Appointment of Interim Advocate

Information Standards Freedom of Information Response

Our Ref: FoI 42-20

23rd July 2020

Freedom of Information Act 2000

I am writing to confirm that the Northern Ireland Assembly Commission (Assembly Commission) does not hold the information, which you requested on 29th June 2020.  In your request you asked for the following information:

“Under FOI, I request copies of the following: Papers, briefings, minutes of the Executive Committee, TEO, Executive Leadership Team, Northern Ireland Civil Service and others, in regard to the appointment and approval of Brendan McAllister as Interim Advocate, including discussions and communication to/from/with members of parliament at Northern Ireland Assembly and UK Government.

All correspondence regarding criterium and skills which were proposed for the position of Interim Advocate and if other candidates were considered in or out of NICS.

The approach to storage, retention, and disposal of all documents collected in relation to the victims and survivors of abuse in Institutions and Child Migrants as identified in the HIAI report.

Regarding training of staff including IA around safe and secure storage and the operation of IT applications.  Including storage, if any off site in a secure and safe manner. Who or which office had/has ultimate control of documents if this is operational?

What papers, briefings, minutes in regard to Child Migrants living in Australia, correspondence with Child Migrant Trust and Tuart Place (Perth) regarding role in providing and sharing information about child migrants and their maintaining of safe storage, the retention and disposal of information shared.

What steps prior and ongoing are in place for the safe and secure operation and functioning of the Interim Advocates Office, for the purpose of maintaining a database about those wishing to be included on data base and regarding correspondence with IAO. 

What guarantee was issued from FM, DFM, SOS, Executive Committee, TEO, Executive Leadership Team, NICS, members of Assembly to victims and survivors corresponding with IAO and other entities that their privacy would always bemaintained; Including sharing of information between committees and others including details of any associated software applications in doing so.”


This information is not held by the Assembly Commission. Information regarding the Northern Ireland government is a matter for the Northern Ireland Executive. The Northern Ireland Assembly is a separate entity to the Northern Ireland Executive. Please find contact details for the NI Executive here.


You have the right to request a formal review by the Assembly Commission and if you wish to do so, please write to me at the above address. 

If after such an internal review you are still unhappy with the response, you have the right to appeal to the Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow,  Cheshire SK9 5AF who will undertake an independent review.

If you have any queries about this letter, please contact me.  Please remember to quote the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Information Standards

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