WHAT IS FOIA?
The Freedom of Information Act Program (DODR 5400.7) allows the general public including foreign citizens, military and civilian personnel acting as private citizens, to request records electronically or in writing from the Federal Government. Some records are released to the public under the Freedom of Information Act, and may therefore reflect deletion of some information in accordance with the FOIA's nine statutory exemptions or two law enforcement record exclusions. A consolidated list of such records is on Office of Freedom of Information site and the U.S. Air Force FOIA site. Currently the law allows 20 working days to process a FOIA request upon receipt of the request in the FOIA office.
WHO CAN SUBMIT A FOI REQUEST?
Members of the public, including foreign citizens, military and civilian personnel acting as private citizens, organizations and businesses, and individual members of the Congress for themselves or constituents, may request records in writing. It is important to remember that the Freedom of Information Act applies only to federal agencies. It does not create a right of access to records held by Congress, the courts, state or local government agencies, or by private businesses or individuals. Each state has its own public access laws that should by consulted for access to state and local records.
ARE YOU SEEKING A RECORD THAT IS CURRENTLY CLASSIFIED?
If you are only seeking a copy of a record or records that are currently classified, and would like the record reviewed for appropriate declassification and release, you should file a Mandatory Declassification Review request. Mandatory Declassification Review is a provision of Presidential Executive Order 13526 that allows members of the public to request a mandatory declassification review of a classified document in order to obtain a releasable version of the document. The desired document requested must be specified in sufficient detail that it can be readily located. The record in question may not be the subject of litigation. The mandatory declassification review process can be a very timely and in-depth, due to the classification of materials being reviewed by internal and outside agencies. MDR decisions can be administratively appealed to the Headquarters Air Force/AAII (Mandatory Declassification Review) or Interagency Security Classification Appeals Panel (ISCAP).
Requests for review and release of classified records under the MDR process can be made to:
Headquarters Air Force/AAII (Mandatory Declassification Review)
1000 Air Force Pentagon
Washington, DC 20330-1000
RELEASE OF EMAIL ADDRESSES
Air Force policy is to deny requests for lists of e-mail addresses (both personal and organizational) using FOIA exemption (b)(6). We rely on FOIA exemption (b)(6) when denying lists of personal e-mail addresses. High (b)(2) is no longer to be used to protect internal information, the disclosure of which would risk circumvention of a statute or agency regulation. Because DOD e-mail systems are to be used only for official and authorized purposes, the addresses are considered primarily internal. The regulations at issue that could be circumvented include DOD and AF regulations that require us to limit use of e-mail to authorized purposes, and to protect the security of your computer and information systems. Exemption (b)(6) protects information that if released would permit a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy. This does not prohibit an organization from including a single e-mail address on a Web page of in correspondence.
||HOW TO MAKE A FOIA REQUEST
To submit a FOIA inquiry online, click here. Effective March 30, 2009, the Air Force has established a new Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) website for submitting request online to our Requester Service Centers (RSC). Click on the following AF eFOIA Public Access Link (PAL): https://www.efoia.af.mil/palMain.aspx. Once there, we recommend you review all the links listed on the left side as they have been designed to provide information and guidance. Ensure you identify the physical location of the records being requested (i.e.; identify which base under the selected major command (MAJCOM) has the records you are requesting).
How do I request a copy of my Military Personnel Records or DD 214?
How do I request a copy of my Military Medical Records?
SUBMITTING PRIVACY REQUESTS
If you are seeking records on yourself, this is a Privacy Act request and you will need to provide proof of identity. At this time, all Privacy Act requests must be submitted by mailing/faxing directly to the appropriate Requester Service Center.
For information on how and what's required to submit a Privacy request click here.
NOTE: Air Force-affiliated requesters, to include military and civilian employees, should not use government equipment, supplies, stationery, postage, telephones, or official mail channels to make FOIA requests. Requests should be made through personal e-mail or postal service.
As described in DoD Regulation 5400.7-R_AFMAN 33-302, Paragraph C1.4.3. DoD FOIA Program, requestors should indicate a willingness to pay fees associated with the processing of their request or, in the alternative, why a waiver of fees may be appropriate. You will be contacted if the cost to provide the requested document(s) exceeds the amount authorized by you.
Fees are assessed depending on which group the request falls into. There are three fee categories:
Category 1: Commercial. Requesters pay all search, review, and duplication. Search and review time is chargeable at $44.00 per hour and reproduction is chargeable at fifteen cents per page.
Category 2: Educational or Noncommercial Scientific Institution or News Media or Union. The first 100 copies are free, additional copies are fifteen cents per page. No charge for search or review. News media must be able to justify that they are actively gathering news for an entity that is organized and operated to publish or broadcast news to the public, such as a publication contract.
Category 3: All Others. The first 2 hours of search and review time are free. The remaining search and review time beyond 2 hours is chargeable at $44.00 per hour. The first 100 pages of copies are free. Reproduction beyond 100 pages is chargeable at fifteen cents per page.
FOIA requesters who have questions concerning the processing of requests with the AFMC Requester Service Center should call HQ AFMC FOIA office at 937-257-8490 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are not satisfied with the response from the center, contact the FOIA Public Liaison Office at 202-404-1393 or e-mail email@example.com.