Jim Bronskill, May 1, 2019
Federal information commissioner Caroline Maynard warns that financial uncertainty is making it impossible for her office to set goals and maintain momentum. The Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada handles complaints from Canadians who have difficulty obtaining federal government records due to delays or refusals to release files. It is currently facing about 3,000 complaints, each of which can take months or years to settle. The government has earmarked $3 million in the current year to deal with the backlog, but has made no long-term commitments.
David Skok, May 4, 2019
Canada ranks 57th in the Global Right to Information Rating of access to information laws, behind countries such as Brazil, Liberia and Uganda. The Global Right to Information Rating considers only legislation, not implementation, but according to David Skok, Editor-in-Chief of The Logic, Canada performs poorly at implementation as well.
Patrick O’Rourke, April 29, 2019
From the lighter side of FOI In The News… Connecticut man Jason Stiber made a practical use of FOI laws to dispute his distracted driving ticket. An FOI request revealed that the police officer who wrote the ticket was on the 15th hour of a 16-hour double-shift, which Stiber argued may have resulted in impaired judgment, causing the officer to mistake the McDonald’s hash brown that Stiber was holding for a cell phone.