PIJI partnered with the Centre for Advancing Journalism (CAJ) to make a submission to the Senate Inquiry into Freedom of Information.
As outlined in our submission, we see Freedom of Information as an important tool for public interest journalism that allows for adequate scrutiny of public institutions. To allow these benefits to be delivered, FOI decisions and appeals processes should be made quickly, and with an emphasis on disclosure.
Our submission made the following recommendations:
- That the necessary resources are provided to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner to enable timely resolution of applications and appeals.
- Introduce a statutory timeframe but do so alongside more efficient review processes, more resourcing to the Office of the Australia Information Commissioner, and improved FOI culture within the APS.
- That additional resources be committed to FOI agencies and the Information Commissioner.
- Efforts should be taken to provide education and training opportunities for FOI staff, as well as those in government agency management and leadership positions, to promote awareness of the Freedom of Information Act 1982 and proactively foster a positive FOI culture.
Read the full submission here.
Our submission was one of 19 made to the inquiry. Read the other submissions here.