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Government Operations committee  Absolutely. Actually, I would encourage this committee to also look at a study that was done in the seventies on the issue of corporate concentration in Canada. There were some very good recommendations in that study about the need for greater disclosure on the part of corporatio

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  I think Mr. Cutler is absolutely right. We need to have a broader conversation about the issue of corruption in this country. We need to have a broader conversation about the issue of accountability in this country. We need to protect those who are best-positioned to blow the whi

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  That's actually a really good question. No one, really. I think that's a crying need in this country—it's a crying need. I think if we had more information about what was going on in the private sector by the public sector that would help too. One of the things that I would en

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  I think we're too sensitive to the needs of third parties when it comes to access to information requests. In most cases, we're talking about government information that the public has a right to know about to a greater or lesser extent. I think we're often too obsessed with priv

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  Absolutely. I couldn't have put it better myself.

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  I think we need to have a real substantive discussion about cabinet confidentiality in this country, which we didn't really have when the Access to Information Act was being debated, at least not in a fulsome way. What we're essentially saying is that Canadians have no right to k

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  I would say let's have that conversation, but I would also say that in a lot of cases we're simply talking about embarrassment here. It's funny. The reason for secrecy is actually the same reason as the need for information. Because if people have information, then they have cont

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  Thank you so much.

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  It's certainly not a concern I've heard. I speak mostly with the journalistic community, being a former investigative journalist. That said, I can definitely see the concern. If sensitive information is being requested, information that, for example, falls under the national secu

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  It's very true. That speaks to the built-in secrecy that is inherent in our system of government. When you have government's primary decision-making body's, cabinet's, business being conducted under a shroud of confidentiality, that has an effect on the overall culture of governm

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  Other than through the statement that was made by the Treasury Board president, it hasn't. However, this has been, in a lot of ways, the history of freedom of information in this country. As an example, when the Canadian Bar Association was advocating for freedom of information i

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  That's a good question. I'm not sure if there is actually a comparable measurement for whistle-blowing legislation. My colleague Allan Cutler would be better positioned to answer that question. What I do know is that there has been a substantive criticism of how out of step we ar

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  That's a really good question. I think at the present moment in time we don't know the answer, because we haven't implemented such a system. We do know that financial protections for whistle-blowers, financial incentives for whistle-blowers, have worked in other jurisdictions,

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  That's a very good question. This committee has actually assembled, as one of your members just mentioned, an extensive list of recommendations on how Canada's whistle-blower law can be improved. The government should act on those recommendations. This isn't rocket science. In ma

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman

Government Operations committee  I think the Information Commissioner did an excellent job of outlining those factors. Given the fact that employees are working from home, they perhaps do not have ready access to some records and documents or perhaps the networks that they're accessing those records and document

June 19th, 2020Committee meeting

Sean Holman