Freedom of Information in practice in Scotland

New figures show that 74% of FOI requests made last year resulted in information being disclosed.  65% of those who appealed against a initial denial of the FOI request, received a decision which found wholly or partly in their favour.

Anyone can make a Freedom Of Information (FOI) request to public services to find out information not currently in the public domain.  Certain conditions apply to the FOI requests.  You can find out more about these rights here: http://www.itspublicknowledge.info/YourRights/YourRights.aspx

The Scottish Information Commissioner said:

“It’s heartening to see how much the FOI right is used, and how it helps people to raise important issues and achieve positive change, from campaigning on local issues to identifying how public funds have been spent, highlighting NHS waiting times or checking the safety of public buildings. It’s about what people want to know, not necessarily what authorities think they want or need to know.”

Transparency is an important human rights tool that can be used to ensure justice and challenge people in power.  It is also one of the four principles of the Scotland Declaration on Human Rights – see text of the Declaration here.

 

 

 

Image credit: Mark Deckers, Flickr