The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 2000 came into effect on 1 January 2005. It applies to all information held by public authorities, regardless of when the information was recorded.
There are over 70,000 public authorities including Hounslow Council.
The aim of the Act is to open up the inner workings of government departments and public bodies. The general principle is that people have a right to know and should not have to demonstrate a need to know.
Specifically the Act states -
“Any person making a request for information to a public authority is entitled:
(a) to be informed in writing by the public authority whether it holds information of the description specified in the request, and
(b) if that is the case, to have that information communicated to him/ her.”
The request must be dealt with within 20 working days.
The London Borough of Hounslow is committed to openness and transparency. We will do our best to respond positively and efficiently to all requests for information.
There are some exemptions which are laid down in the Act but, as a general rule, we will provide information wherever possible.