IPS Agency Plan

This Information Publication Scheme Plan is for the purpose of the Information Publication Scheme (IPS) required by the Freedom of Information Act 1982.

Establishing and administering the agency’s IPS entry

Sabina Wynn, Executive Director, is responsible for leading the Commission’s work on implementing FOI reforms, including establishing and administering the IPS.

IPS information architecture

The initial point of entry for public access to ALRC information is the ALRC home page (www.alrc.gov.au). Links are provided in the home page footer to pages on FOI and Privacy.

We currently publish a wide range of information on our website, including all of the categories of information required under the IPS. The IPS web page provides access via links to specific information required to be published.

Information required to be published under the IPS

Under section 8 of the FOI Act, from 1 May 2011 all Commonwealth agencies are required to provide access to certain defined information. As part of assessing what information should be made available, the ALRC will have regard to the objects of the FOI Act, and guidelines issued by the Australian Information Commissioner.

The ALRC will publish:

  • a plan for implementing the IPS
  • details of the structure of the organisation
  • details of our functions, including decision-making powers and other powers affecting members of the public
  • details of statutory appointments
  • our annual reports and our quarterly statistical reports
  • details of arrangements for members of the public to comment, where appropriate, including how (and to whom) those comments may be made
  • information which the ALRC routinely or regularly releases in response to FOI requests
  • information which the ALRC routinely provides to the Australian Parliament in response to requests and orders
  • details of officers who can be contacted about access to information or documents under the FOI Act, and
  • our operational information as it extends to our exercising functions and powers in making decisions or recommendations which affect members of the public—for example, any rules, guidelines, practices or precedents relating to those decisions or recommendations.

To ensure that the IPS information holdings (and individual IPS documents) are easily discoverable, understandable and machine-readable, the ALRC:

  • includes a link to the FOI entry point on its website home page
  • provides online content in a format that can be searched, copied and transformed
  • publishes a site map for its website, to help individuals identify the location of information published under ss.8(2) and 8(4)
  • provides a search function for its website

Under section 11C of the FOI Act, the ALRC is required to publish a Disclosure Log of information contained in documents which it has released under the Act, subject to limitations to protect personal and business information or other information that the Australian Information Commissioner may determine is unreasonable to publish. The ALRC will publish on its website, within 10 working days of the release of information, details of the nature of the information provided and of how copies of the documents released may be obtained.

Other information to be published under the IPS

The ALRC will publish other information which members of the public find useful. The ALRC may publish additional material related to the following criteria:

  • information key stakeholders and the community expect to know
  • information that may be important and relevant to the community
  • publications which would promote greater agency accountability.

IPS compliance review

The ALRC will review this plan annually and update it each year. We will ensure that online information is regularly reviewed for currency and accuracy. Outdated information will be replaced or archived.

We will review the operation of our IPS entry and compliance with statutory requirements from time-to-time and at least every five years, using self-assessment tools issued by the Information Commissioner or in reviews in conjunction with the Information Commissioner.

The success of the IPS will be gauged by public feedback (including email and feedback channelled through the website). Trends in FOI access requests will also be taken into account.