Total Annual Figures for Compromise Agreements, etc.

Paul Cardin made this Freedom of Information request to Bradford City Council

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 refused by Bradford City Council.

Dear Bradford City Council,

Please supply totals for the following:

Since the inception of Bradford City Council, or as far as records go back, the annual figures for the total number of current employees or ex-employees of Bradford City Council who have signed compromise agreements directly related to the resolving of dispute(s) / grievance(s) / internal and external investigation(s)/ whistleblowing incident(s).

In addition to this, annual figures for the number of current employees / ex-employees who have agreed, following the matter being raised and made conditional as part of a compromise agreement drawn up by the body acting as Bradford City Council's legal team, to forgo their right to approach the council in the future with Freedom of Information and/or DPA Subject Access requests under the relevant Acts.

Please note that I do not seek or require any personal information such as names and addresses – only the total figures for each subject area.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Cardin

Dear Bradford City Council,

By law, I believe the authority should have responded promptly and
by 1st February 2011.

Although I have received no response, to assist, I would like to
'sharpen' and reduce the scope of the original request as follows:

Please exclude all COT3 Agreements and all compromise agreements
drawn up in the following circumstances:

1. Purely redundancy situations
2. Purely PILON (pay in lieu of notice) situations
3. Equal pay claims
4. TUPE situations

Further to this, please reduce the time period to the years between
2005 and 2010 i.e. the last six years.

I am researching this particular area and aim to view trends and
movements both regionally and nationally. It would benefit myself
and the authority if the figures reached were as accurate as
possible.

When responding, please give figures in calendar year format e.g.
2005 - 1; 2006 - 3; 2007 - 2; etc.

Yours faithfully,

Paul Cardin

Joanne Hindmarsh, Bradford City Council

Dear Mr Cardin,

I refer to your request of 3^rd February 2011 in relation to compromise
agreements.

It is taking longer than we anticipated to retrieve the information you
requested.

I am writing to let you know that we are still in the process of
extracting the information and that we hope to provide you with a response
by 10th March 2011.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us, quoting
ref. FoI110103.

Yours sincerely,

Freedom of Information

Department of Business Support Services

Strategic Support .$B!|.(B Commissioning and Procurement .$B!|.(B Human
Resources

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council - 7th Floor, City Exchange,
61 Hall Ings, Bradford BD1 5SG

T 01274 434506

E [Bradford City Council request email]

W www.bradford.gov.uk

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Dear Joanne Hindmarsh,

Thank you for the update,

Yours sincerely,

Paul Cardin

Matt Burghardt, Bradford City Council

Dear Sir,

In response to your request for the following information:

1. The annual figures for the total number of current employees or
ex-employees of Bradford City Council (the correct title is City of
Bradford Metropolitan District Council ) who have signed compromise
agreements directly related to the resolving of dispute(s) / grievance(s)
/ internal and external investigation(s)/whistleblowing incident(s).

2. The annual figures for the number of current employees / ex-employees
who have agreed, following the matter being raised and made conditional as
part of a compromise agreement drawn up by the body acting as Bradford
City Council's legal team, to forgo their right to approach the Council in
the future with Freedom of Information and/or DPA Subject Access requests
under the relevant Acts.

You have asked that figures be provided in calendar years between the
period 2005 and 2010 and to include COT3 settlements (drawn up using the
services of ACAS).

The Council does not keep figures for the number of compromise agreements
it enters into. The Council does hold records of compromise agreements
but the information is not recorded in an easily retrievable format as the
information is not stored in a separate system and would mean an officer
retrieving and looking through many individual personnel files. As a
consequence the time taken to extract and collate this information would
exceed the appropriate time limit of 18 hours provided under the Freedom
of Information Act.

The Council only keeps figures for COT3 settlements which relate to
issued Employment Tribunal proceedings and this information for the last
6 years as you have requested is provided below. Please note that the
proceedings may have been issued in an earlier year than when the
settlement was entered into .

The information provided excludes any cases involving equal pay and part
time worker pension issues. The figures show the number of COT3
settlements but not all settlements have involved the payment of money by
the Council . The Council does not hold information about school based
staff where they are not Council employees for example staff in voluntary
aided, foundation schools etc. The Council also does not hold complete
information for Council employed teaching and other school based staff.
Since April 2009 the Council's Legal Services section has not acted for
schools at employment tribunals, other than in equal pay cases.
Furthermore, prior to this date the Council did not act for all schools at
employment tribunals as some schools obtained their own legal
representation.

The Council cannot say which COT3 settlements involved current or former
employees or what precisely the Employment Tribunal related to (ie whether
resolving of disputes/grievances/internal and external investigations /
whistleblowing incidents.) as this information is not recorded in an
easily retrievable format and would mean an officer retrieving and looking
through the individual case files. As a consequence the time taken to
extract and collate this information would exceed the appropriate time
limit of 18 hours provided under the Freedom of Information Act.

