Sunshine Week celebrates open government

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Open government advocates throughout the country are celebrating the 14 annual Sunshine Week this week. The week-long event is a national campaign to promote dialogue about the importance of transparency and freedom of information.

The New England First Amendment Coalition has joined advocates, including news media, civic groups, libraries, nonprofits, schools and others advocating for the public’s right to know.

The coalition sponsors events and publishes blog posts to address transparency issues in every New England state. It has temporarily changed its familiar blue logo to a sun in honor of the public awareness campaign.

Sunshine Week “is an opportunity to assess local freedom of information laws,” wrote Justin Silverman, the coalition’s executive director. “These laws intend to shine a light, or ‘sunshine,’ on the work of government and to help citizens better understand what their elected officials are doing on their behalf.” 

While writing about the flaws in the Massachusetts public records law, he said “There is still too much secrecy in the Commonwealth.”

There will be events throughout the region. The coalition will also post FOI reports from throughout the region. The reports are written by some of the area’s leading advocates for open government. They will discuss the progress being made and the challenges that still exist.

For more information about Sunshine Week and the events ahead, visit: www.nefac.org.

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