Personal Information Must Still Be Respected in FOI Case, Commissioner Rules

The Canadian Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta (OIPC Alberta) has released Order F2009-048: Calgary Board of Education (1 December 2011), concluding that the Calgary Board of Education breached the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIP) when it disclosed information about a former employee, who was giving evidence as a witness in a Board of Reference hearing involving another employee. The Board of Reference sought to compel the disclosure of information about the former employee that was unrelated to the proceeding in order to determine whether it should be adduced as evidence. Adjudicator Amanda Swanek held that “the use and initial disclosure of the information by the Public Body was not authorized under FOIP … [but t]he subsequent disclosure of the information for the purpose of complying with the order of the Board was authorized… [and] the Public Body did not fail in its duty to make reasonable security arrangements to protect the individual’s personal information”.
OIPC Alberta’s media release (8 December 2011)
(Source: OIPC Alberta; Alberta Queen’s Printer)