Scott and Department of Corrective Services
Scott and Queensland Corrective Services
(2005 F0674, 5 June 2007)
Section 42(1)(g) Endanger safety of building etc.
The applicant sought access to video recordings from the closed circuit television (CCTV) system in the Maximum Security Unit (MSU) at Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre (AGCC). On external review, Queensland Corrective Services (QCS) claimed that disclosure of these recordings could reasonably be expected to endanger the security of the MSU and therefore, they qualified for exemption under section 42(1)(g) of the Freedom of Information Act 1992 (Qld) (FOI Act). Assistant Commissioner Corby found that the recordings qualified for exemption under section 42(1)(g) of the FOI Act primarily because of the risk of an escape attempt, hostage taking incident or disturbance within the MSU posed by disclosure of the CCTV footage and consequent danger to the security of the MSU at AGCC.
Sufficiency of search – audio and video recordings – Queensland State Archives Disposal Authority - rotational recording policy
The applicant sought access to various audio intercom recordings and other video recordings. QCS were unable to locate various audio intercom and video recordings which were responsive to the applicant’s access application. QCS relied upon the rotational recording policy set out in Queensland State Archives Disposal Authority (QDAN 483) to account for these missing recordings. The applicant provided submissions and documentation in support of his argument that the relevant tapes should have been removed from the recording rotation and not taped over as a result of his FOI access application. Assistant Commissioner Corby found that the relevant tapes were not removed from the recording rotation prior to the expiry of the one month period. Accordingly, when QCS was required to identify the recordings for the purposes of this external review, they could not be located as they had been recorded over pursuant to QDAN 483.
Sufficiency of search – breaches and incidents – compliance with reporting procedures
The applicant sought access to all documents relevant to a number of breaches and incidents. The applicant contended that various QCS procedural documents indicated that additional documents should exist. Assistant Commissioner Corby found that not all the procedural documents led to the conclusion that further documents should exist. Having taken into account all the material before her, Assistant Commissioner Corby found that that there were no reasonable grounds to believe that further documents should exist. Where the procedural documents indicated that further documents should have been created, Assistant Commissioner Corby found the searches by QCS had been reasonable in all the circumstances of the case and that responsive documents did not exist in the possession or control of QCS.