I would like to request IPSA's internal telephone directory under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, showing names of staff and their job titles for ALL individual telephone extension numbers programmed onto the IPSA telephone system. Where a member of staff's name has not been assigned to an extension, please provide the function or department of that extension (e.g. general fax number) or indicate that it is unused.
I am responding to your request as the member of IPSA designated by the Lord Chancellor as the Qualified Person under s.36(5)(o)(iii) of the Freedom of Information Act. I can confirm that IPSA does hold information relevant to your request; however this information is exempt from disclosure.
As the Qualified Person I have conducted the public interest balancing exercise in relation to the engagement of the exemption at s.36(2)(c) (prejudice to the effective conduct of public affairs) of the Act, alongside consideration of the s.40(2) (personal information) exemption and our duties under the Data Protection Act, specifically paragraph 6 of Schedule 2. It is my opinion that certain forms of adverse effect would or would be likely to follow from disclosure of the information you request.
In the process of my deliberations I have consulted the other IPSA Board members and senior IPSA staff.
The internal telephone directory contains personal data of IPSA staff members and in my opinion their legitimate interests would be prejudiced by public disclosure (see s. 40). In reaching this conclusion I have taken into account the need for effective working relationships between MPs and IPSA.
I should add that disclosure of this information would also prejudice the effective conduct of public affairs in that the IPSA telephone system has been established in a way which directs calls to those best able to respond to them and avoids heavy volumes of calls being directed to particular targeted individuals.