Glasgow City Council ordered to release police information

The Scottish Information Commissioner has ruled that Glasgow City Council breached the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act by refusing to release how it had decided that a youth centre boss was not involved in criminal activity and posed no danger to children.

The council was asked for the name, rank and division of a police officer who said Strathclyde Police had no concerns over the co-ordinator of Chirnsyde Community Initiative in Milton. He also asked for the date of the correspondence and the name of the council official who received the information. Details of disclosure checks, to ensure the man was fit to work with children, and administrative material about the initiative were also requested.

The council refused to reveal the information, claiming it was confidential, would prejudice possible criminal investigations, would breach data protection laws and would not be in the public interest. The Information Commissioner said the council had breached the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act, and failed to review its decision to refuse the information and to respond to requests from the Commissioner's investigation officer. The Council's claim that the information was exempt from FOI laws was rejected and it was ordered to provide all the information.

Watchdog raps city chiefs over police secrets (Evening Times, 8 September 2005)
Commissioner's full decision (Scottish Information Commissioner's website)