Freedom of Information Act

I think the Freedom of Information Act 2000 ('FOI Act'), introduced by the then Labour Government, is one of the most effective pieces of legislation Parliament has ever passed. It has given the public, campaigners and the media a powerful tool with which to hold the Government to account and increase transparency and must be defended.

I agree there’s a strong argument to be made for strengthening the Act so that it covers organisations that are given public money, such as free schools, private companies who run NHS services and other large government contracts. I’m pleased that my Shadow Frontbench Colleagues launched a cross-party review into the Act at the end of last year, aimed at looking at how it should be strengthened to properly include private sector contractors given public money. I look forward to seeing the outcome of this review.

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Catherine West

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