How quickly can a freedom of information request be answered? Very quickly, when the answer is a no. While many in the Northern Territory government have claimed that information and footage in Monday’s Four Corners report on the treatment of youths in the NT’s Don Dale juvenile detention centre was new to them, other reports have stated that ministers were told about practices. Crikey lodged an FoI request with the Department of Correctional Services yesterday regarding ministerial briefs from August 2014 until now “related to the use of tear gas, or spit hoods at the Don Dale juvenile detention facility”. Today, sadly, our FoI was rejected, as the act exempts disclosure of information that could come before a royal commission.

Peter Fray

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