"When a government employee uses his workplace email address to send and receive personal emails completely unrelated to his work, are those emails subject to disclosure to members of the public who request them under freedom of information legislation?" That was the question that the Divisional Court recently addressed in City of Ottawa v. Ontario.
The Court held that:
In my view, it is not reasonable for emails belonging to a private individual to be subject to access by members of the public merely because they are sent or received on a government owned email server. That is not a sensible or logical result whether as a question of fact or a question of law. The implications for the many thousands of employees who work in government offices across this country are staggering.
The National Post reports that the Ontario’s privacy commissioner is seeking leave to appeal the decision.