Quebec City — Federal, provincial and territorial Information Commissioners and Ombudspersons, signed a joint resolution today aimed at reinforcing the public’s right to access government-held information.
Freedom of information regimes across Canada have faced persistent challenges in delivering timely responses to access to information requests, underscoring the need to implement alternative and efficient mechanisms for providing access to records, including through proactive disclosure.
It has never been more important for Canadians to have access to official government records, including historical records, if we are to maintain confidence in our democratic institutions. In our modern digital world, disinformation and misinformation spread very quickly. As recent news stories illustrate, timely access to accurate facts and reliable information is more critical than ever.
Recognizing the urgent need for change, the regulators are again calling upon their respective governments to modernize legislation, policies and information management practices to advance transparency and ensure the preservation and dissemination of Canada’s documentary heritage, so that all Canadians can better understand the nation’s past and present, and together chart a future path towards reconciliation.
Building on a joint resolution issued in 2019, the signing of this resolution by federal, provincial, and territorial Information Commissioners and Ombudspersons signals a renewed sense of urgency in a drastically changed context.
This resolution is a clarion call for federal, provincial and territorial governments to act swiftly and decisively in modernizing their respective laws, policies, and information management practices, to strengthen access to information regimes and support a culture of transparency across Canada.
For more information:
Commission d’accès à l’information du Québec
Office of the Information Commissioner of Canada