Libraries Promoting the Right to Access Public Information

In September 2008 the “Law for Accessing Public Information” was approved, as an effort to promote this basic human right, citizen participation and transparency in the management of public institutions. However, many Guatemalan citizens are unaware of this right and the process of requesting public information, especially in rural areas. Our latest workshop was about teaching the young participants about this right, its background and how to take advantage of it through technology.

David Gaitán from Acción Ciudadana

In this occasion we had the presence of coordinators from Acción Ciudadana (Citizen Action) and the Transparency and Integrity Program from USAID. During the workshop every participant received an easy to understand guide about how to access public information, as well as the law and documents about promoting transparency and the struggle against corruption.

They also learned how to request information to public institutions through their websites. At the end of the workshop most of the youngsters had sent information requests to different public institutions, including the Ministry of Minery and the Ministry of Finances, about approval of minery licenses and the resources destined to their communities for education, among others.  Soon our participants will be sharing the results of these requests trough the library blogs.

Thanks to Rising Voices, Acción Ciudadana and the Transparency and Integrity Program, our libraries have taken another step forward in the promotion of the principles of open societies.

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