As someone who occasionally dips into government records for information, I’ve gotten used to journalists and nonprofits being less than helpful and protecting their sources. But I’m pleasantly surprised to see that the ACLU, the Ohio Newspaper Association and other Ohio advocacy groups are bucking the trend by sharing what they know, putting together an open public workshop on muckraking in Ohio. During Sunshine Week 2009 (which at the national level seems reduced to a public service announcement and a one-page comic), these groups will be holding a practical panel session to talk about open meetings and open records laws in the state of Ohio, strategies for the use of public records, and resources to battle recalcitrant politicians who want to keep public information private.
It’s happening Wednesday, March 18, at 3:00 pm in the Metropolitan Library auditorium at 96 South Grant Avenue in Columbus… and if that’s not in your neck of the woods, step around the eventless national Sunshine Week site and do your own search for local events… like an Open Government discussion at the Center for American Progress in Washington, DC on March 20, or the Freedom of Information Day event on March 16 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Then embrace the spirit of sunshine: share what you know.