantly’ agreed to the disclosure of his name. Whilst this may suggest that the data subject prefers to maintain a high degree of privacy about his occupation, the Commissioner notes that details of the occupation of this individual are publicly available to view on the website LinkedIn. Given this, and given that knowledge that an individual works as an official within the DfT would not generally be considered sensitive, the Commissioner does not accept that there is any unusually high expectation of privacy held by the data subject in relation to their occupation.
15. The DfT has described the data subject as a junior official as he is not at Senior Civil Service level. However, this individual has a job title - Head of the Regulatory Services and Information Branch - that does not concur with what the description of ‘junior official’ would commonly be taken to mean. Whilst this individual may not hold a position that is within the entity known as the Senior Civil Service, the Commissioner’s view is that their position of “Head of...” means that describing this individual as a junior official is not accurate.
16. The DfT has stated that this individual is not in a public-facing role. However, it has also stated that their role is to lead a team that “handle correspondence on general traffic management issues”. Given thisReference: FS50460634
description it appears likely that there will be circumstances where this individual is required to communicate with the public, even if their role does not generally involve responding to correspondence personally. This could be, for example, where complaints are made about responses provided by members of their team. For this reason the Commissioner is of the view that it is unlikely to be entirely accurate to describe the role of this individual as not public facing.
17. In general the approach of the Commissioner is that information that relates to an individual in their professional capacity will be subject to a significantly lower expectation of privacy than information concerning their private life. In particular, in this case he believes that it would be a reasonable expectation for an official at the level suggested by the job title of the data subject that their work contact details may be subject to disclosure. Although the DfT may have created an expectation that this information would not be disclosed by seeking consent to disclosure, this expectation was not realistic for the reasons given above.
18. As to the consequences of disclosure upon the data subject, the DfT has suggested that disclosure of the contact details may lead to the data subject receiving a high volume of telephone calls and that this may be a distraction from their day–to-day work. In response to this point the Commissioner refers to an example given in his published guidance on requests for personal data about public authority employees1.
19. In that example, the Commissioner found that it would be fair to disclose the workplace telephone numbers of public authority employees as the employees in question were of sufficient seniority that they would be capable of coping with any unwelcome phone calls that resulted. The Commissioner believes the situation to be similar here; whilst it may be the case that the disclosure of this telephone number will lead to the data subject receiving a higher volume of telephone calls, and that some of these may be unwelcome or the behaviour of the callers inappropriate, the data subject should be of sufficient seniority to cope with this without distress.
20. In response to the point made by the DfT that this could lead to a distraction from the day-to-day work of the data subject, the Commissioner would expect that the DfT will have measures in place to deal with problems arising from telephone contact. Such measures could be, for example, informing a caller that they may only communicate inwriting in future. The Commissioner would also stress that if the primary concern of the DfT was that the complainant may use the telephone number inappropriately, by making an excessive volume of calls for example, it would have been more appropriate to refuse the request as vexatious under section 14 of the FOIA.
21. The Commissioner is of the view, therefore, that even were disclosure to lead to a significant increase in the volume of telephone calls received by the data subject, this is not likely to result in distress to that individual. As to whether disclosure would be likely to lead to distress in other ways, the Commissioner believes not, as this information relates to the data subject solely in their professional capacity and so is not of any particular sensitivity.
22. As to whether there is any legitimate public interest in this information, whilst the exemption provided by section 40(2) is not qualified by the public interest, in relation to any disclosure of personal data it is necessary for a condition from Schedule 2 of the DPA to be fulfilled in order to comply with the first data protection principle. The Commissioner has considered here the sixth condition, which is satisfied if the disclosure is necessary in the public interest.
23. The Commissioner believes that there is a public interest in favour of disclosure as this would facilitate ease of contact with a public authority and, in particular, with an official whose role involves responding to correspondence from the public. The DfT has argued that this public interest is met through generic contact details, not relating to any individual, that were disclosed to the complainant. In response to this point the Commissioner would note that it is a standard approach for an organisation to provide both generic contact details, such as a telephone helpline number and a departmental email address, but also to provide the contact details of individuals in order to simplify the process of communicating with the correct individual. There is, therefore, public interest in disclosure of the information in question, even if there is also disclosure of generic contact details.
24. As to whether disclosure of the information would be necessary for the purposes of that public interest, the issue here is whether this public interest could be served through other means without any impact upon the privacy of the data subject. The stance of the DfT in response to this request suggests that this information is not available elsewhere so the Commissioner finds that it would be necessary for this to be disclosed in response to the complainant’s request in order to satisfy this public interest.
25. The Commissioner has found that the data subject could not hold a reasonable expectation that the information in question would not be disclosed and that this disclosure would not result in distress to the datasubject. He has also found that disclosure is necessary for the purposes of a legitimate public interest. He therefore concludes that disclosure would be fair and in accordance with the first data protection principle.
26. As disclosure would not be in breach of the first data protection principle, the overall finding of the Commissioner is that the exemption provided by section 40(2) is not engaged. At paragraph 3 above the DfT is required to disclose this information.
Other matters
27. When corresponding with the ICO the DfT stated that if the ICO did not agree that section 40(2) was engaged, it wished to have the opportunity to consider other exemptions, in particular section 36(2)(c) (prejudice to the effective conduct of public affairs). The Commissioner did not, however, revert to the DfT to offer it the opportunity to cite additional exemptions prior to issuing this notice.
28. The approach of the ICO is to offer a public authority one further opportunity to explain its position following the receipt of a complaint made under section 50 of the FOIA. Where a public authority wishes to cite further exemptions, it should do so at the earliest opportunity. This is particular important where section 36 is cited owing to the additional period of time that is likely to be taken whilst the qualified person considers their opinion.
29. In the interests of resolving cases promptly, the ICO will not generally revert again to a public authority to offer the chance to cite further exemptions prior to issuing a decision notice.

