Obama Administration Hosts Workshop on Openness…Closed to the Public

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Proving to cynics that “government openness” is an oxymoron, the Department of Justice decided to prevent the public from attending a workshop on Monday dedicated to the subject of accessing federal information. Employees from various government agencies gathered to discuss ways of handling Freedom of Information Act requests, but private citizens were shut out of the proceedings. The reasons given for the closed-door meeting included wanting to give federal workers sufficient room to attend and the chance to speak candidly about FOIA submissions. The workshop also served as an opportunity to introduce the new Office of Government Information Services, which the Obama administration has created to resolve disputes between the public and the U.S. government over FOIA requests.

The Department of Justice did make available to the media a PowerPoint presentation relating to the training session…but not a list of who attended.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
A Closed Meeting on Openness (by Sharon Theimer, Associated Press)
More Info from That Closed Open Gov’t Meeting (by Ed O’Keefe, Washington Post)
FOIA Public Liaisons Training (Department of Justice) (pdf)


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