SFHA and GWSF defend Freedom of Information position

SFHA GWSFThe Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA) and the Glasgow and West of Scotland Forum of Housing Associations (GWSF) have responded to claims that they are resistant to housing associations being included within Freedom of Information (FOI) legislation.

In a blog on Scottish Housing News last week, the Chris Bartter from the Campaign for Freedom of Information in Scotland argued that extending the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act to housing associations is the only way to ensure full transparency.

The blog was written in response to recent SFHA and GWSF guidance on openness and transparency which, according to Bartter, was evidence of housing associations “continuing their resistance to inclusion under the FOI umbrella”.

However the housing bodies said the guidance does not specifically express their position on FOI and that they will further discuss with members before contributing to a Scottish Government consultation on the issue.

They told Scottish Housing News: “In response to the blog from the Campaign For Freedom of Information in Scotland (SHN 22 September), SFHA and GWSF wish to highlight that in relation to the Model Publication Framework recently issued to members, neither the document itself nor the accompanying news release made any statement for or against housing associations becoming subject to the Freedom of Information provisions.

“Both organisations will be liaising with members in the run up to, and during, the forthcoming Scottish Government consultation and responding in accordance with members’ views.”

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