In celebration of Right to Know Week 2023, the IPC is endorsing a statement highlighting the importance of access rights issued at the 14th edition of the International Conference of Information Commissioners (ICIC).
The statement emphasizes the critical need to protect access rights and fundamental freedoms on an international scale as fundamental pillars of social, economic, and democratic governance.
“Access to government-held information empowers individuals with knowledge and information to participate more fully in our democratic processes,” said Patricia Kosseim, Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario. “The statement from the ICIC highlights the collective strength of its members in working together to elevate access rights to the international agenda, acknowledging the importance of safeguarding these rights, and encouraging the public to exercise them.”
Key commitments of the ICIC statement include:
- Safeguarding fundamental rights as institutions in charge of guaranteeing access to information (ATI), promoting the importance of transparency and ATI among citizens, supporting the development of a common international position on the right of access to information.
- Improving the practice of information disclosure in alignment with the principles of transparency, accountability, open government, accessibility, and universality through collective efforts that strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of regulatory bodies, ultimately leading to greater access to information (ATI) for all.
- Inviting the public to be actively involved in safeguarding the protection of ATI as a fundamental right.
- Encouraging cooperation between regulators through collaboration and sharing of expertise in order to build and increase capacity to address common challenges.
From September 25 to October 1, Right to Know Week is celebrated across Canada to raise awareness of the importance of access rights and open, transparent government.
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