Special Sessions of the CAJP

At the request of the General Assembly, the Committee on Juridical and Political Affairs of the Permanent Council has conducted three special sessions on access to public information that were coordinated by the Department of International Law.

The first two special sessions, taking place in 2006 and 2008, served to promote, impart, and exchange experiences and knowledge with respect to access to information and the relationship with citizen participation. The third special session, held on December 13, 2010, served to determine the effectiveness of the OAS’ activities in terms of access to information and to plan their future work.

The special session included the participation of the Inter-American Juridical Committee, the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, the Secretariat for Juridical Affairs, the Department of International Law, and the Secretariat for Political Affairs. Also in attendance were many experts who participated in the drafting of the model law and implementation guide, as well as civil society organizations dedicated to ensuring the right of access to information in the continent, including The Carter Center and the Regional Alliance for Access to Information and Freedom of Expression and thirty-three civil society organizations registered with the OAS. Also participating were the Member States’ experts, who offered their comments on the model law and considerations for an Inter-American Program, including the Instituto Federal de Acceso a la Información y Protección de Datos (México) and the Consejo para la Transparencia (Chile). Finally, the World Bank also participated, presenting its newly adopted policy on access to information that is applicable to all branches of the institution.