Department of Justice Canada

Overall performanceFootnote 1

The Department of Justice Canada (JUS) experienced a decrease in the number of requests of 5.1% and increased the number of requests completed within 30 days by 2.4%. This report provides comparative statistics for the last three periods (2012-2015).

Workload

JUS received 520 requests under the Access to Information Act (the Act), representing 0.1% of total requests received across government in 2014-2015. The number of requests received this reporting period shows a decreased by 5.1% compared to the previous year.

The majority of requests received by JUS were from the public (40.0%), followed by the media (27.5%) and the business sector (16.5%). The number of requests from the public and the business sector increased by 10.1% and 16.2% respectively from the previous year, while requests from the media dropped by 41.6%.

JUS completed 551 requests this reporting period. The completion rateFootnote 2 was 87.0%, which is higher than the government-wide rate of 85.1%. In 2013-2014, the completion rate for JUS was 82.4%. JUS also received 148 informal requests in 2014-2015 and 139 of these were completed within 30 days. The number of consultations received by JUS from other federal government institutions decreased from 917 to 584, representing a decrease of 36.3% compared to 2013-2014. The number of consultations received by JUS was higher than the number of requests it received.

In 2014-2015, JUS processed 156,091 pages. The average number of pages processed per completed request was similar to the previous year.

The information released by JUS was mostly in paper format: 164 in paper format compared to 79 in electronic format.

Table 1: Workload

Measures 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
Number of requests received 343 548 520
Annual change (%) - 59.8% -5.1%
Completed requests 323 528 551
Annual change (%) - 63.5% 4.4%
Number of consultations received (from other government institutions) 1,339 917 584
Annual change (%) - -31.5% -36.3%
Average number of pages processed per request completed 472 498 496
% of requests for which more than 1,000 pages were processed 8.6% 7.9% 8.6%

Requests completion time

Timeliness

Figure 1 reveals that 74.4% of requests were completed in 30 days or less, which is slightly higher than the results observed in 2013-2014 and well above the government-wide average. The number of requests completed in more than 30 days was relatively similar.

Figure 1: Request Completion TimeRequest Completion Time

Text version

Figure 1 is a bar chart with vertical bars, representing the completion time by JUS during each reporting period between 2012-2013 and 2014-2015. The results are as follows:

Completion time 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
30 days or less 72.14% 71.97% 74.41%
31-60 days 6.19% 9.09% 9.07%
61-120 days 6.50% 7.01% 7.80%
121-180 days 3.72% 3.79% 3.09%
181-365 days 5.88% 4.73% 2.00%
More than 365 days 5.57% 3.41% 3.63%

Extensions

JUS took a total of 172 extensions in 2014-2015 compared to 141 in 2013-2014. The most common reason for taking an extension was interference with operations (49.4%), followed by consultations (47.7%), and third-party notice (2.9%).

Figure 2 shows that 38.4% of extensions were taken for 30 days or less, which is higher by 4.8% compared to 2013-2014. Figure 2 also reveals that the proportion of extensions taken between 31 and 60 days in 2014-2015 increased by 3.1% compared to 2013-2014. We note that the extensions taken between 121 and 180 days decreased by 11.2%.

Figure 2: Length of ExtensionsLength of Extensions

Text version

Figure 2 is a bar chart with vertical bars, representing the length of extensions taken by JUS during each reporting period between 2012-2013 and 2014-2015. The results are as follows:

Length of extensions in % 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
 30 days or less 29.63% 33.57% 38.37%
31-60 days 17.28% 17.86% 20.93%
61-120 days 12.35% 26.43% 31.40%
121-180 days 29.63% 16.43% 5.23%
181-365 days 9.88% 2.86% 3.49%
More than 365 days 1.23% 2.86% 0.58%

Deemed refusals

In 2014-2015, the number of requests closed past the statutory deadline was 42, which accounts for 7.6% of all completed request. This rate represents a “B” grade.Footnote 3 28.6% of these requests were late for 30 days or less while 40.5% were late by more than 365 days (see Figure 3). The most common reasons for not meeting statutory deadlines were workload (59.5%) and consultations (23.8%).

Figure 3: Lateness of Overdue RequestsLateness of Overdue Requests

Text version

Figure 3 is a pie chart, representing the delayed days for overdue requests taken by JUS in 2014-2015. The results are as follows:

Number of days 2014-2015
1 to 15 days 19.05%
16 to 30 days 9.52%
31 to 60 days 0.00%
61 to 120 days 21.43%
121 to 180 days 2.38%
181 to 365 days 7.14%
more than 365 days 40.48%
Total 100.0%

Disclosure

Percentage of requests for which information was disclosed

In 2014-2015, 8.7% of completed requests were all disclosed, which is lower compared to 2013-2014 (see Figure 4). Figure 4 also shows that the rate for partially disclosed requests was 35.4% in 2014-2015, which is a decrease of 8.6% from the previous period.

Figure 4: Level of DisclosureLevel of Disclosure

Text version

Figure 4 is a bar-chart with vertical bars, representing the entirely disclosed and disclosed in part requests as proportion of total requests completed by JUS during each reporting period between 2012-2013 and 2014-2015. The results are as follows:

Disclosure 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
All disclosed 12.07% 14.20% 8.71%
Disclosed in part 40.87% 43.94% 35.39%

Exemptions

The number of exemptions used per completed requests decreased slightly from 1.24 in 2013-2014 to 1.13 in 2014-2015 (see Table 2). The most used exemptions for this reporting period were section 21 (Operations of Government) (30.0%), section 19 (Personal Information) (22.4%) and section 23 (solicitor-client privilege) (18.1%) in 2014-2015.

Table 2: Exemptions

Exemptions 2012-2013 2013-2014 2014-2015
Total number of exemptions 395 655 624
Total number of completed requests 323 528 551
Average number of exemptions per request 1.22 1.24 1.13

Complaints at the OIC

The number of complaints receivedFootnote 4 against JUS decreased from 51 in 2013-2014 to 44 this reporting period. We observed a large increase in the proportion of administrative complaints compared to the previous period (11.7% in 2013-2014 and 56.8% in 2014-2015). 17 complaints were well-founded, 9 discontinued, 4 settled and 14 were pending resolution.

Footnotes

Footnote 1

Overall performance is based on two primary indicators: % of requests completed within 30 days, % of requests that were fully disclosed.

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Footnote 2

The completion rate was calculated using the number of received requests during the reporting period as well as outstanding requests from the previous period.

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Footnote 3

The 2007-2008 OIC report card grading system was used to estimate the grade A= 0 to 5%; B= 5 to 10%; C=10 to 15%, D= 15 to 20%, F=20% and more.

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Footnote 4

The numbers reported in this section are based on the OIC’s statistics. The information may not reflect the statistics reported by institutions due to the discrepancies in the methodology used.

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