Freedom of information -To Apply To Registered Social Landlords From November 2019

The Scottish Government has announced that freedom of information laws (FOI) will apply to registered social landlords from 11 November 2019.

FOI laws will give you rights to receive more information about how we operate and our functions as a registered social landlord by making a request to us.  We must respond to you within 20 working days of receiving your request and, unless the information is exempt, we must disclose it to you.  We may charge you a fee for providing you with this information.  If you are not happy with how we deal with your request, you can ask us to review how we have handled it.  If you are still not happy, you can apply to the Scottish Information Commissioner and the Commissioner may investigate further.

FOI will only apply to information about the housing services that we provide to you and certain information about our financial wellbeing and standards of governance, which we supply to the Scottish Housing Regulator.  It will not extend to information about our factored properties.

In the meantime, our Data Protection Officer, Daradjeet Jagpal, will also assume the role of our Information Officer for FOI purposes and will work with us to ensure we are FOI ready come November.  As part of this, Daradjeet will be involved in helping us:

  • Catalogue the information we hold to ensure we can handle and respond to FOI requests within the required timescales.
  • Prepare our publication scheme and guide to information, which sets out the information we publish and how it can be accessed.  This could often mean you could access the information you are looking for more quickly and without having to make an FOI request to us e.g. via our website or by visiting the office.
  • Put in place the necessary FOI policy and procedure to ensure we comply and process requests in line with the law.
  • Deliver training so staff know how to recognise an FOI request and how it should be handled.

We will provide you with more information about FOI in future newsletters, including how to make a request and the details you must include within your request before we can process it.