1. Delayed or cancelled operations
The Deadline News Agency in Scotland reports on an FOI request by Jackie Baillie, the shadow health minister north of the Border, which lifted the lift on the number of operations being called off each week in the country.
2. Spending on prison lessons
Levels of spending on lessons for prisoners are falling in Wales – so says the Western Mail, using figures released under FOI. The amount spent on classes has fallen 7%.
3. Lives lost needlessly at hospital
The Swindon Advertiser used FOI legislation to ask how many Serious or Untoward Incidents were reported at the local hospital over the last 16 months. The findings revealed that there were 35 such cases, nine of which resulted in the death of patients.
Car accidents involving the police
In the Midlands, according to the Sunday Mercury, police cars were involved in more than 6,000 accidents in two years. Police took responsibility for a third of them – and the amount paid out in compensation was £1million. A simple FOI but very effective.
The price of water
Councils often use these sorts of FOIs to demonstrate how journalists abuse FOI, but at a time when councils are making cuts to services, should they really be spending £1,000 a year on bottled water for officers and councillors at meetings? Thanks to the Uxbridge Gazette, that’s something the voters can now make their minds up about.
Injuries inflicted upon police officers
The Edinburgh Evening News revealed this week that two dozen police officers in the city had received bite injuries – half from humans – after asking for the injuries sustained by officers on duty:
The bite attacks were revealed as part of a list released under freedom of information laws of 644 injuries suffered by officers and special constables.
Another 103 employees from the force’s 1,400-strong civilian staff were also injured since the start of last year while at work.
One force employee even suffered an electric shock last October in a police office.
A total of 17 fractures and eight dislocations were recorded, and one officer was injured on duty by a needle. Police officers are able to make a civil claim for compensation against anyone who is responsible for them being injured while on duty.