§ Mr.Chris Smith
asked the Secretary of State for Employment what arrangements are made to allow individuals claiming unemployment benefit to have access to information held about themselves on which their entitlements are assessed; what guidance he has issued on this matter; whether he proposes to allow greater access to such information held on automated and non-automated records; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr.Alan Clark
Information needed to assess a claim for unemployment benefit is always freely available to the individual concerned or to someone authorised by him to receive it. My Department's standing instructions encourage a ready access to such information for individual claimants. The Data Protection Bill will, of course, create a general entitlement to access by individuals to automated personal records held on them when it comes into operation.