Province Launches Review of Information, Privacy Legislation
The Province is asking Nova Scotians for their input on the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy (FOIPOP) Act as part of a review of the 30-year-old legislation.
“Our access to information and privacy laws in Nova Scotia have not been updated in many years,” said Attorney General and Justice Minister Brad Johns. “It is important that we update the legislation so that it continues to provide public access to important information held by government while also ensuring it keeps pace with emerging technology and provides the appropriate privacy protections for the digital age.”
The review of the FOIPOP Act is part of a comprehensive review of the information access and privacy legislative framework in Nova Scotia. An internal working group will also be looking at the Privacy Review Officer Act, the Personal Information International Disclosure Protection Act and Part 20 of the Municipal Government Act.
The group’s work will include a review of past recommendations by the former information and privacy commissioner and targeted consultations with the commissioner’s office, government departments, municipalities, the media, legislative caucus offices and public bodies affected by the legislation.
Submissions are welcome from all Nova Scotians, and the deadline is November 30. They can be made online at https://novascotia.ca/information-access-and-privacy-engagement or by mail: Department of Justice, ATTN: FOIPOP Modernization, P.O. Box 7, Halifax, N.S., B3J 2L6.
The working group will prepare a package of legislative options and recommendations for submission to the Minister of Justice to be tabled in the House of Assembly.
- the FOIPOP Act has been in effect since 1994, and the last major update was in 1999
- more than 400 public sector entities including universities, colleges, health authorities, regional centres for education, Crown corporations and provincial government departments, municipalities, agencies, boards and commissions fall under the FOIPOP Act or related access legislation
- in 2022-2023, there were more than 5,000 requests for records across public sector entities that are subject to access to information legislation, nearly five times the volume of 20 years ago
- this week is Right to Know Week; it is marked each year in Canada to raise awareness of the importance of access rights and open, transparent government
Terms of reference for the review: https://novascotia.ca/information-access-and-privacy-engagement/docs/foipop-review-terms-reference.pdf