Citizenship processing timeline

Mr ED Hirsche made this Official Information request to Department of Internal Affairs

Response to this request is long overdue. By law Department of Internal Affairs should have responded by now (details and exceptions). You can complain to the Ombudsman.

From: Mr ED Hirsche

Dear Department of Internal Affairs,

I have been following your recent responses to OIAs on the citizenship processing time backlog. I have some very precise questions to which I would like your answer to. Please consider my questions precisely as written - but also please contact me if you require clarification or for me to amend my request before rejecting any part if it.

1. Previous responses indicated that you have hired temporary staff to reduce the size of the backlog of citizenship applications. How many temporary staff were/are hired? Over what time scale? Please can you provide a table of the number of temporary staff working on citizenship applications by month, for the last 12 months, including April 2022.

2. How many applications does a temporary staff member process per day? If you do not have this information, please provide me the total number of applications processed by temporary staff members per month, for the last 12 months, including April 2022.

3. Please release any analysis that was undertaken around the right number of temporary staff to hire. I imagine that you might have internal resource planning documents that explored the tension between increasing the number of temporary staff, processing times and cost.

4. Please provide me your planning assumptions about average processing time when the new system is fully operational and the backlog cleared. Note that, per previous reuqests that others have made, I am not interested in a 'normal' processing time, but an average. In particular, I would be interested in any documents where a decision was taken to return (or not) to the 3-5 month norm.

5. In previous OIA responses, you have indicated 'mid 2022' as when things will start getting better. Please be more specific. When in mid 2022? In addition, please release any internal analysis which has been undertaken to inform this statement. Note that I am not necessarily interested in the high level statements you have shared previously (e.g. as staff get more familiar with the system) but to see any documents or analysis you have done which has given you confidence that it will be better by mid 2022.

6.Pls release the number of applications received per month and the number approved per month, by month, for the last 12 months including April 2022. I wish to calculate the rate at which the backlog is being cleared. As an addition, and not a replacement, to the above, if you have an internal future forecast about the size of the backlog by month in graph or table form, pls share that too.

Yours faithfully,

ED Hirsch

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From: OIA
Department of Internal Affairs

Tçnâ koe Ed,

Thank you for your OIA request to the Department of Internal Affairs (included with this email)

The Department will provide its response to your request as soon as practicable and within twenty working days. The 20th working day is 25 May 2022

Please note that in cases where the Department’s response provides information that is identified to be of general public interest, the response may also be published on the Department of Internal Affairs website. If the Department publishes its response to your OIA request, all personal information, including your name and contact details, will be removed.

Nâku, nâ

Michelle Reed (she/her)  
Kaitohutohu Ârahi, te Ture Pârongo Ôkawa | Lead Advisor Official Correspondence 
Te Urûngi | Organisational Strategy & Performance
Level 6, 45 Pipitea St | PO Box 805, Wellington 6140, New Zealand |  www.dia.govt.nz

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From: SDO Official Correspondence
Department of Internal Affairs


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Tēnā koe Mr Hirsch,

 

Please see attached for the response to your Official Information Act 1982
request.

 

Ngā mihi,

 

Louise Walton [1](she/her)

Advisor Official Correspondence

Te Pāhekoheko, Kāwai ki te Iwi | Operations, Service Delivery and
Operations
Te Tari Taiwhenua | The Department of Internal Affairs

[2]www.dia.govt.nz

[3]Logo-test

 

References

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1. https://www.publicservice.govt.nz/our-wo...
2. http://www.dia.govt.nz/

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From: Mr ED Hirsche

Kia ora,

Can you please advise if this is your final response?

I think the use of s18f is inappropriate in this case. I assume that you have treated my questions as severable and, if you are not able to answer one, you have considered answering the other parts. Especially Q6 in my original feels like extremely standard information you would have to hand.

Are there options to refine my request so that you can provide the information?

If you are unable to help here, I will have to lodge a complaint with the Ombudsman and ask them to review this decision.

Yours sincerely,

Mr Hirsche

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From: SDO Official Correspondence
Department of Internal Affairs

Tēnā koe Mr Hirsch,

Apologies for the delay in responding to your email, and any inconvenience caused.

We have looked into this further to determine whether we are able to provide information relating to your earlier Official Information Act request, and have identified that we can provide you with the information sought in question six. The remainder of the information is still considered to require substantial collation and research, and therefore we are unable to provide it to you.

We are currently preparing this information for release, and intend to provide it within the next 10 working days.

Ngā mihi,

Louise Walton (she/her)
Advisor Official Correspondence
Te Pāhekoheko, Kāwai ki te Iwi | Operations, Service Delivery and Operations
Te Tari Taiwhenua | The Department of Internal Affairs
www.dia.govt.nz

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From: Mr ED Hirsche

Dear Louise,

Thank you for your message. Please do release the data requested in Q6: I appreciate your reconsideration of it. I note that the 10 working days noted in your email have now passed.

For the remaining questions, I am afraid that we disagree on the use of s18f. I simply don't accept that you finding the information requested in Q3, for example, would require substantial collation or research: I am simply asking you to find and release any analysis that you might have previously done, or tell me if you have not done it. That requires neither 'collation', nor 'research'.

I don't wish to complain to the Ombudsman - but I feel strongly about this and can't see any other choice.

Best - Mr Ed Hirsche.

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From: SDO Official Correspondence
Department of Internal Affairs

Tēnā koe Mr Hirsche,

Thank you for your follow up email regarding this request.

We can confirm that we still intend to provide you with the information as indicated below, however this as been delayed due to high volumes of work across our team and the wider Service Delivery and Operations.

We apologise for not advising you of this delay sooner, this was an oversight on our part. We are aiming to have the new information to you by the end of the week, but we will let you know if anything changes.

Please let us know if you have any questions about this.

Ngā mihi,

Louise Walton (she/her)
Advisor Official Correspondence
Te Pāhekoheko, Kāwai ki te Iwi | Operations, Service Delivery and Operations
Te Tari Taiwhenua | The Department of Internal Affairs
www.dia.govt.nz

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