Government & Corporate Transparency

The Issue

Canadians’ right of access to information held by governments and public agencies is embarrassingly inadequate. Internationally, the quality of our access to information law ranks 59th out of 102 countries. The implementation of the law makes matters even worse – often imposing excessive delays, high costs, and significant censorship.  Even more limited is the public’s right of access to information about the decisions and practices of the corporate sector that increasingly shape every aspect of our lives.

Why It Matters

Healthy democracy depends on an informed public with ready access to the information it needs to engage in effective political decision-making.

Our Work

The Centre for Free Expression works to promote greater government and corporate transparency through public education and advocacy for better right to know laws and practices. 

Resources

Commentary

During COVID-19, government transparency takes a beating

April 25, 2020 - Secrecy and autocratic, erratic government should not become the new normal during or after the COVID-19 crisis. Rather, as former health minister Jane Philpott (currently working at COVID-19 intake centre) has said, what is needed is “radical transparency” to keep Canadians abreast of developments.

Commentary

COVID-19 Invades and Compromises Our Privacy

By Ken Rubin

April 20, 2020 - COVID-19 puts privacy rights under attack. Zoom-bomers, COVID-19 scammers, and cellphone trackers are gaining ground as Canadians self-isolate.

Commentary

Three Trudeau ministers among those stalling access to information requests

June 17, 2019 - The ministers overseeing Health, Justice and Innovation departments must do a better job of living up to the prime minister's promises of transparency.

Commentary

Why the secrecy on this "expert" centre?

June 13, 2019 - Public Safety has quietly set up a centre for expertise to assist security and intelligence departments in the responsible use of the Security of Canada Information Disclosure Act, known as SCIDA. Yet vitually no one knows about the centre, or what it is doing. This is worrisome.