Consultation open on Official Information Act - Ombudsman
Tue 03 Nov 2015
Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem is seeking public feedback on the use of the Official Information Act (OIA) as part of a review into public ...
Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem is seeking public feedback on the use of the Official Information Act (OIA) as part of a review into public sector OIA practices. Consultation closes on Thursday 5 November 2015.
Launched on 23 October 2015, three online surveys aim to gather user experiences and perceptions of how the OIA is working in practice. Members of the public, journalists, Members of Parliament and their staff, interest groups, academics and those working in government agencies are encouraged to respond.
- Survey 1 - Review agencies. This survey asks about user experiences of making requests to the twelve government agencies the review is focused on.
- Survey 2 - General survey of OIA users. This survey asks about user experiences of making requests to government agencies not included amongst the twelve agencies focused on in survey one. It also asks about user perceptions of agencies' approaches to openness in general.
- Survey 3 - OIA experiences of current and former workers in government agencies. This survey asks about the experiences and perceptions of people currently or previously working in government agencies, both employees and contractors.
Respondents are encouraged to submit using the online surveys, however the survey is also available to download and post in hardcopy. Respondents can also make a submission on issues not covered in the survey. For more information visit the Ombudsman website.
Dame Beverley Wakem said "These surveys are designed to gather the experiences of people who have made requests, and those in government departments who have helped with responding to them. Hearing from both these groups of people will play a vital part in assessing how well the OIA is operating. This legislation is a cornerstone of New Zealand’s democracy, so it is important to ensure it is operating efficiently and effectively. I hope all those who have used the OIA to seek information from government will complete one of the surveys."
The Ombudsman's Review of OIA practices was initiated on 17 December 2014 to provide a "health check" of OIA practices and improve practices by disseminating learnings. The review has included a two-part survey of 63 agencies and 27 Ministers’ offices and closer examination of the practices of the twelve agencies.
Chief Ombudsman Dame Beverley Wakem released her report, Not a game of hide and seek, on 8 December 2015.