Information Commissioner Delivers PATI Presentation to the Sandys Rotary Club

Commissioner Gutierrez recently gave her third PATI presentation to the Sandys Rotary Club since 2016. Rotary members enjoyed an interactive discussion with the Commissioner and examined real examples of the impact of PATI rights across our community.

Commissioner Gutierrez highlighted three significant impacts of the PATI Act. First, she spoke about how the use of the PATI Act has changed the relationship between those who govern and those who are governed by leveling the playing field between them. More Bermudians and residents are empowered with information when participating in formal or informal discussions on upcoming policy decisions and spending. When members of the public face resistance or hesitation trying to get information that may be relevant for their own lives, families or businesses, Bermudians and residents are also able to remind public authority employees of their PATI rights. Sometimes a reminder of PATI rights is sufficient to have their information needs addressed.

Second, Commissioner Gutierrez discussed some of the significant disclosures that have been made under the PATI Act over the years. Much of the information received under these disclosures has changed how public services are delivered or placed important information in the public domain, improving the accountability and transparency of public decision making and spending. The Commissioner touched upon the disclosure of salary scales, restaurant inspection ratings, daycare and childcare facility inspections and licensing records, the business review for Sandys 360, public contract details, the schedules to the airport redevelopment contract and more.

Finally, the Commissioner discussed with the Sandys Rotarians the intangible impact that the use of the PATI Act has on improving public decision making at all levels. Because of the impact of PATI, public authorities are aware that the public is paying attention. In many situations, this means that decision makers try to make sure that their reasoning is documented and their processes are sound in case they need to respond to a related PATI request in the future.

Shawn Lekki of the Sandys Rotary Club shared the following with Commissioner Gutierrez:

“Your expertise and knowledge on the impact of the PATI Act and the right to know and willingness to discuss how it has changed the relationship between the public and government and other public authorities, was both inspiring and enlightening for our members. Your ability to engage the audience and deliver the content in such a captivating manner demonstrated your dedication to your field and your commitment to sharing valuable insights. The depth of information you provided has left a lasting impact on our attendees, and we have received nothing but positive feedback from those who were fortunate enough to listen to you.”

If your organization would like to arrange a PATI presentation for your team or community group, please contact the ICO’s Project Officer, Ms. Sheena Bassett, at info@ico.bm.

Access Bermuda cybersecurity Decisions disclosures emails ICO Information management PATI public Records Requests Rights transparency