31 Jan 2017

Police, Corrections have most OIA complaints

8:18 pm on 31 January 2017

Police and Corrections are the two most complained about agencies when it comes to their handling of Official Information Act (OIA) requests.

Wiri Prison - Auckland Region Women's Corrections Facility

Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

New data released by the Ombudsman today shows it received 538 complaints about government departments in the second half of 2016.

Police had 75 complaints laid against them, while 49 complaints were made against Corrections.

But chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier said it was crucial the volume of requests the two agencies received was taken into account.

"Police and Corrections are an example of agencies who receive and process thousands of requests each year. So I just want to be balanced and careful in saying that what we see is a small proportion of the actual requests they have to deal with."

Meanwhile, the State Services Commission today criticised District Health Boards, saying they consistently failed to meet their obligations under the OIA, and to respond in a timely manner.