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Official Information Act

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Should agencies be punished for breaching the OIA?

Friday, March 20th, 2009

Stephen Franks makes an interesting comment in response to my post below, where I argued that the Department of Corrections breached the Official Information Act. Should agencies be punished for wilful breaches?  (There are no sanctions for breach of the OIA, except criticism from the Ombudsmen). Are we becoming increasingly disdainful of laws that can’t […]

OIA and the Department of Corrections

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

You might have seen me on One News last Friday, commenting on the Department of Corrections’ response to TVNZ’s Official Information Act request. I was pretty critical of the department, who had provided minimal information. Either they genuinely didn’t know the answers, which was mind-boggling, I said, or they were lying about it. TVNZ used […]

Hooten boasts of flouting the law

Sunday, August 24th, 2008

I guess you have to admire Matthew Hooten’s honesty for admitting that, as a Beehive staffer, he’s advised departments to breach the Official Information Act. And I don’t doubt that this government does the same thing. But I find this high-fiving about it pretty sickening: As a Beehive staffer in the 1990s, I regularly “suggested” that […]

Free speech audit in Australia

Thursday, December 6th, 2007

Former NSW Ombudsman Irene Moss has conducted an audit into the state of free speech in Australia and concluded that “free speech and media freedom are being whittled away by gradual and sometimes almost imperceptible degrees.” I confess I’m always a bit suspicious of death-by-a-thousand-cuts claims, since they often overlook or underestimate the ways in which free […]

OIA book out

Thursday, December 6th, 2007

Nicola White has just released her book on the performance of the Official Information Act. She gives it a B. The book is called “Free and Frank: Making the Official Information Act 1982 work better”. It’s indispensible for anyone who wants to understand the workings of the OIA. The fact that Nicola used to work at […]

Comments on Rogers case

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

The missing angle in the media Did anyone in the media report that virtually all the Supreme Court judges seem to believe that, as Blanchard J puts it, “the police would appear to have acted beyond their powers” in releasing the videotaped confession to the media, because they are required to treat evidence as secret […]

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