Access to Government Information

image003ACCESS TO GOVERNMENT INFORMATION: USING FOIA AND STATE FOI LAWS IN SUPPORT OF LAW AND POLICY ADVOCACY | April 17, 2017 | 12:00p – 1:00 |Milstein East C, Wasserstein Hall, Harvard Law School | The federal Freedom of Information Act and its state law analogs can be powerful tools for law and policy advocates in a wide range of fields. Understanding how to navigate freedom of information laws can be key to understanding facts and decision-making processes in virtually any substantive arena of government action — from environmental to education to energy, housing to health care to human rights, commerce to copyright to civil liberties. Developing expertise with the practical aspects of pursuing successful freedom of information requests can ensure advocates use these tools effectively and efficiently. This panel discussion will offer an introduction to freedom of information law and practice. Panelists Michael Morisy (cofounder of MuckRock, a non-profit, collaborative news site that provides a repository for government materials and information on how to file FOIA requests), Toby Merrill (Clinical Instructor in the Predatory Lending Practice and Director of the Project on Predatory Student Lending at HLS), and Amanda Savage (Attorney and Fellow, Project on Predatory Student Lending at HLS) will address their experiences using freedom of information laws effectively and offer a roadmap for those seeking to employ freedom of information requests in support of their work. Mason Kortz, a clinical instructional fellow at the Harvard Law School Cyberlaw Clinic, will moderate the event. The event is sponsored by the Harvard Women’s Law Association, the Cyberlaw Clinic, and the Harvard Law School Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs. Lunch will be served — please rsvp.

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