Appendix D Freedom of information

This appendix provides the information required under section 8 of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act). From 1 May 2011 agencies subject to the FOI Act are required to publish information to the public as part of the Information Publication Scheme. This requirement is in Part II of the FOI Act and has replaced the former requirement to publish a section 8 statement in an annual report. An agency plan showing what information is published in accordance with the requirements is available on the Department’s website at

Organisation, functions and decisionmaking powers

The broad functions of the Department are described in Chapter 2 of Part 1 of this report. Portfolio legislation is listed in the Administrative Arrangements Order and set out in Appendix H. The Administrative Arrangements Order is available at

Arrangements for outside participation in policy development

Bodies or persons outside the Australian Government participate in the formulation of policy by the Department or in the administration of its enactments or schemes. Those bodies include:

Categories of documents held by the Department

The following categories of documents are held by FaHCSIA:

Facilities for obtaining access to documents held by the Department

Forms and leaflets relating to FaHCSIA payments delivered by Centrelink are available from Centrelink or the Family Assistance Office.

The Department holds publicly available documents, which are available either free of charge upon request or for purchase. The Department, in accordance with the provisions of the former section 9 of the FOI Act, has lodged a statement with the National Archives of Australia listing the documents that are available from the Department. The statement is available at

This statement was replaced by the publication of operational information as part of the Information Publication Scheme. FaHCSIA’s operational information is available at Where operational information is not published on FaHCSIA’s website, inquiries should be directed to the relevant contact numbers listed for each category of operational information.

FOI access procedures and contacts

FaHCSIA handles all freedom of information (FOI) requests in accordance with the FOI Act.

Table D1 shows the number of FOI requests FaHCSIA dealt with in 2010–11.

Table D-1 Freedom of information requests, 2010–11

Requests carried over from 2009–10 Requests received in 2010–11 Requests finalised in 2010–11 (including withdrawn) Requests transferred to other agencies Requests outstanding at 30 June 2011
6 68 57 0 17

Procedures for gaining access to documents

The FOI Coordinator in FaHCSIA can be contacted about any enquiries on FOI matters.

Formal applications for access to documents under FOI must:

More information is available at

Initial contact for inquiries

Applications should be submitted to the FOI Coordinator in the national office or to an FOI contact officer in any of FaHCSIA’s state offices. Contact details are provided below.

FaHCSIA national office FOI Coordinator
Box 7576
Canberra Business Centre ACT 2610
Phone: (02) 6244 7421 or
(02) 6244 1449
Fax: (02) 6204 4497
New South Wales state office FOI Contact Officer
GPO Box 9820
Sydney NSW 2001
Phone: 1300 653 227
Fax: (02) 8255 7799
Victorian state office FOI Contact Officer
GPO Box 9820
Melbourne VIC 3001
Phone: 1300 653 227
Fax: (03) 8626 1217
Queensland state office FOI Contact Officer
GPO Box 9820
Brisbane QLD 4001
Phone: 1300 653 227
Fax: (07) 3004 4780
South Australian state office FOI Contact Officer
GPO Box 9820
Adelaide SA 5001
Phone: 1300 653 227
Fax: (08) 8400 2199
Western Australian state office FOI Contact Officer
GPO Box 9820
Perth WA 6848
Phone: 1300 653 227
Fax: (08) 9229 1566
Tasmanian state office FOI Contact Officer
GPO Box 9820
Hobart TAS 7001
Phone: 1300 653 227
Fax: (03) 6211 9304
Northern Territory state office FOI Contact Officer
GPO Box 9820
Darwin NT 0801
Phone: 1300 653 227
Fax: (02) 6204 5858