The Canadian Newspaper Association, Canadian Taxpayers Federation and FIPA are urging Prime Minister Harper to follow the lead of President Barack Obama and act immediately to end the access-to-information crisis in Canada.
On his first day in office, President Obama issued new orders designed to improve the U.S. government’s openness and transparency. The first directive instructs all agencies and departments to “adopt a presumption in favor” of Freedom of Information Act requests, while the second orders the director of the Office of Management and Budget to issue recommendations on making the federal government more transparent.
The contrast with the situation in Canada is remarkable: Federal Information Commissioner Robert Marleau told a newspaper he is “pulling his hair out” because of the disastrous state of the Canadian access-to-information system.
In an interview in La Presse, Marleau said information management in the federal government is bordering on a crisis, and that access to information is already in crisis.