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Annual Report on the Access to Information Act for the period ending March 31, 2013

2.   Key Activities and Accomplishments

2.1   Education and Training

Educating Elections Canada staff about the Access to Information Act supports our duty to assist individuals who request records under the organization's control. In 2012–2013, Elections Canada conducted two training sessions for 25 new employees on their ATIP responsibilities. The ATIP Office also delivered a presentation to 22 senior managers regarding the new directive on the administration of the Access to Information Act. Additionally, four Elections Canada employees received training on their responsibilities as liaisons between their sector and the ATIP Office.

The ATIP Office also made efforts to raise awareness using internal communications tools. During the reporting period, the ATIP section of Elections Canada's intranet site was fundamentally restructured, updated and aligned with the Information Management section. This improved its usefulness for employees as a reference tool and learning resource on how to respond to access to information requests and manage personal information. The ATIP Office also contributed regularly to Elections Canada's monthly internal newsletter.

2.2   Institutional Access to Information Policies and Procedures

No new institution-specific policies or procedures were implemented in this fiscal year.

During the fall of 2011, Elections Canada began publishing online summaries of all completed, formal access to information requests in order to improve transparency. This became a Treasury Board requirement in January 2012. By proactively disclosing government information this way, Canadians and Parliament are better able to hold the government and public sector officials to account. Publishing summaries also helps individuals make informal requests for access to previously released documents. In 2012–2013, the first full year in which summaries were published, the ATIP Office released 129 packages informally, up from 42 in the previous year.