Category: Freedom of Information

  • Thirty Year Rule Review

    The National Archives has launched an online consultation on planned changes to the thirty year rule which governs the availability of public records to researchers. Anyone interested can contribute here. The rationale for the changes was outlined by Gordon Brown in his speech on liberty in October: It is an irony that the information that…

  • Unanswered questions in the De Menezes case

    Smearing the victim is all too common in deaths in custody cases, and it’s about time somebody was held accountable, so I agree with those who say that Ian Blair should resign over the death of Jean Charles De Menezes. Nevertheless, I wonder whether Blair and the Met are taking the rap for other agencies.…

  • Brown opens the books on Thatcherism

    As one of those who petitioned against the Government’s plans to restrict the Freedom of Information Act, it would be remiss of me not to to welcome the fact that Gordon Brown dropped the idea today. I’m currently going round the houses to get access to a file from the 1970s, so I am also…

  • Blair confirms special forces role in De Menezes case

    Postman Patel points us towards some significant developments concerning the role of Army special forces in the death of Jean Charles De Menezes. Last Thursday, Sir Ian Blair admitted to the Metropolitan Police Authority that the SAS were involved in the operation. Yesterday’s Sunday Express carried what it claims is a picture of a soldier…

  • Informers: Britain’s Frank Costellos

    I finally got around to watching Martin Scorsese’s The Departed the other day, an excellent film that raises some interesting questions about the role of informers in modern policing. In some ways The Departed resembles a Cold War spy thriller as much as a gangster flick. It points up the fact that every informer is…

  • Operation Banner – An analysis of Military Operations in Northern Ireland

    The Pat Finucane Centre has obtained an FOI copy of the British Army’s own analysis of it’s role during the Troubles, available here. Loyalist violence and the links between loyalist paramilitaries and the state has been airbrushed out of this military history, prepared ‘under the Direction of the Chief of the General Staff’. In 2006,…

  • Dean Godson on Open Government

    "More “open” government is not necessarily better government," the Policy Exchange research director argues today in a Times article on the Freedom of Information (Amendment) Bill which has Tim Worstall wanting to know, "Who is this Dean Godson character?" You may well ask. Related post series: PC Spooks?US covert action in Britain today

  • MPs vote themselves exemption from Freedom of Information

  • Government responds to Freedom of Information petition

    The Prime Minister’s Office has issued a response to the Downing Street petition against the proposed changes to the Freedom of Information Act, which received 1,609 signatures:

  • 24 hours to sign Freedom of Information petition

    The Downing Street petition against the proposed restrictions to the Freedom of Information Act closes tomorrow (Friday 23 January). Please consider signing if you haven’t already.