Here’s what we’re focusing on at the moment, and some of what we’ve done in the past. We’re a small volunteer team so we can’t do all we’d like to. If there’s something you want to draw our attention to please get in touch.
We are collaborating with the Irish Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway, supporting people affected by the Mother and Baby Homes and adoption in Ireland to exercise their information rights when seeking information about their early lives.
This project has so far delivered a comprehensive Guide and templates to help people make Subject Access Requests and FOI requests. The Guide and supporting materials are available on a dedicated section of our datasubject.ie website.
The Guide and website will be updated over time as we gain more understanding of the difficulties people are encountering in accessing their information.
The press release for the launch of the Guide is available in the Press Releases section of this site. An opinion piece entitled ‘Government continues ‘culture of secrecy’ against women hurt by Church and State’ written by James Conroy, Andrea Quinlan, and Annmarie Townsend, the LLM candidates who created the Guide and templates was published in the Irish Examiner.
We made a joint submission with Claire McGettrick and Dr Maeve O’Rourke of the Clann Project on the implementation of the GDPR in Ireland specifically as it relates to those affected by the Mother and Baby Homes and adoption.
You can read our submission here (direct link to PDF).
In August 2020 the Health Information and Quality Authority published its Recommendations on the Implementation of a National Electronic Patient Summary in Ireland and invited public submissions.
We were concerned to see that scant consideration had been given to data subject rights and data protection more broadly. We made a submission which you can read here (direct link to PDF).
We operate the datasubject.ie website which aims to provide understandable, jargon-free information about data protection rights for individuals. We’ll be constantly adding to this over time so that it becomes a valuable and valued resource for data subjects in Ireland.
We want to examine how compliant the basic data processing activities of Irish political parties are. We’d like to see whether they operate with the required levels of transparency and if they respond properly to data subjects attempting to exercise their right of access, among other things.
We may need a small number of volunteers to participate in this research – if you’d like to help then drop us an email.
We’ll be getting in touch with other organisations in Ireland and across Europe who share our commitment to fundamental rights, especially in the area of data protection to see if there are projects we can work on together.
We’ll also be contacting journalists to introduce ourselves and tell them what we do, when appropriate.
The Public Interest Law Alliance is a project of the Free Legal Advice Centres (FLAC). They publish a Bulletin every fortnight. You can read our contribution to the 18th March edition here.