Privacy rights in Saskatchewan lag rest of West, report says
Saskatchewan's Information and Privacy Commissioner says this province is lagging behind its neighbours in Western Canada in both privacy and access to information matters.
Gary Dickson released his final annual report Monday. His second five-year term as information and privacy commissioner ends April 27, 2014.
In his report, Dickson says when it comes to access and privacy, "Saskatchewan is still a have-not province."
"Saskatchewan residents do not have the same information rights that our neighbours in British Columbia and Alberta probably take for granted," Dickson said Monday, highlighting the situation of a Saskatchewan man who's been fighting for more than six years to see information about himself.
Among the privacy cases that highlighted problems in the system was that of a health employee who found out co-workers had been snooping using hospital computers.
Dickson also repeated his call for an upgrade to Saskatchewan's legislation on privacy, to close a loophole affecting employees in the private sector.
He said people who call his office, looking to learn more about their privacy rights in the workplace, are surprised the legislation only covers the government.
"They are astonished - to a man or woman - when we tell them that you happen to live in a province where there is no legislated privacy protection for employees working in the private sector," he said.
Dickson also said he'd like to see administrative responsibility for privacy and access cases taken away from the Ministry of Justice, citing concerns that the ministry takes an adversarial role.
Another ministry might be better suited to promoting citizens' access and privacy rights, he said.