Dear Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman,

Russell Barr, Director of Investigations, wrote:

"Every week I receive emails and phone calls from managers here with thank you notes from people who have used our service and felt that difference. This is in cases that we don’t uphold as well as the ones that we do."

http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/about-us/our...

1. Please provide details of the number of emails Mr Barr received from PHSO managers with thank you notes from people who have used your service and felt the difference in each of the past 10 weeks prior to the date of his claim.

2. Please provide details of the number of phone calls Mr Barr received from PHSO managers with thank you notes from people who have used your service and felt the difference in each of the past 10 weeks prior to the date of his claim.

3. Please disaggregate the figures provided in answer to 1 and 2 to show how many concerned people whose cases you did/did not uphold.

Yours faithfully,

J Roberts

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

CA Purkis left an annotation ()

Thank you notes and emails? How about the emails and correspondence stating how UNHAPPY people are. Honestly - this little bit of marketing is a new low. How long has Russell Barr been at the PHSO? A minute? Or is it two? And the notes are pouring in?

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

The PHSO should certainly be able to provide the number of complimentary email etc, since he has specified that they are sent to him...and definitely within the £'s constraints.

D. Speers left an annotation ()

As my PHSO "Buddy" would like to think Russell Barr is looking at my case!
Perception v reality it seems!

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Dear J Roberts

 

Thank you for your email of 22 December 2014 in which you requested
information regarding a blog post on the Ombudsman’s website by Mr Russell
Barr, Director of Investigations.

 

When you made a request for similar information on 16 November 2014, I
explained that the principal purpose of Mr Martin’s report was to
highlight the good work that staff had been doing.  Mr Barr’s blog served
a similar purpose.

 

PHSO receives feedback from users of our service in a number of ways.  For
example, a customer survey is undertaken by an independent third party on
a regular basis to gauge the level of satisfaction with the service
provided by PHSO.  In addition, feedback is frequently received directly
from users of our service during general contact with our staff.  Most
feedback that is received directly from users of our service is dealt with
at that contact; however, some feedback is retained in case we want to use
it in publications like our annual report, or for use in other internal or
external communication.

 

I hope you find this information helpful.  Should you have any further
queries, or would like to seek a review of my decision you can write to me
at [1][email address].

 

Regards

 

David Thomas

FOI/Data Protection Officer

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

E: [2][email address]

W: [3]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

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]
2. mailto:[email address]
3. http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/
http://www.ombudsman.org.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 'Russel Barr's comment on thank you notes'.

No attempt has been made to address the detail of my straightforward request. Instead, reference is made to a "similar" request concerning a remark made by Mick Martin.

Please provide the specific information I have requested which Russel Barr has claimed exists. Counting the emails and letters should be a quick and simple matter. This request is fundamentally distinct from the one concerning Mick Martin.

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

Yours faithfully,

J Roberts

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

J Roberts left an annotation ()

The previous request which Mr Thomas refers to concerns a quote by Mick Martin - "A considerable body of compliments":

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/a...

It was disclosed that the average number of compliments was 7 per a month. This figure is quite small compared to amount of complaint- related correspondence received by the PHSO. In the month of May 2014, for example, the PHSO received 352 emails at the complaintsaboutphso address in addition to 83 telephone calls recorded as complaints made through its switchboard. If a record existed of how many complaints were made direct to members of the review team, the total figure would be higher. If 7 is "considerable" what is 435?

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/t...

++Feedbackaboutus@ombudsman.org.uk, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Dear J Roberts
 
We are writing in response to your email of 21 January 2015.
 
We are sorry that you are dissatisfied with our handling of your
information request
entitled ‘'Russell Barr's comment on thank you notes’.
 
Under our internal complaints procedure, your complaint has been passed to
our Head of Risk, Assurance and Programme Management Office, Mr Steve
Brown.
 
Mr 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.
 
Kind regards
 
 
Customer Care Team
 
 
_____________________________________________
  
 

show quoted sections

Brown Steve, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

4 Attachments

 

 

Steve Brown

Head of Risk and Assurance

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

E: [email address]

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

 

Follow us on

[2]fb  [3]twitter  [4]linkedin

 

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...

J Roberts left an annotation ()

"Please do keep in mind that the information sought stems from anecdotal comments made by Mr Barr."

What Mr Barr actually said (published on the PHSO website):

"Every week I receive emails and phone calls from managers here with thank you notes from people who have used our service and felt that difference. This is in cases that we don’t uphold as well as the ones that we do."

Definition of anecdotal:

"(Of an account) not necessarily true or reliable"

http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/defini...

Interesting.

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

So Mr Barr is not necessarily to be believed?

