EMS Disclosed Personal Information in Contravention of the Act

May 2, 2005

An individual wrote an email to the City of Calgary Emergency Medical Services (EMS) office to relay his concern that the EMS was endorsing a program of a charitable organization using a tax-funded public service. The charitable organization is an arm of an American evangelistic association.

The individual alleged that the EMS provided a copy of his email to the charitable organization in contravention of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (the “Act”).

The investigation found that the EMS did disclose personal information about the individual and that the disclosure was contrary to provisions in the Act.

The information contained in the email included the Complainant’s name and his place of employment, and his opinions about the charity program, the endorsement by Calgary EMS, Christian-focused charities in general, and the Complainant’s belief in the importance of supporting all faiths.

The recommendations included the need for training and the development of procedures to deal with this type of correspondence.  The City of Calgary accepted all of the recommendations.