Dear foiofficer,

If PHSO employees advertise their posts on the Internet then it can hardly be said the PHSO needs to protect their privacy as the ICO has recognised.

http://www.linkedin.com/pub/aimee-gassto...

Yours sincerely,

Jt Oakley

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Dear Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman,

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

I am writing to request an internal review of Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman's handling of my FOI request 'PHSO executive and senior officers (again)'.

Review as it needs clarification as to whether the PHSO has to comply with the ICO judgement or not.

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

Yours faithfully,

Jt Oakley

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

1 Attachment

Dear Jt Oakley

Your information request

I write in reference to our recent correspondence in relation to your request for the names for ‘PHSO executive and senior officers’. Though you have recently asked for a review of my handling of FDN-174444, you also asked further questions in reply to my response to your last information request. I wanted to take the opportunity to provide you with some further information which I hope will answer your request in light of your further correspondence.

I am sorry that you feel frustrated that we have not provided you with the information you were seeking in respect of the ‘PHSO executive and senior officers’. As PHSO does not have large numbers of ‘senior staff’ or ‘Executive officers’, it has been difficult for us to identify and understand precisely what information it is you are seeking. Nonetheless, we provided you with information that we hoped would resolve your request, and when it became clear this was not the information you wanted, we have tried to help you in clarifying your request.

When you most recently requested the names of the top 50 paid individuals, I explained I could not answer the request in the way you had framed it. I explained the reasons for this but provided you with the names and positions of members of the leadership team and directors. These are the most senior members of staff who are responsible for making strategic and policy decisions about the way PHSO operates, which seemed to be the focus of your request.

Your recent emails have now helped clarify that you require more information than we have previously provided. As such, I have now provided you with the names and job titles of those staff who sit lower in the organisation structure but who are also responsible for different business functions within PHSO such as , Head of ICT, Head of Executive Office and Head of Risk, and Head of Customer Services. Again, I have attached the current organisation chart to enable you to see where these members of staff sit within the organisation. As you know we are currently under-going a restructure and some of these posts/named individual may change over the coming months.

In your email of 18 November 2013 you reiterated your request but also asked for ‘phone extension numbers’. I have searched through all of your correspondence and as far as I can see this is the first time you have made this request. Therefore, we will process this as a new information request from the date of your email (our reference FDN-178734).

Finally, I should be grateful if in future you allow us 20 working days to respond to your follow up questions/requests before you email to ask more questions about the same issue and request an internal review. Your current approach makes your requests difficult to follow and prevents us from responding as quickly as you would like. To help you phrase your requests so that you get the best results, you might find it helpful to read the Information Commissioner’s advice to requesters: http://www.ico.org.uk/for_the_public/off...

