28 September 2022.
Today, 28 September 2022, is the 20th anniversary of International Right to Know Day, recognised formally by the United Nations as International Day for Universal Access to Information (IDUAI). First recognised in 2002 by a group of civil society organisations focusing on the right to access information held by public authorities, or the right to information (RTI), the day was formally recognised by UNESCO in 2015 and then by the United Nations General Assembly as a formal UN day in 2019. It is a day to reflect on the importance of this key human right, to celebrate the many advances that have been made in terms of respecting this right and to discuss the many challenges that still lie ahead.
“It is a great pleasure to wish everyone a happy right to know day, on the 20th anniversary of this important day, and to look back on the major achievements over the last 20 years,” said Toby Mendel, Executive Director of CLD. “At the same time, even as the number of countries which have laws recognising and protecting this right continues to grow steadily, nearly one-third of all countries still lack legislation while many more countries face serious implementation challenges.”
The Centre for Law and Democracy (CLD) is undertaking or participating in a number of events/activities this year:
- Toby Mendel is participating in the main in-person UNESCO event for this day, taking place in Tashkent, Uzbekistan (see the programme here). The event is also being streamed live at the following link.
- CLD is hosting a panel discussion on Improving Access to Information for Nova Scotians in Halifax, Canada, in collaboration with the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for Nova Scotia. More details are available on the poster for the event, which can be viewed here.
- We have launched a review of the constitutional guarantees of this right for all countries on the RTI Rating website, here (previously, we had just assessed the constitutional guarantees of countries that had RTI laws).
- We have expanded the number of ratings of subnational laws included on the International and Subnational page of the RTI Rating, here, by adding ratings CLD completed for Bermuda, Nova Scotia and Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province that were previously accessible only on CLD’s main website. Other subnational ratings will be added in the coming weeks.
We hope that these events and resources will help contribute to greater realisation globally of the right to information.
Happy Right to Know Day!!
For further information, please contact:
Centre for Law and Democracy
+1 (514) 506-0948