Academy petition

 We would like to apologise if you have been upset by the Football Club contacting you using your signature on the petition in support of requesting the Club to apply for Category 1 Academy status that the Trust collected.

  Generally for a petition to be accepted as valid by an organisation a petition should contain the name, address (email address accepted in lieu of home address) and signature of any person supporting the petition. Many public bodies such as local councils specifically state that this is a requirement before they will accept a petition. Ipswich Borough Council for example states this as part of its petition policy, which can be reviewed on their website.
  The petition was passed to the Club as collected and we do not believe that it is unreasonable for the Trust to have submitted the petition to the Club in that form to ensure the petition could be considered valid, nor that it is a breach of the rules of the Information Commissioner because the details were only being used in pursuit of the purpose for which they were being collected.
  However, we could have made this clearer to petitioners by having an express statement on the petition form in the first place that these details would be passed to the Club in this format.
  Should the Club solicit support for the Academy or contact those people who supported the proposition that the Club attain Category 1 status for the Academy?
  This may be questionable but the ICO has previously stated that it may not be unreasonable for an organisation to respond to participants in a petition provided that it may not be construed as overt marketing. Whether soliciting supporting for an Academy organisation is to be considered overt marketing is open to interpretation.
  We are writing to the Club giving these views to them.


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