March means more than warmer temperatures for those of us in the transparency community—it also means Sunshine Week, the annual nationwide celebration of access to public information. Since the American Society of News Editors (ASNE) launched the initiative 15 years ago, journalists, librarians, concerned citizens, civil society organizations, elected officials, and government employees alike have … Continue reading Sunshine Week 2020
Please mark your calendars and join us for several upcoming events in the William G. McGowan Theater at the National Archives in Washington, DC. The FOIA Advisory Committee meets from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday March 5th to consider proposed recommendations from the FOIA Advisory Committee’s three subcommittees: Records Management, Time/Volume and Vision. Meeting … Continue reading Mark Your Calendars!
McLain, Miss., Feb. 22, 2013 - FEMA assesses damages from flash floods in Greene County. (National Archives ID: 24475833) Federal agencies are generally complying with FOIA’s mandate to create procedures for preparing documents to post on FOIA reading rooms, and more often than not, the responsibility for prepping the documents rests with the FOIA staff. That … Continue reading OGIS Publishes Report Based on Agency Self-Assessments
Are you an agency FOIA professional interested in developing an automated processing system? U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) invites you to a two-hour demonstration of its FOIA processing system at 1:30 p.m. EST Wednesday February 12th. The demonstration will take place at the USCIS Washington, DC office at 111 Massachusetts Avenue, NW as well … Continue reading USCIS demos open-source code system
OGIS is excited to report that it was recently welcomed as one of the first accredited official members of the International Conference of Information Commissioners (ICIC). The ICIC connects Information Commissioners, Ombudsmen and other bodies charged with overseeing the implementation of Access to Public Information legislation around the world. The ICIC’s values of Respect and … Continue reading OGIS Officially Joins the International Access Community
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) processors and requesters who took a voluntary survey to help the Federal FOIA Advisory Committee better understand the challenges of navigating the FOIA process may wish to attend the next Committee meeting on December 6, 2019. The meeting, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the William G. McGowan Theater … Continue reading Join Us December 6 for the Next FOIA Advisory Committee Meeting!
Agency FOIA professionals who are looking for ways to improve their FOIA programs may wish to consider 43 Best Practices from the 2016-2018 term of the FOIA Advisory Committee. The Best Practices, which offer a range of suggestions regarding accessibility, process management, talent management, technology, and proactive disclosures, are detailed in the Committee’s 2018 Final … Continue reading Best Practices for Bettering Your FOIA Program
Are you looking for a unique training opportunity for your agency’s FOIA staff, one that will improve communications within your FOIA program and with FOIA requesters? If so, now is a great time to schedule 2020 Dispute Resolution Training for FOIA Professionals for your agency. OGIS offers training sessions to individual agencies as our schedule … Continue reading Dispute Resolution Training for Agencies
OGIS Director Alina M. Semo recently testified before a House Subcommittee about eight OGIS assessments at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). OGIS, mandated by Congress to review and identify ways to improve FOIA compliance, reviewed FOIA programs at seven DHS components between September 2015 and February 2018. OGIS also assessed DHS’s compliance with the … Continue reading OGIS Director Testifies Before House Subcommittee
As you may have heard, on June 24, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion on a case involving the “privileged or confidential” requirement of FOIA Exemption 4, Food Mktg Inst. v. Argus Leader Media, 139 S. Ct. 915 (June 24, 2019). Exemption 4 protects "trade secrets and commercial or financial information obtained from … Continue reading Department of Justice Releases New Guidance on FOIA Exemption 4