FOIA works best when everyone assumes that requests are made in good faith, as a means for journalists, activists and average citizens alike to contribute in a meaningful way to oversight of the their government. This week, we take a look at a few stories that undermine that assumption of good faith, both among government officials and in the public eye.
In trying to learn more about how police respond to demonstrations, MuckRock has been consistently met with exemptions and pushback, often with entire records releases being denied. Let us curate the five worst examples of this we have come across in the last few months.
In a democracy, the power of the people comes from the ability to hold their government accountable. We’re launching a project to provide a comprehensive list of FOIA resources that will help you to prepare, participate, and investigate protests. Today, we’ll be looking at what to look out for during a protest.
We’ve sent requests to police departments around the country for their incident reports, threat assessments, and any other records we can get surrounding the law enforcement response to the protests surging through American cities. While most of our requests are still processing, what we have received illustrates how remarkably unprepared some law enforcement was for demonstrations of this scope.