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Independent scrutiny 'vital' in cases of non-disclosure

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THE Policy Council will consider at its meeting today whether dealing with complaints about confidentiality in-house could undermine its proposed code of practice for access to information.

THE Policy Council will consider at its meeting today whether dealing with complaints about confidentiality in-house could undermine its proposed code of practice for access to information.

The concern was raised by Deputy Chris Green, pictured, who said there should be some independent scrutiny – perhaps overseen by a jurat – of a department's decision whether or not to disclose information.

'I feel independent scrutiny is crucial,' he said. 'The danger of producing a code of practice without including that impartial element runs the risk of undermining the whole system.'

The Policy Council's proposed code, which would see departments sign up to a presumption of disclosure and proactive publication, will be debated at this month's States meeting.

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