Free information index
Colin Morris is the Independent Chair of Stockton-on-Tees Local Safeguarding Children Board.
Email address: StocktonLSCB@stockton.gcsx.gov.uk
Dear David Mortimer
Please will you kindly tell me what the (a) gender and (b) familial relationship was to the child victim of offenders in substantiated child abuse cases in the area which you have a duty to protect children from abuse for the last full year which figures are available, broken down by (i) physical abuse, (ii) emotional abuse, (iii) sexual abuse and (iv) cases of neglect.
Section 12 of the FOIA states that the Council is not obliged to comply with a request for information if it estimates that the cost of complying would exceed the appropriate cost limit which in this case is £450 as laid out in section 3(2) of the Fees Regulations. This must be calculated at the rate of £25 per hour, providing an effective time limit of 18 hours.
Regulation 4(3) of the Fees Regulations states that an authority, when estimating whether complying with a request would exceed the appropriate limit, can only take into account the costs it reasonably expects to incur in:
determining whether it holds the information;
locating the information or documents containing it;
retrieving the information, or documents containing it; and
extracting the information from any documents containing it.
In order to comply with your request, the Council would have to manually review 3583 cases to determine whether any of these cases have been through the criminal justice system. At a conservative estimate of allowing 15 minutes per case, we estimate the work would require a minimum of 895.75 hours in total, (or £22,393.75) which is well in excess of the maximum number of hours/cost.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you require any further information.