Thursday, October 04, 2012

Extending freedom of information in the UK

While our government is rolling back the OIA, using privatisation and public-private-partnerships to shield public information from scrutiny, the UK Labour Party has just promised to do the opposite, and extend their Freedom of Information Act to cover privatised services:

Labour would apply freedom of information (FoI) laws to private firms working for the government, shadow justice secretary Sadiq Khan has said.

Mr Khan said companies running prisons or delivering education or health services should be covered.

Extending FoI would bring "disinfecting transparency" to the private provision of public services, he told the Labour Party conference.

This is a good move, and we should do the same here. These companies are performing a public function, and therefore the information they generate in the process should be public. It is that simple.