In addition the Council cannot say whether any current/former employees
agreed following the matter being raised and made conditional as part of a
compromise agreement drawn up by the body acting as Bradford City
Council’s legal team to forgo their right to approach the Council in the
future with Freedom of Information and/or DPA Subject Access requests
under the relevant Acts as this information is not recorded in an easily
retrievable format and would mean an officer retrieving and looking
through the individual case files. As a consequence the time taken to
extract and collate this information would exceed the appropriate time
limit of 18 hours provided under the Freedom of Information Act.

The number of COT3 settlements is as follows:

2005 5
2006 3 (including 2 cases which were combined counted as one)
2007 6
2008 5
2009 6
2010 9 (including 2 cases which were combined counted as one)

If you are not satisfied with this response you may ask for a review of
this decision by contacting [Bradford City Council request email] or by writing to Freedom
of Information, 7th Floor, City Exchange, 61 Hall Ings, Bradford, West
Yorkshire, BD1 5SG.

If you are still not satisfied with the outcome of the internal review you
have the right of appeal to the Information Commissioner who can be
contacted at:

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Tel: 01625 545700
URL: [1]http://www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

Yours faithfully

Matt

Matt Burghardt
Assistant Director, Human Resources (Business Support)

Strategic Support ● Commissioning/Procurement ● Human Resources

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council : 6th Floor City Exchange,
Bradford, BD1 5SG

T: 01274 436135
F: 01274 434614
E: [email address]
[2]www.bradford.gov.uk

The information in this email and any attachments is confidential. It is
intended solely for the attention of the named addressee(s). If you are
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show quoted sections

Dear Matt Burghardt,

Please re-read my intitial request, the reduced scope request and respond again.

I did not ask you to include COT3 Agreements, but to EXCLUDE these and a number of other circumstances,

many thanks in advance,

Yours sincerely,

Paul Cardin

Matt Burghardt, Bradford City Council

I am on annual leave from Friday 4th March to Tuesday 8th March
2011,inclusive.

If your query is urgent, please contact Deb Maclean (x2018) in my absence,
otherwise I will respond to your email upon my return.

Matt Burghardt
Assistant Director - Human Resources

Matt Burghardt, Bradford City Council

Dear Sir

Thank you for your email below. The Council understood your second email
to mean that you were requesting details of COT3 agreements as well as
compromise agreements unless they related to the four categories you had
detailed.

I have replied to your request regarding compromise agreements in my
response dated 9 March 2011.

If you are not satisfied with this response you may ask for a review of
this decision by contacting [Bradford City Council request email] or by writing to

Freedom of Information
7th Floor, City Exchange,
61 Hall Ings, Bradford,
West Yorkshire, BD1 5SG.

If you are still not satisfied with the outcome of the internal review you
have the right of appeal to the Information Commissioner who can be
contacted at:

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Tel: 01625 545700
URL: [1][1]http://www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

Yours faithfully

Matt Burghardt
Assistant Director, Human Resources (Business Support)

Strategic Support ● Commissioning/Procurement ● Human Resources

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council : 6th Floor City Exchange,
Bradford, BD1 5SG

T: 01274 436135
F: 01274 434614
E: [email address]
[2]www.bradford.gov.uk

The information in this email and any attachments is confidential. It is
intended solely for the attention of the named addressee(s). If you are
not the intended recipient you are not authorised to, and must not copy,
distribute, use or retain this message or any part of it

show quoted sections

Dear Bradford City Council,

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

I am writing to request an internal review of Bradford City Council's handling of my FOI request 'Total Annual Figures for Compromise Agreements, etc.'.

Please take into account all the information and requests I have supplied to date. 263 English councils have responded positively and in full.

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

Yours faithfully,

Paul Cardin

Andrea Hall, Bradford City Council

2 Attachments

FAO Paul Cardin

Dear Sir,

Please find attached letter from Becky Hellard regarding the above.

Thank you.

Regards
Andrea Hall
PA to Becky Hellard
Strategic Director Council Change Programme and Director of Finance

l Information & Customer Services l Revenues & Benefits l Finance

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council, 5th Floor Britannia House,
Hall Ings, Bradford BD1 1HX
' 01274 432800 (Phone)
7 01274 395978 (Fax)
e-mail: <[1]mailto:[email address]>
Visit our website at www.bradford.gov.uk
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Paul Cardin left an annotation ()

Bradford City Council went to internal review, before deciding against supplying most of the information.

Please link here to read about the further aspects of this request:

www.easyvirtualassistance.co.uk/page4.html

...including councils who have attempted to prevent individuals from exercising their statutory FOI / DP querying rights.

There is a growing trend for the use of compromise agreements, not just in the area of disputes or whistleblowing, but also in less controversial areas of redundancy, severance or equal pay claims. Some councils have yet to answer this query - and to date, 65 working days have elapsed.