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Employee Assistance Programme (2017)

Request

The number of incoming phone calls between June-2014- October 2017 to the parliament grievances helpline. I would like the number of calls made in every month of its existence up to and including October 2017. Please note this same set of data exists with a different date range published under a prior freedom information of request.

 

Response

You have asked for the number of calls made every month to Parliament’s “grievances helpline”.

We have interpreted your request to be for information about the confidential helpline for Members’ staff which is part of an Employee Assistance Programme currently run by Health Assured. This programme provides, amongst other benefits, a free 24/7 confidential helpline. The service allows staff to discuss and seek advice on personal and professional issues, including:
• Health and well-being information
• Financial issues
• General advice on employment law
• Stress at home or work and relationship matters
Additionally, face-to-face counselling sessions can be offered where appropriate.

This information is held by the House of Commons. As you noted, monthly data from the inception of the helpline service in May 2014 until March 2015 is already published on the parliamentary website. As this information is reasonably accessible to you otherwise than under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA), your request is refused. In refusing your request the House is applying the exemption set out in section 21 (1) and (2) (a) of the FOIA. This is an absolute exemption and the public interest test does not apply.