15 May Movement Demands Access to Information Law in Spain

 Madrid 26th May – Last week the squares of Spanish cities were “taken” by the Spanish youth who are calling for “real democracy” and an end to corruption in the face of a system that they feel is failing them on the economy, welfare, and citizen representation. Citizens camped out in Madrid’s central square Puerta de Sol, fed up with the governments’ business-as-usual attitude to these problems, are taking matters into their own hands. The increasingly organised movement has this week formed a working group, “Transparency Law Now!” dedicated exclusively to campaigning for progress on the gridlocked Spanish access to information law. An access to information law was promised by the socialist government in their election manifestos of 2004 and 2008. In 2008-2009 a draft was produced which was leaked to Access Info Europe in September 2010. Access Info published this draft and held consultations with the public and experts who concluded that it fell short of international standards. When Access Info and the Spanish coalition for an access to information law, the Coalición Pro Acceso, met with minister of the presidency, Ramón Jaúregui, in March, he explained that due to the crisis the transparency law was not considered a priority. He promised however, to inform the groups within one month whether an access to information law would be presented before the end of the current mandate. Two months have now passed and a decision has not yet been taken.

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