Purpose of Freedom of Information (FOI)

Under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 , (“the FOI Act”) members of the public can seek access to documents held by the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR), within the Department of Health (the Department).

Making a Freedom of Information (FOI) request

Requests to access documents from the OGTR must:
  • be made in writing;
  • state that the request is an application for the purposes of the FOI Act;
  • provide enough information to clearly identify the documents sought.

    FOI requests should be sent to:
    By post:
    Freedom of Information Coordinator
    FOI Unit
    Office of the Gene Technology Regulator
    MDP 54 - GPO Box 9848
    CANBERRA ACT 2601 
    Or
     requests may also be lodged by e-mail: ogtr@health.gov.au

    Charges

    There is no fee for making an FOI request.  The FOI Act provides that charges may be imposed for processing requests (except where you are seeking documents containing your own personal information).  Should your FOI request incur any charges, you will be provided with an estimate of the applicable charges.  Your request will not proceed until a response to the estimate is received by the OGTR.

    OGTR may decide to remit, reduce or not impose processing charges under certain circumstances. 

    Third party consultation

    If documents we identify relate to an individual/organisation (other than an applicant) it may be necessary for us to consult with that individual/organisation in order to obtain their views about the potential release of documents.

    Freedom of Information Disclosure Logs

    FOI Disclosure Log Logo
    The FOI Act requires agencies to disclose access decisions through a disclosure log on its website. The disclosure log provides access to information which has been released in response to an FOI request.
    The disclosure log requirement does not apply to:
  • personal information about any person if publication of that information would be ‘unreasonable’
  • information about the business, commercial, financial or professional affairs of any person if publication of that information would be ‘unreasonable’
  • other information covered by a determination made by the Australian Information Commissioner if publication of that information would be ‘unreasonable’
  • any information if it is not reasonably practicable to publish the information because of the extent of modifications that would need to be made to delete the information listed in the above dot points.
    The information that is described in this disclosure log is information that has been released by OGTR under the FOI Act 1982 and is available for public access.

    Information Publication Scheme (IPS)

    IPS logo
    The 2010-11 reforms to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) have established the OAIC Information Publication Scheme (IPS) for relevant Australian Government agencies.

    The IPS requires agencies to publish a broad range of information on their websites, and to make it available for downloading where possible.  The IPS enhances the amount of government information that is available to the public and underpins a pro-disclosure culture across government.  As part of this, agencies are also required to publish an Agency Plan to explain how they intend to implement the IPS.

    Contacts and further information

    If you would like further information about making a Freedom of Information request, please contact the FOI Unit on +61 2 6289 1385 or by email:ogtr@health.gov.au

    The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) website provides useful information about the FOI process, publications and resources.