Monday, April 06, 2009

Information age fails among feds - Brantford Expositor - Ontario, CA

Information age fails among feds - Brantford Expositor - Ontario, CA: "Drapeau feels that the 25-year history of the act is being ignored. A 40% turnover of access to information investigators, and the elimination of most of the executives in the commissioner's office, has meant a loss of corporate memory and sacrifice of invaluable experience.
Delays are the nightmare for information applicants. Among the biggest government stonewallers in providing timely information are the Department of National Defence, RCMP, Health Canada, Foreign Affairs and International Trade, and Public Works and Government Services. Marleau complains about their tardiness.
In his last annual report as information commissioner (1998-2006), John Reid noted that 'the name of the game, all too often, is how to resist transparency and engage in damage control by ignoring response deadlines.'
Things are worse now than they were then. While Marleau would like to correct the obstacles, his 12 recommendations which would give him more power, would also remove him from direct contact with people and give him sole power to investigate or not to investigate a complaint -- discretionary power that could lead to abuses"

This is an important tool for accountability- it should be fast, not arbitrary and visible -Canadians should not be satisfied with excuses of why it does not work - push your MPS to get performance- PR

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