Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Media Roundup

Heather Brooke has covered some FOI stories while I've been off - see Your Right to Know

Some key stories:

Guardian 4th July - Revealed: how drugs war failed
"The profit margins for major traffickers of heroin into Britain are so high they outstrip luxury goods companies such as Louis Vuitton and Gucci, according to a study that Downing Street is refusing to publish under freedom of information legislation."

Guardian 4th July - Ministers 'used Live 8 to bury' critical report
"The documents were released after requests under the Freedom of Information Act, but the timing of their publication - at 5pm on Friday, hours before the Live 8 concerts - prompted accusations of spin."

Birmingham Evening Mail 29th June - West Midlands Police carried out half of all 'stop and searches'
"Nearly half of all people in Britain quizzed by police under controversial stop and search rules were in the West Midlands. A total of 20,000 out of 40,000 people questioned as part of the unpopular legislation were stopped by West Midlands Police. The figures for Section 60 searches, which allow officers to stop people 'without reasonable suspicion', were released under the Freedom of Information Act."

FT.com - UK failed to tackle Nigeria bribes claim
"The Export Credits Guarantee Department did little more than ask Halliburton – one of four companies accused of paying $172m (€142m, £94m) in bribes – whether the allegations were true, according to the papers obtained under the Freedom of Information act."

Carlisle News and Star - Reveal full report on Thorp spill demands Greenpeace
"GREENPEACE campaigners are calling for a full disclosure of the investigation report into last year’s nuclear leak at Sellafield’s Thorp plant. BNFL has published the 34-page report into how 83 cubic metres of highly-radioactive acid liquid leaked and lay undetected for months – but parts of the report, including the identity of the inquiry panel, are blacked out on the company’s web site. Greenpeace has now issued a Freedom of Information request for the full disclosure of the reports."

BBC news -Work dispute change for draft law
"People in Jersey may not be able to get information on employment disputes if the States agrees changes to the planned Freedom of Information law. "

Guardian - Whitehall finding it hard to give up secrets
"Ministers and Whitehall mandarins are failing to open up the government and release information promptly to the public as promised, according to an official report published yesterday."

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