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More About the Publication Scheme

Section 19 of the Freedom of Information Act places a duty on public authorities to adopt and maintain a publication scheme. Prior to the 1st January 2009 each police force was responsible for the design of their publication scheme.

Following consultation between National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) and the Information Commissioner's Office a model publication scheme was developed for all police forces and police authorities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

This model publication scheme details the classes and types of information that each of those police forces should be making available to the public on a regular basis.

The classes of information and a brief overview of the information contained in each of them can be found by clicking on the Information Classes link on the right.

We are committed to delivering an open and transparent service whenever possible and it is our intention to publish information in our publication scheme that the public may have an interest in viewing. However, as we are committed to protecting the communities we serve, preventing and detecting crime, it must be recognised that certain information, in the public interest should not be disclosed.

Information concerning ongoing investigations, investigative methods, intelligence and the use of related operational techniques must be protected. They are central to the maintenance of a safe and just society.

In this respect, Staffordshire Police will, when appropriate, apply reasonable consideration of any or all of the exemptions afforded under the Act; particularly section 30 (investigations and proceedings conducted by public authorities), section 31 (law enforcement) and section 41 (information provided in confidence).

Police investigations are conducted with due regard to the confidentiality and privacy of victims, witnesses and suspects. Such investigations may also frequently involve the use of policing tactics or techniques that, if widely known, would hinder the ability of the police service to prevent and detect crime. It is further recognised that the release of information concerning current investigations may compromise any subsequent court proceedings.

For these reasons the police service will, in most cases, seek to apply an exemption to prevent the release of information concerning investigations when requested under the Act.

Whilst adopting this general position, there is full recognition that in some cases there will be significant and compelling issues of public interest that require the disclosure of information. However, to override issues of personal privacy and possible harm to individuals involved in the investigation, this public interest must be significantly more than mere curiosity or interest in a particular investigation.

In order to ensure that these public interest issues are fully considered, all applications for information concerning investigations will be considered on a case-by-case basis in accordance with the requirements of the Act.

The person responsible for maintaining the publication scheme for Staffordshire Police is our Deputy Chief Constable.

The Force's Freedom of Information Officer, holds responsibility for reviewing the Publication Scheme, with the Web Development Office responsible for maintaining the scheme.

The aim of the publication scheme is to set out:

  • What information Staffordshire Police publishes or intends to publish as a matter of course.
  • How we will publish this information.
  • Whether the information will be available free of charge or on payment.