Department of Human Services

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FOI Information Statement

The Freedom of Information Act 1991 (FOI Act) provides members of the public with a legally enforceable right of access to information held by South Australian Government agencies, subject to certain restrictions (or exemptions) that are set out within the legislation.

The following information statement for the Department of Human Services is published in line with Section 9 of the FOI Act.

Structure and functions of the Department of Human Services (DHS)

The functions of the department are based on a broad mandate to assist members of the community who, through circumstance, may be vulnerable, at risk of harm, or isolated, and to connect them with choices and opportunities within South Australia.

The department works closely with people across South Australia to build communities where people are involved and they feel connected, safe and supported — consistent with its vision: Fairness, opportunity and choice for all South Australians.

The department's services are provided from locations around the State.

Further information about the department

  • the Annual Report provides further comprehensive information on the department's functions and performance
  • the Strategic Plan outlines key priorities and strategies for the department's work
  • the organisational chart provides information on the department's business units and offices.

DHS functions affecting the public

The work of the department includes a range of services designed to make a tangible and positive difference to the wellbeing of all members of the community.

Our work areas broadly involve these topics:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
  • community support and services for older people
  • community partnerships
  • disability support
  • family support
  • volunteers
  • women
  • youth.

Public participation in agency policy development and the exercise of the agency's functions

The department regularly seeks external expertise and community opinion when developing policy, including from statutory and non-statutory advisory committees. To connect with the community, we may consult in the planning, development and implementation of policy.

The department:

  • consults with major interest groups and service providers
  • circulates discussion papers
  • calls for submissions on particular topics, and
  • convenes public meetings on legislative reform and policy initiatives.

The department also uses volunteers in a range of capacities and functions to help provide services to the community.

Types of documents held by DHS

The department holds a wide variety of documents that fall broadly into these categories:

  • corporate files containing correspondence, memoranda, minutes etc on the department's operations
  • accounting and financial reports on the department's business activities
  • client records (for example, case notes)
  • personnel files relating to departmental employees
  • internal policies, procedures, and guidelines prescribing how various programs, activities and functions are to be performed
  • general administrative instructions and industrial circulars
  • general publications including:
    • annual reports
    • assessments and proposals
    • books
    • directories
    • discussion and background papers
    • evaluations
    • greetings and common phrases
    • reports
    • reviews
    • serial publications
    • pamphlets
    • posters
    • surveys
    • strategies.

Documents available free of charge

Generally, the department's publications are available without charge. You can access many departmental document online. You can also request documents. Email DHS Enquiries.

Documents available free of charge include the following:

  • pamphlets
  • posters
  • application forms for services
  • strategic plans
  • fact sheets
  • annual reports
  • media releases
  • newsletters
  • community consultation/discussion papers.

Departmental policy documents

The department maintains a substantial number of internal policy and procedure documents. These include policies and procedures relating to:

  • carers and volunteers
  • operational programs and service delivery (for example, housing and disability services)
  • financial management
  • risk management
  • governance
  • human resources
  • information communication technology
  • workforce health, safety and welfare
  • procurement
  • records management.

View a list of policies

If you wish to access internal policy documents, email DHS Enquiries or contact the Senior FOI Officer.

Making an FOI application

Visit our Freedom of Information page for details on submitting an application.

For any FOI enquiries, please contact the Senior FOI Officer.

Phone 8413 9094

Page last updated : 03 Mar 2022

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