NATURE OF THE APPEAL: The appellant made a request to the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services (the Ministry) under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (the Act ) for access to a copy of a security audit of a maximum security detention centre operated by the Ministry. The record identified as responsive by the Ministry is a document entitled “Institution Operational Self- Audit Workbook” (OSAW). It includes a description of security measures at the facility and an assessment of their effectiveness. According to the Ministry, the OSAW is primarily designed to enable correctional facilities to compare their institutional procedures, routines and standing orders to Ministry policies and procedures and to determine their compliance with the expected norms and required standards of physical security. The audit identifies security measures in place at the detention centre, including both physical structures and equipment and procedures. It identifies deficiencies in security and includes an action plan component which addresses how identified deficiencies are to be corrected. The OSAW also includes “sign-off” sheets indicating whether certain officials are satisfied that responses in the audit workbook have been sufficiently verified and action plans developed to correct deficiencies and any areas of non-compliance with security requirements, and other information described below, some of which the Ministry has agreed to disclose to the appellant. Initially, the Ministry denied the appellant access to the entire document. It relied on the exemptions from the requirement to disclose contained in sections 13(1) (advice to government) and sections 14(1)(c) (reveal investigative techniques); 14(1)(e) (endanger life or physical safety); 14(1)(i), (j) and (k) (security); and 14(1)(l) (facilitate commission of an unlawful act). The appellant appealed this decision to the Commissioner. Mediation did not resolve any issues. A Notice of Inquiry was issued, beginning the adjudication stage of this appeal. The Ministry then issued a supplementary decision letter in which it agreed to release certain parts of the record as it had decided they do not raise security concerns. The Ministry released the “Regional Director Sign-offs”, the “Superintendent Sign-Offs”, the title page, parts of the table of contents, parts of the introductory portions of the workbook, a blank “Action Planning Form”, a blank 3-page form entitled “Strategic Facilities Plan 2002-2003 – Business Case”, and parts of nine pages of the work book dealing with topics such as posting of notice signs where closed circuit television cameras are used, disposal of confiscated alcohol, preparation of certain reports, and the supply of clothing and hygiene products to inmates. Therefore, these parts of the record are no longer in issue in this inquiry. At issue in this inquiry are the remaining pages of the OSAW, which describe the types of security tools, equipment, materials, systems and practices in place in this detention centre, their location, whether they comply with norms and standards, and completed or proposed measures to correct any non-compliance. The Ministry provided representations in response to the Notice of Inquiry, addressing why the exemptions set out above apply to the information remaining at issue. The appellant was sent a copy of the Ministry’s full representations and his response was invited. Representations were received from the appellant in response and shared with the Ministry in full. The Ministry was given an opportunity to comment on issues raised in the appellant’s representations, and the Ministry did provide reply representations on those issues. BRIEF CONCLUSION: As indicated earlier, the Ministry relies on the following exemptions from the duty to disclose records in its custody or under its control: sections 13(1) (advice to government) and 14(1)(c) (reveal investigative techniques); 14(1)(e) (endanger life or physical safety); 14(1)(i), (j) and (k) (security); and 14(1)(l) (facilitate commission of an unlawful act). I am satisfied that section 14(1)(k) (jeopardize the security of a detention centre) applies to all the information at issue. Therefore, it is unnecessary to determine which of the other exemptions apply to which parts of the record. DISCUSSION: LAW ENFORCEMENT AND RELATED EXEMPTIONS Issue A: Does the discretionary exemption at section 14(1)(k) apply to the record? General principles Section 14(1)(k) states: (1) A head may refuse to disclose a record where the disclosure could reasonably be expected to, (k) jeopardize the security of a centre for lawful detention; Except in the case of section 14(1)(e), where section 14 uses the words “could reasonably be expected to”, the institution must provide “detailed and convincing” evidence to establish a “reasonable expectation of harm”. Evidence amounting to speculation of possible harm is not sufficient [Order PO-2037, upheld on judicial review in Ontario (Attorney General) v. Goodis (May 21, 2003), Toronto Doc. 570/02 (Ont. Div. Ct.), Ontario (Workers’ Compensation Board) v. Ontario (Assistant Information and Privacy Commissioner) (1998), 41 O.R. (3d) 464 (C.A.)]. It is not sufficient for an institution to take the position that the harms under section 14 are self- evident from the record or that a continuing law enforcement matter constitutes a per se fulfillment of the requirements of the exemption [Order PO-2040; Ontario (Attorney General) v. Fineberg (1994), 19 O.R. (3d) 197 (Div. Ct.)]. The Ministry made representations that support its claim that disclosure of the remaining portions of the security audit could reasonably be expected to jeopardize the security of the detention centre. The Ministry stated that the facility in question is a maximum security detention centre where individuals are lawfully detained in custody. Maximum security institutions accommodate individuals who have committed serious offences and/or have a poor behavioural history, including inmates on remand, organized crime figures, and other high-risk inmates. These inmates present a risk to staff, other inmates, and the community. Perimeter security in maximum security institutions is well-defined, highly secure, and controlled. Inmate movement and association within the institution is strictly regulated and directly supervised. Inmates are usually accommodated in cells. Dynamic security measures and construction techniques, materials, hardware and fittings are consistent with the high level of security required to manage the inmate population safety. On an average day, the facility in question accommodates over 300 inmates. The Ministry also stated that: The OSAW contains detailed information on all aspects of operational security and procedures required in the day to day operation of a maximum security correctional facility. From physical security (such as the condition of doors, locks, windows, walls, etc.), to procedures for protecting the safety of staff, visitors and inmates. In my view, much of the information in the security audit would be obvious to most people. It is a matter of common sense and common knowledge that certain kinds of security measures, such as locks, fences and cameras would be present in certain locations and would be
NATURE OF THE APPEAL:
The appellant made a request to the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services (the Ministry) under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (the Act) for access to a copy of a security audit of a maximum security detention centre operated by the Ministry.
The record identified as responsive by the Ministry is a document entitled “Institution Operational Self-Audit Workbook” (OSAW). It includes a description of security measures at the facility and an assessment of their effectiveness.