Yukon Ombudsman Yukon Information and Privacy Commissioner Yukon Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner

Yukon Information and Privacy Commissioner

Yukon Information and Privacy Commissioner marks Right to Know Day and Week by highlighting important changes to Yukon access and privacy legislation

Tue, Sep 28, 2021

WHITEHORSE – To mark Right to Know Day and Week in the Yukon, the Information and Privacy Commissioner (IPC), Diane McLeod-McKay, is providing information to Yukoners about significant changes that come with the new access and privacy legislation that went into effect a few months ago.

Right to Know Week takes place September 27th to October 3rd this year, with Right to Know Day occurring on September 28th. The purpose of both is to raise awareness amongst citizens of their right to access government information, while promoting freedom of information as essential to both democracy and good governance.

The Yukon’s new Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (ATIPPA) went into effect on April 1st of this year.

“This is a perfect time to talk about the Yukon’s new access and privacy legislation, including the importance of training and public education about the law,” said McLeod-McKay. “The new legislation contains features that facilitate innovation by public bodies covered by the Act by authorizing the use of emerging technologies to deliver services. It also increases the obligations of public bodies in many areas, including security of personal information and the duty to warn an individual, group or the public if there is a risk of significant harm caused by a serious environmental, health or safety hazard. As well, ATIPPA provides my office with additional powers of oversight, including the power to initiate an investigation on my own motion.”

To mark Right to Know Week and Day, McLeod-McKay submitted a letter to the editor to the Yukon News, Whitehorse Star and l’aurore boreale, as part of her responsibility to educate the public and public bodies about ATIPPA. That obligation is set out in the new Act. The letter can be read here. In addition, McLeod-McKay’s office has developed a number of new guidance documents and other resources to assist public bodies in carrying out their responsibilities under ATIPPA. These and other resources can be found here.

“I encourage Yukoners and public bodies to review and use these materials,” added McLeod-McKay. “In the past, there has been a chronic lack of sufficient support and training by public bodies on access and privacy legislation for staff who are responsible for processing access to information requests. This has often resulted in lengthy delays and errors. We will continue to work to assist public bodies in their responsibility to properly train their staff on ATIPPA, so that the Act is administered properly.”

The Ombudsman, Information and Privacy Commissioner, and Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner is an independent officer of the Yukon Legislative Assembly. For more information, please go to www.yukonombudsman.ca.

To download a PDF of this news release, click here.


Elaine Schiman
Communications Manager
Office of the Yukon Ombudsman, Information and Privacy Commissioner & Public Interest Disclosure Commissioner

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