Right to Know Week 2020

September 15, 2020 - Sherri Fowler, Analyst

International Right to Know (RTK) day is celebrated each year on September 28th. In Canada, we celebrate Right to Know week this year from September 28th to October 4th.

So what is RTK, you might ask? Canada’s Right to Know website describes the purpose of RTK as being, “to raise awareness of an individual’s right to access government information, while promoting freedom of information as essential to both democracy and good governance…”.

For several years, our office has celebrated RTK in different ways, including hosting and participating in events. Because of the pandemic, having in person events just isn’t possible this year. However, because of the pandemic it is imperative that the show goes on. The way we do our jobs in the access and privacy field has changed since March and we need tools to figure out how to navigate how we do this important work going forward.

This year I am very excited that our office is taking part in what I think is Canada’s first RTK Canada-wide virtual event hosted by the Public Services Information Community Connection (PSICC). PSICC’s RTK Event will run from September 28th to October 1st for three hours each day (10:30 am to 1:30 pm SK time).

Day 1 (September 28th) is free and open to the public and includes an exciting lineup of speakers and topics. The Keynote presentation will feature Canadian Senator and former journalist, the Honourable Paula Simons, who will speak on the Changing State of Media. The presentation will be followed by a Commissioner Panel featuring the Federal Information Commissioner, the Federal Privacy Commissioner, the Manitoba Ombudsman, and the Information and Privacy Commissioners from British Columbia and Newfoundland and Labrador. I forgot to mention, Saskatchewan’s Commissioner will also be taking part. I’m pretty sure the pandemic will be a topic of discussion for this panel. Day one will be rounded out with a presentation from the Open Government Partnership.

Registration fees apply for presentations on September 29th to October 1st. Each of these days will include three presentations with topics ranging from Covid-19’s Impact on Access to Information to the Future of Virtual Healthcare. You can register for one, two or all three days. For further details, check out the agenda at a glance: https://psimcc.ca/rtk2020/program.

If you have any questions about this RTK event, you can contact the PSICC organizers at 613-226-8317.

I hope to see you “virtually” there.

 

 

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