There you have it. Three, count em, three Information and Privacy Commissioners for British Columbia have stated that the ban on access to information on abortion is wrong….with Commissioner Denham even stating that British Columbia is not meeting international standards.
Will the government listen?
“I agree with my predecessors that a mandatory exception based solely on the subject-matter of the record is a feature of outmoded access laws. The current international standard for exceptions to disclosure is that all exceptions should be harms based. I would further agree that ss.22 of FIPPA is capable of protecting such information as would identify abortion service providers or patients or threaten their health or safety.”
-Elizabeth Denham, Information & Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia – November 8, 2011
“It is my view that, in general terms, an exception to the Act for a specific subject matter is unnecessary”
-Paul Fraser, QC, former Information & Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia –Feb 16, 2010
My first concern is that the amendment fundamentally changes the nature of the FOI Act, by introducing a mandatory exception based soley on the subject-matter of a record. Such a subject-matter exception is a feature of outmoded, and rightly denigrated, access and privacy laws.
–David Loukidelis, former Information & Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia – March 30, 2001