Annual Report to Parliament 2013–2014

Access to Information Act

Table of Contents

Introduction

The Access to Information Act was proclaimed on July 1, 1983. The Act gives all individuals and corporate entities in Canada a right of access to information contained in government records, subject to certain specific and limited exceptions.

Section 72 of the Access to Information Act requires that the head of every government institution prepare, for submission to Parliament, an annual report on the administration of the Act within the institution during each fiscal year.

This report describes the administration of Status of Women Canada’s Access to Information program for the fiscal year 2013-2014.

Part I - General Information

Status of Women Canada

The mandate of Status of Women Canada is to "coordinate federal policy with respect to the status of women and administer related programs." This was set out in Order-in-Council 1976-779 and the Appropriation Act 1976-77.

The vision of Status of Women Canada (SWC) is a Canada where equality is achieved between women and men in all aspects of life.

The mission of the Agency is to exercise leadership and work in partnership to advance equality and increase women’s participation; to provide expert advice on how to take gender equality into account in developing the best policies and programs for all Canadians; and to support action and innovation that will lead to equality in communities across Canada.

The ATIP office reports to the Director General of Communications and Public Affairs. The office coordinates all activities related to the legislation within the Agency both at headquarters and in the regions.

Access to Information Activities

The Access to Information and Privacy Coordinator is responsible for all aspects of program delivery, which include:

  • processing requests under the Access to Information Act;
  • acting as spokesperson for the Agency in dealings with the Treasury Board Secretariat, the Office of the Information Commissioner, and other government departments and agencies regarding the application of the Access to Information Act as it relates to the Agency;
  • responding to consultation requests submitted by other federal institutions on Status of Women Canada documents located in their files;
  • preparing the annual report to Parliament and other statutory reports as well as other materials that may be required;
  • reviewing and approving collections in accordance with the Government Policy on Information Collection;
  • developing policies, procedures and guidelines for the orderly implementation of the Act;
  • promoting awareness of the Access to Information Act to ensure agency responsiveness to the obligations imposed; and
  • monitoring agency compliance with the Access to Information Act.

Implementation of ATI Activities and Administrative Issues

Accomplishments

The Access to Information and Privacy Office completed all carried-over and new requests during 2013-2014.

Over the last three (3) years, the ATIP office cleared all requests, commenced processing requests electronically and reviewed all internal processes, which has reduced the processing time from thirty (30) days to twenty two (22) days, as well as, the amount of paper used.

Delegation of Authority

The delegation orders were last amended in July 2013. The Coordinator/ Head of Agency and the Director General of Communications and Public Affairs have full authority while the Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) Coordinator has partial authority delegated by the Minister of Labour and Minister of Status of Women for administration and decision-making responsibilities under the two Acts. Appendix A provides a more detailed description of the delegation of authority.

Salary and Administrative Expenditures

In 2013-2014, the Access to Information and Privacy Office operated with two full-time and one part-time employee dedicated to the administration of both the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act and their related functions. Resourcing of the office is reviewed on a regular basis.

The agency’s allocation for the central coordination of the Access to Information Act amounted to $169, 484.00 ($159,144.00 were salary expenditures and $10, 340.00 were administrative costs for 2013-2014.)

Reading Room

A reading room is available at headquarters, as needed. Should a reading room be needed elsewhere, SWC’s regional offices in certain regions across Canada are available upon request.

Data Collection

The responsibility for the coordination of new data collection by the agency is assigned to the ATIP Coordinator. This ensures both compliance with the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act and the creation of new Personal Information Banks or Program Records, as necessary.

Part II - Report of the Access to Information Act

Request Under Access to Information Act

1. Statistical Report

The annual statistical report for fiscal year 2013-2014 is included at the end of this chapter.

2.Interpretation of the Statistics

Introduction

Between April 1, 2013 and March 31, 2014, Status of Women Canada carried over three (3) requests from the previous year and received sixty-five (65) new requests. In addition, the ATIP program received twelve (12) new requests for consultation from other federal institutions.

Source of Requests

Academia was the largest group of requesters, followed by the public. The following table provides a comparison with previous years.

Source of Requests

Academia was the largest group of requesters, followed by the public. The following table provides a comparison with previous years.

2011-2012 2012-2013 2013-2014
Public 69% (19) 73% (27) 14% (9)
Business 6% (1) 0% (0) 0% (0)
Media 13% (4) 11% (4) 12% (8)
Organizations 6% (1) 2% (1) 9% (6)
Academia 6% (1) 14% (5) 65% (42)
Academia was the largest group of requesters, followed by the public. The previous table provides a comparison with previous years.
Requests Completed

Sixty-eight (68) requests were completed during this fiscal year; no (0) requests were carried forward to be completed in fiscal year 2014-2015.

Request Completed
Disposition of Requests Completed
Disposition of Requests Completed
Number of Requests Percentage
Documents disclosed entirely 5 7%
Documents disclosed in part 5 7%
Nothing disclosed (excluded) 5 7%
Nothing disclosed (exempt) 5 7%
Transferred 5 7%
Unable to process 1 REF 5 7%
Request abandoned by applicant 5 7%
Request treated informally 5 7%
68 100%
Disposition of Requests Completed
Extensions
Number of Days Number of Requests
30 days or under 0
31 days or over 7

LThe time limits were extended for seven (7) requests; all seven (7) were extended due to consultations with other government institutions.

Completion Time
Completion Time
Délais d'exécution Nombre de demandes Pourcentage
30 jours au moins 59 86.8%
31 to 60 days 3 4.4%
61 to 120 days 3 4.4%
121 days or over 3 4.4%
68 100%
Délais d'exécution
Method of Access

Access to the relevant documents was given in whole or in part (12) requests. Copies were provided in eleven (11) cases and in an electronic format in one (1) case.

Fees

Net fees collected amounted to $100.00 and represent twenty (20) application fees.

Additional application fees in the amount of $10.00 have been waived.

3. Access to Information Education and Training Activities

SWC has created reference tools which are updated regularly. These tools combined with training sessions held periodically throughout the year keep staff abreast of updates to Access to Information and Privacy related information.

4. Significant Changes to the Institution

There were no significant changes to the institution during fiscal year 2013-2014.

5. Complaints

SWC did not receive any complaints during fiscal year 2013-2014.

6. Appeals to the Courts

There were no appeals to the courts between April 1, 2013 and March 31, 2014.