Have you ever wanted to know:
- Which doctor has the best operation success rate in your health trust?
- If MI5 has a file on you?
- The actual number and type of crimes that happen in your street?
- Which streets are targeted by parking attendants in your area?
- Which buildings have failed their fire safety inspections?
The public had no right to most of this information - until now. In 2005 the Freedom of Information Act came into force giving the British public a legal right, for the first time, to access information from more than 100,000 public authorities. But in order to take advantage of this new right you first have to know who holds the information and how to get it. This guide gives you the tools you need to get the information you want.
This edition comes with a new foreword by Ian Hislop.
Heather Brooke worked in the United States as a newspaper reporter. She used the American FOI Act to uncover politicians misuse of public funds for travel and personal election campaigning. Later, as a crime reporter in South Carolina for a New York Times regional newspaper, she uncovered flaws in the state's forensic crime lab and exposed dangerous practices in funeral homes. Both investigations resulted in changes to state law. She is the author of Your Right to Know: How to Use the Freedom of Information Act and Other Access Laws (Pluto, 2006).
Foreword by Ian Hislop Introduction Chapter 1 - FOI in practice Chapter 2 - Scotland Chapter 3 - Laws of Access Chapter 4 - Central Government Chapter 5 - Intelligence, Security and Defence Chapter 6 - Transport Chapter 7 - The Justice System Chapter 8 - Law Enforcement and Civil Defence Chapter 9 - Health Chapter 10 - The Environment Chapter 11 - Local Government Chapter 12 - Education Chapter 13 - Private Companies Chapter 14 - Information about Individuals Conclusion Appendix - Letters for requesting information