DAOD 1001-0, Access to Information
Date of Issue: 1999-10-12
Application: This is an order that applies to members of the Canadian Forces (CF) and a directive that applies to employees of the Department of National Defence (DND).
Supersession: NDHQ Instruction DG Exec Sec 3/91 Implementation - Access to Information Act
Approval Authority: This DAOD is issued under the authority of the Assistant Deputy Minister (Finance and Corporate Services) (ADM (Fin CS)).
Enquiries: Director Access to Information and Privacy (DAIP)
- Excluded Material (documents exclus)
- The Access to Information Act (AIA) applies to all records under the
control of federal institutions, except for the following categories of information
that are specifically excluded from the scope of the AIA:
- published material;
- material available for purchase by the public;
- library or museum material made or acquired and preserved solely for public reference or exhibition purposes;
- material placed in the National Archives, the National Library or the National Museums of Canada by or on behalf of persons or organizations other than government institutions; and
- confidences of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada.
- Exemption (exception)
- An exemption is a provision of the Access to Information Act (AIA) that entitles the head of a federal institution to refuse to disclose a record, or any part of a record, requested under the AIA.
- Record (document)
- A record includes any correspondence, memorandum, book, plan, map, drawing, diagram, pictorial or graphic work, photograph, film, microform, sound recording, videotape, machine readable record and any other documentary material, regardless of physical form or characteristics, and any copy thereof.
This DAOD deals with access to information. The Access to Information Act (AIA) was passed in 1983 to provide a right of access to information in records under the control of the Government of Canada, in accordance with principles that government information should be available to the public, that necessary exemptions should be limited and specific and that decisions to refuse to disclose government information should be reviewed independently of government.
DND has put into place an Access to Information program that is intended to complement, not replace, existing methods of public access to departmental records. Informal requests for records will continue to be accepted and processed outside the Access to Information Act procedures. For more information on formal requests, see DAOD 1001-1, Formal Requests for Access to Departmental Information. For more information on informal requests, see DAOD 1001-2, Informal Requests for Access to Departmental Information.
Obstructing Right of Access - Offence and Punishment
The AIA was amended in 1999 making it an indictable offence, or an offence punishable on summary conviction, to destroy, mutilate, or alter a record; to falsify a record or make a false record; to conceal a record; or direct, propose, or counsel any person in any manner to take such actions with the intent to deny the right of access provided by the AIA.
A person guilty of an indictable offence is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years, or to a fine not exceeding $10,000, or to both. A person guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to a fine not exceeding $5,000, or to both.
Guidance respecting the reporting of such offences is contained in NDHQ Policy Directive Revised Military Police Investigation Policy distributed to all Commanding Officers. In accordance with that Directive, the National Investigative Service (NIS) is the responsible investigating authority, and is therefore the organization to whom contraventions of the above AIA provisions are to be reported.
DND is committed to:
- maintaining open and transparent access to its records; and
- responding to requests made under the AIA within the time limits as provided for in the Act.
The following table identifies the authorities responsible for implementing the access to information policy.
|The...||has/have the authority to...|
Delegated DAIP Alternate
ADM (Fin CS)
Types of Requests
There are two types of requests for access to records:
- formal - in writing, to the departmental Access to Information Coordinator (DAIP) indicating that the request is being made under the AIA; and
- informal - in writing or verbally, to departmental Offices of Primary Interest (OPIs).
For more information on formal requests, see DAOD 1001-1, Formal Requests for Access to Departmental Information. For more information on informal requests, see DAOD 1001-2, Informal Requests for Access to Departmental Information.
Language of Requests
An applicant may request that access to a record be given in either official language, as specified. If access is granted and the record exists in the language specified, it will be provided forthwith. Where a record does not exist in the language specified and it is determined by DAIP to be in the public interest to translate it, the record will be translated within a reasonable period of time. The decision to prepare or deny a translation will be made on a case-by-case basis.
- Access to Information Act
- Access to Information Regulations
- Access to Information Act Extension Order No. 1
- Access to Information Act Designation Order
- Treasury Board Manual (Information and Administrative Management Component) - Access to Information Volume
- NDHQ Policy Directive Revised Military Police Investigation Policy