Powys Council reported over asbestos details refusal

Published date: 02 February 2013 |
Published by: Richard Jones
Read more articles by Richard Jones


Powys Council refuse to give details about asbestos in schools 

POWYS County Council has been reported to the Information Commissioner for refusing to release details of schools in its area where asbestos is present – unlike all other Welsh local authorities.

Plaid Cymru has asked the Information Commissioner to investigate after the authority refused for a second time to release the details under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004.

The Party of Wales challenged the initial grounds for the refusal, highlighting that other authorities have been willing to provide the information requested.

Simon Thomas, Mid and West Wales AM and Plaid’s Shadow Minister for Education, said: “I’m very disappointed at the continued stance taken by Powys County Council. Unlike every other local authority in Wales, Powys has failed to provide the information sought.

“Local authorities need to operate in an open and transparent manner, particularly because this is an issue of concern to parents, guardians and teachers. Sadly, Powys has failed to do so and I hope the Information Commissioner’s Office will ensure that Powys releases this information.”

Mr Thomas has supported the ‘Right to Know: Asbestos in Schools Wales’ campaign to ensure a voluntary online schools asbestos database for Wales.
He will attend the first meeting of the cross party group on asbestos which will take place next Tuesday at the National Assembly.

In its refusal the council has used a section of the Environmental Information Regulations as a reason to refuse to disclose the information – namely on international relations, defence, national security or public safety grounds.

 

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