The Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FoI) promotes a culture of openness throughout the public sector. It gives the public a right of access to information held by public authorities such as the TDA. This legislation came into force in January 2005.
The Act gives a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public authorities, eg. e-mail, written records, etc. It sets out exemptions from that right (for more detail see the protection and disclosure of information page) and places an obligation on public authorities to provide this information when asked.
The TDA is a public body and must respond to any person who makes a request for information, making it available, subject to exemptions and sometimes at a cost, if that information is held.
The rights of individuals to see information held about themselves is not affected by FoI legislation; it remains accessible under the Data Protection Act 1998.
The TDA will preserve:
- the privacy of personal information, by processing information about members of the public and staff according to the provisions of the Data Protection Act
- the confidentiality and protection of sensitive and confidential information in certain circumstances as set out in the Code of Practice and the FoI Act.
The TDA publication scheme lists the classes of information made publicly available, which does not need to be requested individually.