Yours sincerely


Claire Helm
Freedom of Information/Data Protection Officer
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman
E: [email address]
W: www.ombudsman.org.uk

Post Holders Job Title
Amanda Harrington Interim Senior Investigation Manager (Health)
Andrew Medlock Head of Customer Services
Anne Harding Legal Adviser
Christine Moulder Casework Knowledge & Learning Manager
Christopher McAlpine Deputy Director of Customer Services & Assessment
Clint Taylor Head of Corporate Planning
Craig Turton Interim Senior Health Policy Manager (Projects)
Deborah Oliver Interim Director of External Affairs
Diane Reay Head of Media, Marketing & Internal Communications
Frank Garofalo Director of Operations
Gavin McBurnie Director - Clinical Advice
Graham Payne Director of Finance, Planning & Performance
Graham Williams Lead Clinical Adviser within CAD
Gwen Harrison Director of Investigations & Resolution
Helen Hughes Chief Operating Officer
Jack Kellett Director of Complex Investigations (Health)
Jennifer Elkeles Senior Investigation Manager
Katharine Stevenson Information and Records Manager
Linda Tomlinson Acting Deputy Director of Customer Services & Assessment
Lorna Stoddart Organisational Development Manager
Luke Whiting Head of Freedom of Information/Data Protection
Denise Bird-Newell Director of HR, People & Talent
Maria Leader Lead Clinician
Marie Cheek Director of Service Delivery
Marko Jovanovic Deputy Director of Parliamentary Investigations
Martin Jacobs Financial Controller
Mike Bird Interim Executive Director of Operations & Investigation
Mike Browne Interim Deputy Director of Media & Comms
Mike Procter Interim Executive Director Business Transformation
Neil Armstrong Casework Policy & Guidance Manager
Pauline Elliott Interim Deputy Director of Health Investigations
Rebecca Milner Head of Parliamentary Policy & Insight
Rob Davies Stakeholder Relationship Manager
Ros Page Head of Procurement, Project & Business Management
Sally Sykes Executive Director External Affairs & Strategy
Sara Wilcox Marketing & Communications Manager
Sarah Fox Ombudsman's Casework Manager
Simon Collier Head of Learning & Development
Steve Brown Head of Assurance, Risk and Programme Management Office
Susan Lowson Lead Clinician - Health Investigations
Susan Thomson Head of Executive Office
Suzannah Beazley Head of Review Team
Tom Stoddart Head of ICT

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All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK Government quality mark initiative for information security products and services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Dear foiofficer,

Thank you. I am grateful that someone has managed to work out what executive and senior officers are ....at last.

Can I assume these are now all in post, post reorganisation?

The Information Acts do not preclude me from informing you of ICO Decisions and areas of the request that seem unfamiliar to you and therefore attempting to clarify a request to assist you to answer it.

Since other people have requested contact telephone numbers ....and been refused, ( see other requests - C Rock ) clearly you will now wish to answer their requests as you are now aware of the ICO Decision on the matter, the time element is long passed and you would not wish to misinform a requestor.

Yours sincerely,

Jt Oakley

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Dear Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman,

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

I am writing to request an internal review of Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman's handling of my FOI request 'PHSO executive and senior officers (again)'.

See clarification

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

Yours faithfully,

Jt Oakley

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Complaintsphso, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

PROTECT

Dear Ms [first name redacted] Oakley

I am writing in response to your email of 2 December 2013. I am sorry that you are dissatisfied with our handling of your information request titled, ‘PHSO executive and senior officers (again).

Under our internal complaints procedure, your complaint has been passed to the Head of Risk, Assurance and Programme Management Office, Mr Steve Brown.

Mr Steve Brown will consider your concerns and will send you a full reply once his review is complete. This review of your complaint is the only review that we will undertake.

We aim to reply to such complaints within 40 working days.

Yours sincerely

Hannah Jones
Review Team Support Manager
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman
T: 0300 061 4076
E: [email address]
W: www.ombudsman.org.uk

show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK Government quality mark initiative for information security products and services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

'Your current approach makes your requests difficult to follow and prevents us from responding as quickly as you would like. ....'

My current approach? Seems perfectly clear to me.

I don't set the time limits on response. The FoI and DP Acts do.

Anyone else confused?

But if the PHSO has not informed its staff as to what an executive officer is... (Goodness knows how employees know who their line managers are) ...I agree, it must be very difficult to think cogently about which information to give out.

Brenda Prentice left an annotation ()

Again, we can guess what Steve will save, we could write it for him.....it is predicable.

Brown Steve, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

4 Attachments

 

 

Steve Brown

Head of Risk, Assurance and Programme Management Office

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

E: [email address]

W: [1]www.ombudsman.org.uk

 

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show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

References

Visible links
1. http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/
http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/
2. http://www.facebook.com/phsombudsman
3. http://www.twitter.com/PHSOmbudsman
4. http://www.linkedin.com/company/parliame...

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

19. In that example, the Commissioner found that it would be fair to disclose the workplace telephone numbers of public authority employees as the employees in question were of sufficient seniority that they would be capable of coping with any unwelcome phone calls that resulted. The Commissioner believes the situation to be similar here; whilst it may be the case that the disclosure of this telephone number will lead to the data subject receiving a higher volume of telephone calls, and that some of these may be unwelcome or the behaviour of the callers inappropriate, the data subject should be of sufficient seniority to cope with this without distress.

