Scottish Information Commissioner: Your right to know and your right to appeal

Kevin Dunion, Scottish Information Commissioner, comments on how information will be released under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act that would never otherwise see the light of day:

"The public have collectively been regarded as unauthorised persons and official sanction has been required before information was released. A commonplace response to requests would be: "Who wants to know and why?" "Need to know" became a managerial culture as much as a legal framework. The Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002, which comes into effect on 1 January, transforms this power relationship. No longer will people have to demonstrate why they want information. Now they have a right to access it, and public officials in the 10,000 authorities covered by the Act (including the Scottish Executive, councils, police, NHS and universities) have to comply with their requests."

A powerful new tool in our quest for freedom (The Scotsman, 29 December 2004 - free registration is required to view this article).