Staffing arrangements of Members of Parliament

Request

You specifically requested the following in reference to our response to your previous FOI request relating to staffing (FOI2013-A161):

“For how long did each of the:

- 18 members of staff employed by Gordon Birtwistle;

- 16 members of staff employed by Lyn Brown;

- 15 members of staff employed by Katy Clark;

- 23 members of staff employed by Stella Creasy;

- 18 members of staff employed by Thomas Docherty;

- 17 members of staff employed by George Freeman;

- 18 members of staff employed by Duncan Hames;

- 19 members of staff employed by Glenda Jackson;

- 15 members of staff employed by Charlotte Leslie;

- 16 members of staff employed by Catherine McKinnell;

- 16 members of staff employed by Claire Perry;

- 17 members of staff employed by Rachel Reeves;

- 18 members of staff employed by David Ruffley;

- 21 members of staff employed by Valerie Vaz; and

- 17 members of staff employed by Eilidh Whiteford;

work the respective MPs?”

Further to this, you requested the following in your email of 11 March 2013:

“Please can you be sure to include the names of each member of staff along with their duration please.”


Response

IPSA holds the information that you request. 

You will be aware that the MPs’ Scheme of Business Costs and Expenses (‘the Scheme’) states that ‘Staffing Expenditure may be claimed to meet the cost incurred in the provision of staff to assist with the performance of an MP's parliamentary functions.’  You may also be aware that details of annual staffing expenditure are available via our publication website

Annex A lists the start dates and end dates that we hold in relation to the members of staff for the 15 MPs requested.  This has been provided in an anonymised format, e.g. employee 1, employee 2 etc.  More than one employee entry indicates work carried out over more than one period and no leave date or a future leave date indicates that an employee is still active on our payroll.  The information set out in the Annex does not give an indication to the number of full time equivalents or, necessarily, to the number of staff actively working in any particular office.

In addition, you have requested the names of the members of staff for the 15 MPs requested.  In IPSA’s view, the information you have requested is exempt under section 40 (personal information) of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), as the names of individual members of staff who work, or who have worked, at MPs’ offices constitutes personal data.

Section 40(2) provides that personal data about third parties is exempt information if one of the conditions set out in section 40(3) is satisfied. Under the FOI Act disclosure of this information would breach the fair processing principle (Principle 1) of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA), where it would be unfair to those persons or is confidential. For further information, you may wish to visit the UK Legislation website.

Ref:
FOI2013-A195
Disclosure:
March 27, 2013
Categories:
MPs' STAFFING
Exemptions Applied:
Section 40