Recap: Recent OGIS/CDC Webinar on Requests for COVID-19 Records

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted agency FOIA programs in various ways– some of which we have discussed previously in this space, and others that were addressed in recent Department of Justice Office of Information Policy guidance. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has seen a staggering increase in its FOIA caseload in the … Continue reading Recap: Recent OGIS/CDC Webinar on Requests for COVID-19 Records

OGIS Publishes Results of COVID-19 FOIA Website Review

Federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) websites are more likely than not to be silent on how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting agency FOIA processing. A majority of federal FOIA websites – 62.6 percent – reviewed by the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) in May and early June do not alert requesters to changes … Continue reading OGIS Publishes Results of COVID-19 FOIA Website Review

COVID-19 and FOIA: DOJ Releases New Guidance

On May 28th, the Department of Justice, Office of Information Policy (OIP) posted Guidance for Agency FOIA Administration in Light of COVID-19 Impacts. Here are some highlights: Agencies’ legal obligations under the FOIA continue even as agencies are working during COVID-19. All of FOIA’s statutory time limits continue to apply during workforce adjustments. Agencies have … Continue reading COVID-19 and FOIA: DOJ Releases New Guidance

May 12th Webinar: FOIA Requests for CDC COVID-19 Records

The COVID-19 pandemic — and the Federal government’s response to the outbreak — has resulted in a steep increase in FOIA requests submitted to agencies on the front lines of that response. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) received nearly the same number of requests in the first half of Fiscal Year (FY) … Continue reading May 12th Webinar: FOIA Requests for CDC COVID-19 Records

Register to Attend Virtual Workshop on FOIA and Technology Best Practices for Agencies!

Young Men and Women in a Workshop (NARA ID: 7403517) The Department of Justice’s Office of Information Policy (OIP), and the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) invite you to a virtual Best Practices Workshop Series on FOIA and technology on Monday April 20, 2020.  The event is open to Federal employees and contractors who … Continue reading Register to Attend Virtual Workshop on FOIA and Technology Best Practices for Agencies!

COVID-19 and FOIA: Observations and Useful Links

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted nearly every aspect of life in the United States, and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) process is no exception. We will be sharing information in the coming weeks about how agencies are responding and providing links to resources that we hope will be useful to you.  Here are some … Continue reading COVID-19 and FOIA: Observations and Useful Links

Setting Expectations in Extraordinary Times

We at the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) hear you loud and clear! The COVID-19 pandemic is challenging FOIA professionals and requesters alike in unprecedented ways. Amid all the uncertainty, one thing is certain: response times are likely to increase. It is more important than ever to keep the lines of communication open. One … Continue reading Setting Expectations in Extraordinary Times

New Technology Committee Members Needed

If you are a government Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) professional with an interest in technology and innovation, we need you! In response to a recommendation from the 2016-2018 term of the FOIA Advisory Committee, the Archivist of the United States proposed that the Chief FOIA Officers (CFO) Council partner with the Chief Information Officer … Continue reading New Technology Committee Members Needed

Assessing FOIA Reading Rooms

The following post is written by Meredith Doviak, our National Archives colleague who is helping us assess methods agencies use to prepare documents for posting on agency FOIA reading rooms. In the decades since Congress amended FOIA in 1996 to expand the role of the agency FOIA reading room, the expectations and use of Federal … Continue reading Assessing FOIA Reading Rooms

Chief FOIA Officers Council’s Technology Committee Releases Best Practices and Recommendations

Eagle Release During Migratory Bird Day 2005 (National Archives ID: 166690378) Looking for ways to bolster the use of technology within the FOIA process? Check out a report from the Technology Committee (Committee) of the Chief FOIA Officers Council (Council) to the Council Co-Chairs that discusses FOIA Information Technology (IT) best practices and recommendations. In … Continue reading Chief FOIA Officers Council’s Technology Committee Releases Best Practices and Recommendations