::::::::::::::::::::

So the PHSO, despite its employees linking themselves to the PHSO n LinkedIn, thinks that their senior officers would be deluged with phone calls and be unable to cope if their contact and telephone numbers were disclosed numbers.

This either means that they consider the thousands if complainants would harass them..admittedly the 96.4 percent of disappointed complainants would have every excuse to do so, or that they wish to remain completely remote while working for the public.

Added to this is the internal turmoil, caused by a reorganisation,which now means the public isn't quite sure of whom to make a complaint. Or even how it is being progressed..if it is.

So it is justifiable to ask for the emails or telephone extension numbers of senior officers to help complainants in their quest for justice in this difficult transition.

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

In your email of 18 November 2013 you reiterated your request but also asked for ‘phone extension numbers’. I have searched through all of your correspondence and as far as I can see this is the first time you have made this request. Therefore, we will process this as a new information request from the date of your email (our reference FDN-178734).

Still unanswered

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Contact Extension numbers and email addresses referred to ICO

D. Speers left an annotation ()

Doesn't look like 2014 will see any changes!
But Happy New Year.....hopefully!

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Same to you Dee...

Call me cynical ..but I don't think 2014 is going to be the:

Year of Openess, Candour and Transparency

- where the PHSO is concerned.

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

PROTECT

24th January 2014

Case Reference Number FS50525889

Dear Mrs TO

Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA)
Your FOIA request to PHSO dated 25 September 2013 for names of PHSO executive officers and senior managers

Further to our letter of 6 January 2014, I write to inform you that your case has now been allocated to me to investigate. This letter will explain how I intend to do this. It will also provide you with contact details so that you can get in touch with me if you need to.

What happens now

Where possible the Information Commissioner prefers complaints to be resolved informally and we ask both parties to be open to compromise. With this in mind, I will write to the public authority and ask it to revisit your request. It may wish to reverse or amend its position. If it does, it will contact you again directly about this.

In any event, it must provide us with its full and final arguments in support of its position. Once I receive its arguments, I will consider its reply before either contacting you to discuss the matter further or preparing a decision notice. Further information is available on the Information Commissioner’s website:
http://www.ico.org.uk/complaints/~/media...

The request

On 25 September 2013 you requested the names of PHSO executive officers and senior managers. On 26 September 2013 you clarified that the top 50 paid employees would do.

The PHSO responded. It provided you with the names of employees within the top salary bands but said it could not provide you with the name of the 50 highest paid employees as any further information, other than that which was provided, was exempt from disclosure under section 40(2) FOIA.

You requested an internal review on 24 October 2013. The PHSO sent you the outcome of its internal review on 23 December 2013. It upheld its original position.

My investigation will look at whether the PHSO is correct when it says it is entitled to rely on the exemption it has cited.

The scope of the case

The focus of my investigation will be to determine whether the PHSO handled your request in accordance with the FOIA. Specifically, I will look at whether the PHSO is entitled to rely on section 40(2) FOIA as a basis for refusing to provide the withheld information.

Please contact me within the next 10 working days, that is, by 6 February 2014 if there are matters other than these that you believe should be addressed. This will help avoid any unnecessary delay in investigating your complaint. If I do not hear from you by this date, my investigation will focus only upon the matters identified above.

If you have any queries at any time you are welcome to write to me at the above address, at casework@ico.gsi.gov.uk (please ensure that you quote the above case reference) or by telephoning me on 01625 545539.

Yours sincerely

Gemma Garvey
Senior Case Officer

______________________________

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Please note that the ICO response does not cover the whole of the request.

Dear Brown Steve,

Please only reply via this website.

Yours sincerely,

Jt Oakley

Dear Brown Steve,

Please only reply via this website on all FoI requests.

Yours sincerely,

Jt Oakley

Dear PHSO

Please only reply via this website on all FoI requests.

Yours sincerely,

Jt Oakley

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

I retracted the top paid individuals request, suggested by the PHSO.

I required the top 50 employees as in the PHSO 'FAMILY Tree ' and their telephone extension numbers.

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Thanks to this arduous request I was able to further my complaint to the PHSO, which Dame Julie Mellor upheld.

If anyone else is having the difficulties that I had with obtaining the names of whom to contact - since letters go unanswered, the names of PHSO employees are often on the public Internet site of LinkedIn.

For anyone unfamiliar with it it is often used by people looking for other jobs and hoping to make contacts. Anyone can join.