Editor's Note

The FOI Advocate is a compendium of ideas, edited story excerpts and other materials from a variety of Web sites, as well as original concepts and analysis. When the information comes directly from another source, it will be attributed and a link will be provided whenever possible. The blog relies on the accuracy and integrity of the original sources cited. We will correct errors and inaccuracies when we become aware of them.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Supreme Court of Canada rules access to information not a constitutional right

The Supreme Court of Canada has taken a small step toward recognizing that citizens sometimes need access to government documents to exercise freedom of expression, but stopped short of calling it a broad constitutional right.

On a practical level, Thursday’s ruling means that, after 13 years, it is still uncertain whether the public will ever learn details of an OPP report into the botched prosecution of two men charged with murdering reputed mobster Domenic Racco.

On a broader level, the long-awaited decision leaves Canada eclipsed by countries such as South Africa, Norway and Bulgaria, which have made access to information a component of their constitutions.

“We don’t have that and our Supreme Court isn’t willing to take us there either,” said Paul Schabas, a lawyer representing the Canadian Newspaper Association and other media organizations intervening in the case.

Read the rest here.

No comments: