Non-disclosure agreements (FOI)
Non-disclosure agreements (FOI)Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by Government of Jersey and published on 01 October 2020.
Prepared internally, no external costs.
Are politicians required to sign NDAs'?
i. Under what circumstances?
ii. On whose authority?
How many NDAs' have been signed in the past 12 months?
There is no procedural obligation on States Members to sign non-disclosure agreements or compromise agreements in order to carry out their duties.
The rules governing the work of States Members nevertheless include some provisions for how they are expected to deal with confidential information.
Under Standing Order 155, States Members are obliged to comply with the Code of Conduct set out in
Schedule 3 to the Standing Orders of the States of Jersey.
The purpose of the code of conduct is to assist elected members in the discharge of their obligations to the States, their constituents and the public of Jersey. Paragraph 8 of the Code of Conduct deals with access to confidential information and reads as follows:
“Elected members must bear in mind that confidential information which they receive in the course of their duties should only be used in connection with those duties, and that such information must never be used for the purpose of financial gain nor should it be used in their own personal interest or that of their families or friends. In addition, members should not disclose publicly, or to any third party, personal information about named individuals which they receive in the course of their duties unless it is clearly in the wider public interest to do so. Elected members must at all times have regard to all relevant data protection, human rights and privacy legislation when dealing with confidential information and be aware of the consequences of breaching confidentiality. Elected members must not disclose publicly, or to any third party, things said, or information produced, in a meeting of the States that is conducted in camera, unless the States have permitted such disclosure.”
In terms of the information provided to Panels and the PAC, Paragraph 24 of the Code of Practice states:
“Where information provided will include items of a confidential nature and relevant exempt Ministerial decisions, confidentiality will be respected by all Members involved in Scrutiny/PAC.”
Section H of the Code of Practice deals explicitly with personal of confidential information; Paragraph 42 from this Section states that “information which contains personal data or relates to a third party will not be made public if doing so could contravene relevant data protection legislation.”