Gateshead Council holds some information that we cannot make available to the public, either as part of our Publication Scheme or in response to a specific request, because it is absolutely protected by law.
We have been guided by the exemptions listed in the Freedom of Information Act 2000 when deciding what information we will not make public.
Some information has qualified protection and we always consider the public interest before deciding whether to publish or withhold this information.
Where exemptions from publication relate only to a specific class or are additional to these general exemptions, this is made clear under that class as listed in the Publication Scheme.
We will not generally make the following information available:
- Information in response to an access request that is already included in the Publication Scheme or is available elsewhere;
- Personal information about you, because you can access this under the Data Protection Act 1998;
- Personal information about individual residents, customers, employees or council members that is covered by the Data Protection Act 1998, because of our duty of confidentiality. We will, however, provide contact information about council members and employees where appropriate;
- Information which, if disclosed, would endanger the physical or mental health, or safety of any person;
- Information that we are prohibited from publishing by any law or court order, or which would constitute a contempt of court if made public;
- Information provided to us in confidence that is genuinely confidential in nature or where disclosure could result in us being sued;
- Information which is covered by a claim to legal professional privilege;
- Information which, if disclosed, would prejudice the commercial interests of the Council or another person or organisation;
- Information which, if disclosed, would adversely affect the effective running of the Council, like confidential briefings, details of on-going negotiations, and draft plans, policies and reports unless they are issued for consultation before being finalised;
- Information related to law enforcement including the prevention and detection of crime and the prevention and detection of fraud;
- Investigations being carried out by the Council that might lead to criminal or civil proceedings;
- Documents served on the Council by the Courts, Inquiries or Arbitration and any documents relating to these proceedings;
- Internal policies, procedures, employee guidance and information unless we feel that it is in the public interest to disclose them;
- Minutes or informal notes of internal and closed meetings unless we feel that it is in the public interest to disclose them;
- Information held with a view to future publication like research documents or draft reports to Council or Cabinet;
- Information related to national security and defence of the British Isles;
- Information that would prejudice the economic interests of the UK or any part of it;
- Auditing of the accounts of another public body;
- Environmental information made available under current or future regulations implementing international obligations on access;
- Trade secrets and information that would prejudice our commercial interests or those of another person or organisation.