Connecticut Department of Children and Families Eckerd Rapid Safety Feedback

Algorithmic Transparency filed this request with the Department of Children and Families of Connecticut.
Due Sept. 22, 2016
Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Response

Communications

From: Michael Morisy

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Connecticut Freedom of Information Act ("FOIA"), I hereby request the following records:

This request is concerning the the software and algorithm used in the Eckerd Rapid Safety Feedback Software. For reference and help retrieving responsive documents, this program was publicly discussed in the following news article:

http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-dcf-child-deaths-0203-20150202-story.html

I am requesting the following records related to the above program:

* Any software and algorithms developed for the implementation of the program. I'm particularly interested in any algorithms that have a public policy outcome, such as providing guidance on a policy or an assessment of an individual. More generally, I would like any software that was developed by or with, given to, used by, purchased or licensed to this agency for implementation of the above referenced program. This would include original source code, any compiled binaries (also known as executables), spreadsheets, program scripts, and other digital materials used to calculate any data in the above program. It would also include the input training data for machine learning algorithms. Collectively, these responsive materials will be referred to as "the software" in the following paragraphs.

* All instructional materials, presentations and presentation materials (including recorded video and audio, PowerPoint files, prepared remarks, and slides formats), and other guidance on the use of "the software." This includes any notes taking during meetings that discussed the use of the software, any explanations (whether internally or externally generated) of how the software works, and any other document that has been used to help explain the use of "the software" to any party, including internal documentation, public relations materials, and executive summaries. This also includes any description of input and output data fields that will aid in understanding the type of information that is submitted to the software, and that is produced by the software.

* A copy of any privacy impact assessments, use policies, standard operating procedures, data retention policies, legal opinions, warranties, non-disclosure agreements, contracts, liability waivers, insurance agreements, Requests for Proposals, Responses to Requests for Proposal, Memorandums of Understanding, Letters of Interest, usage policies, or informal agreements that reference "the software" or otherwise guide it use or the relationship between this agency and the provider or developer of the software.

* A copy of any funding opportunity announcements, grant applications and grantor status/progress reports, reports to legislative bodies, annual reports that mention the use of the Software, as well as audit records, including but not limited to security audits of the software, misuse reports, and reports to oversight bodies.
* A copy of any validation studies conducted with respect to the program or with respect to any software or algorithms used in connection with the program, and a copy of any records pertaining to inquiries for the need of validation studies, or discussion of potential or actual validation studies. By “validation study,” I mean any study designed to assess how accurate the program is in predicting what it is supposed to predict, or to assess whether the program may err in the direction of either under- or overestimating likelihoods or predicted outcomes, or may produce any results that are biased or unexpected in any way.

* For the aspects of the software that require an input, for example, to compute a value, we request a copy of the five most recent sets of data that were used for input, as well as the five most recent outputs of the software, in whatever their native format is. If these inputs or outputs include exempt information, we ask that you exempt only that information which is specifically exempted from law, and provide the other material.

The requested records will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 4 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Michael Morisy

From: DEMATTEO, TOM

Dear Michael Morisy:

The Connecticut Department of Children and Families is in receipt of the email pasted below requesting certain records in connection with the Eckerd Rapid Safety Feedback. I have forwarded your request to those DCF staff who are familiar with this effort. They are currently researching your request to ascertain what records DCF has in its possession that are responsive. Once the records are collected they will be reviewed to determine which are disclosable under the FOIA. I cannot give you a specific date for compliance but can assure you that we are actively working on your request. Please direct all future correspondence to me. Thank you.

