New Aug 21 dates! Free FOI Training – book now

Using your FOI rights!

thumbnail of Free FOI Training Flyer FINAL

19 July Update: Five new sessions in August are now available to book. Please share. For date and time details and booking via Eventbrite, please see the CFoIS website. (There are 3 Intro to FOI and 2 Digging Deeper sessions. Info on what is covered is below.)

27 April Update. All sessions below are fully booked, with waiting lists. We are likely to organise a small number of further sessions and will update here and let branches know in due course.

Do you think making a Freedom of Information (FOI) request sounds useful for your union work, but you’re not quite sure how best to do it?

It is simple and straightforward for anyone to use their information rights and make a request, but help is at hand for members who would find expert advice useful.

UNISON Scotland members can book a free 2-hour online training session in May to help you feel confident in using FOI and other legislation to find out key facts, figures and other information.

29 MARCH UPDATE! New dates in June! New dates just announced due to demand!

Free training for UNISON members and organising staff. (Details of these online sessions are as below re the May dates, which are all now fully booked. Those on the waiting list have been emailed.)

Introduction to FOI:

Tues 1st June 10am-12noon.   Mon 7th June 1pm-3pm.    Wed 16th June 2pm-4pm

FOI – Digging Deeper:

Thurs 10th June 6pm-8pm.  Mon 14th June 11am-1pm

Register at Eventbrite via CFoIS website:

For further information contact

For your union work and related campaigns, you might want to ask for information, for example, about PPE, about cleaning rotas, about PPP/PFI contracts, about spending on health and safety, about health and social care staffing, about climate emergency work, or whatever is useful to you.

(If you need to ask public bodies for information more urgently, use this excellent briefing from the Campaign for Freedom of Information in Scotland. CFoIS.)

The free training, provided by CFoIS, is open to all members and to UNISON organising staff. It will explain FOI and related law (see flyer above for more detail) and:

  • What information you are entitled to – and from whom
  • How to make an effective request
  • Key pitfalls and how to avoid them
  • What authorities should do to help you
  • When requests can be refused on cost grounds
  • How various legal exemptions and the public interest test work
  • Challenging refusals
  • The impact of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and human rights law on policy, duties and rights

The course will provide you with information to take away including:

  • Case Studies
  • Top Tips and Information Checklist

A more in depth Digging Deeper version of the course is an option for those with more experience of making requests. If dates for either below are not suitable, please register your interest for a likely future block of dates.

Course dates

Introduction to FOI: Wed 5 May 10am-12noon; Sat 8 May 10am-12noon;

Wed 19 May 6pm-8pm; Fri 21 May 1pm-3pm.

FOI – Digging Deeper: Thurs 20 May 2pm-4pm.

Venue: Teams (Accessible via hyperlink. Teams account not necessary.)


Book your free place now

Register at Eventbrite via CFoIS website:

For further information contact