Tut.

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Dear J Roberts

 

I write further to the response sent Mr Steve Brown regarding the internal
review of your information request.  Please accept my sincere apologies
for not fully explaining my decision when I wrote to you previously. 

 

Having regard to that request, I have concluded that it is not possible to
provide you with the information you’ve asked for within the appropriate
time limits created by section 12 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
This is because the type of information we need to search for is not kept
permanently in individual mailboxes, but is recorded on individual case
files.  As soon as those emails are recorded on the individual case file,
they are removed from individual mailboxes.  As we are unable to say which
specific cases the emails were saved to there would be no way of
determining the number of compliments received by Russell Barr without
carrying out a manual search of all of our case files. 

 

Since the time of your request, new measures have been put in place to
capture and record customer feedback we receive about our work, both
positive and negative.  That said, the timeframe you have identified in
your information request is not covered by these new measures, and so I
remain unable to provide any information relevant to your request. 

 

If you have any further queries you can write to me at
[1][email address].

 

David Thomas

FOI/Data Protection Officer

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

E: [2][email address]

W: [3]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

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]
2. mailto:[email address]
3. http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/
http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

You left an annotation (17 April 2015)

Usual story...the PHSO has no idea why it should monitoring anything.

Because it's philosophy has been one arrogance - dependent on its ability to operate in secret,

There being no need for openess and transparency towards the public.

In this case, an officer made a public statement without being able to demonstrate that it was correct - seemingly content to rest on the assumption no one would check it.

As usual, it's down to a member of the public to point out a glaring hole in its monitoring procedures to improve the requirement for of openness, transparency and candour.

J Roberts left an annotation ()

JT Oakley,

Spot on!

It seems to me that the PR machine of the PHSO will stop at nothing in its attempt to make the organisation appear fit for purpose. The anecdotal evidence of Russel Barr is far removed from the facts. Below is data on what telephone callers to the PHSO who left feedback thought of its service and decisions:

In December 2014 and January 2015, option 3 was selected by 589 (183+406) callers. Only two callers left compliments. In other words, more than 99.66% of callers who gave feedback about a decision or PHSO service were not complimentary.

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/c...

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Any public statements, such as Mr Barr's, should accurate - and provably so- before they are made.

Even more worrying is that the PHSO's FOIA department seems to be adding unrequired PR- steered statements to its request responses as 'helpful' information, whilst avoiding answering the initial, perfectly plain, request.

....Seemingly hoping requesters won't notice, or be forced to make clarifications to obvious points in the initial request, which the FOIA department then files as 'new requests'.

Too many 'new requests' on the same point and the FOIA department will use them ito proving that a requester is being vexatious.

Fortunately this sort of wearing game-playing doesn't wash with the QC and public representatives at a Tribunal....

http://www.informationtribunal.gov.uk/DB...

....even though the ICO seemingly waives through any incorrect statement the PHSO makes, without checking the facts.

Nb Complaints about the ICO go to the PHSO.

In my opinion, ' clean ' FOIA responses from the PHSO are becoming certainly becoming less prevalent and I would hazard a guess that this is simply because they are made in public, via WDTK.

....And I make this point - having turned out miles of PR text during a 17 year career in PR - and so having some familiarity and experience in the the medium.

D. Speers left an annotation ()

This behavior is exactly why I cant just accept any decision meted out by PHSO.....the info is often fundamentally flawed.
Give me REAL honesty and tell me why my son has died, not just what you say happened.I need evidence!
FACT: a weapon cant be found! Issue No 1
no records of a fight on the ward! Issue No2
not enough notes Issue No 3
etc etc etc etc etc etc etc
Truth may hurt but lies hurt more!

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

He's appears that he is ex-Met police.

This may- or may not - ,be relevant to the divergance in opinion as to the accuracy and of a statement made in the PHSO website.

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Apparently government bodies make up compliments from 'customers'.

Who would have thought it?

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2015/08/...

D. Speers left an annotation ()

From 2015 FACT: a weapon cant be found! Issue No 1
no records of a fight on the ward! Issue No2
not enough notes Issue No 3
etc etc etc etc etc etc etc
Truth may hurt but lies hurt more!

This from the Director of investigations at PHSO, a man who was an MET detective but didnt appear to worry about correct answers (but maybe its the time he spent working for Astra Zenca Pharmaceuticals that changed his priorities?)

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

As it is rumoured that Russell Barr quit the PHSO (with immediate effect), one can only assume the tremendous amount of gratitude for the complaint services of the PHSO from happy complainants, (Seemingly transmitted via post-it notes) eventually dried up somewhat.

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