Thomas De Matteo
Assistant Agency Legal Director
Department of Children and Families
505 Hudson Street
Hartford, CT 06106
Telephone: 860-550-6306
Fax: 860-560-7086

September 16, 2016
Department of Children and Families
Commissioner's Office
Department of Children and Families
505 Hudson Street
Hartford, CT 06106

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Connecticut Freedom of Information Act ("FOIA"), I hereby request the following records:

This request is concerning the the software and algorithm used in the Eckerd Rapid Safety Feedback Software. For reference and help retrieving responsive documents, this program was publicly discussed in the following news article:

http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-dcf-child-deaths-0203-20150202-story.html

I am requesting the following records related to the above program:

* Any software and algorithms developed for the implementation of the program. I'm particularly interested in any algorithms that have a public policy outcome, such as providing guidance on a policy or an assessment of an individual. More generally, I would like any software that was developed by or with, given to, used by, purchased or licensed to this agency for implementation of the above referenced program. This would include original source code, any compiled binaries (also known as executables), spreadsheets, program scripts, and other digital materials used to calculate any data in the above program. It would also include the input training data for machine learning algorithms. Collectively, these responsive materials will be referred to as "the software" in the following paragraphs.

* All instructional materials, presentations and presentation materials (including recorded video and audio, PowerPoint files, prepared remarks, and slides formats), and other guidance on the use of "the software." This includes any notes taking during meetings that discussed the use of the software, any explanations (whether internally or externally generated) of how the software works, and any other document that has been used to help explain the use of "the software" to any party, including internal documentation, public relations materials, and executive summaries. This also includes any description of input and output data fields that will aid in understanding the type of information that is submitted to the software, and that is produced by the software.

* A copy of any privacy impact assessments, use policies, standard operating procedures, data retention policies, legal opinions, warranties, non-disclosure agreements, contracts, liability waivers, insurance agreements, Requests for Proposals, Responses to Requests for Proposal, Memorandums of Understanding, Letters of Interest, usage policies, or informal agreements that reference "the software" or otherwise guide it use or the relationship between this agency and the provider or developer of the software.

* A copy of any funding opportunity announcements, grant applications and grantor status/progress reports, reports to legislative bodies, annual reports that mention the use of the Software, as well as audit records, including but not limited to security audits of the software, misuse reports, and reports to oversight bodies.
* A copy of any validation studies conducted with respect to the program or with respect to any software or algorithms used in connection with the program, and a copy of any records pertaining to inquiries for the need of validation studies, or discussion of potential or actual validation studies. By "validation study," I mean any study designed to assess how accurate the program is in predicting what it is supposed to predict, or to assess whether the program may err in the direction of either under- or overestimating likelihoods or predicted outcomes, or may produce any results that are biased or unexpected in any way.

* For the aspects of the software that require an input, for example, to compute a value, we request a copy of the five most recent sets of data that were used for input, as well as the five most recent outputs of the software, in whatever their native format is. If these inputs or outputs include exempt information, we ask that you exempt only that information which is specifically exempted from law, and provide the other material.

The requested records will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 4 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Michael Morisy

From: DEMATTEO, TOM

Dear Mr. Morisy: DCF is still in the process of gathering the information referred to in your request. I expect to have it shortly at which time I will review it and send you what is required to be disclosed under the FOIA.

From: DEMATTEO, TOM

Dear Mr. Morisy:

We have recently completed collecting the information in DCF’s possession that you have requested. I intend to begin reviewing it very soon and will forward you the material as I finish my review. I hope to begin this coming week.

Thomas DeMatteo

Connecticut Department of Children and Families

505 Hudson Street

Hartford, CT 06106

Phone: 860-550-6306

Fax: 860-560-7086

From: Department of Children and Families

A first set of responsive documents from the agency, with more to be sent at a specified date.

From: DEMATTEO, TOM

Dear Mr. Morisy:

In partial response to your freedom of information request attached please find the following documents:

1. ESRF form
2. ESRF process flow-chart
3. ESRF brochure
4. CT ESRF fact sheet
5. CT ERSF logic model
6. Information session presentation

I am still reviewing some documents and will provide further response upon completion of the review.

Thomas De Matteo

Assistant Agency Legal Director

Department of Children and Families

Phone: 860-550-6306

Fax: 860-560-7086

From: Michael Morisy

Dear Mr. Matteo:
Thank you very much for these initial records. Are there any contracts (appropriately redacted -- we're not interested in any price information) and/or correspondence concerning the implementation of the model?

Thanks again and happy holidays,
Ellen P. Goodman (working with M. Morisey)

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