Access to Information Programme (AIP) was established on October 23, 1996 in Sofia, Bulgaria. Since then, AIP has been perseveringly following its mission to assist the exercise of the right to information. AIP has been running a permanent campaign for improving the access to information situation in Bulgaria and has been actively participating in international networks and initiatives related to the right to information.
The Goals of Access to Information Programme are:
- to assist the exercise of the right of access to information;
- to encourages the citizens’ demand for government held information through civic education in the freedom of information area;
- to advocate for enhanced transparency in the work of public institutions at central and local level.
Access to Information Programme activities:
- AIP monitors the freedom of information legislation in Bulgaria and participates in the debates for its compliance with the international standards in the area
- AIP works with an established network of journalists in 27 cities throughout the country that monitors the access to information implementation practices and gives recommendations for their improvement
- AIP prepares and performs special access to information surveys
- AIP provides consultations on cases concerning the right of access to information – in more than 4,000 cases already
- AIP provides legal help in individual cases of information seeking
- AIP raises public awareness on the right of access to information through the media, publicly expresses opinion on current problems and debates related to the access to information and its misuse at all levels
- AIP organizes workshops, seminars and conferences on access to information
- AIP holds specialized freedom of information trainings for civil servants and local administration officials, journalists, and nongovernmental organizations
- AIP prepares information materials and publications for the central and local press
- AIP maintains an Internet site with up-to-date information about the developments in the access to information area in Bulgaria and abroad
- AIP prepares and publishes handbooks on how to exercise the right of access to information, as well as publications clarifying particular aspects of the access to information legislation
- AIP issues and disseminates a monthly electronic Newsletter which contains national and international access to information related news
- AIP is an active member of the International Freedom of Information Advocates Network
Access to Information Programme is one of the founders and an active member of the Global Freedom of Information Advocates Network - FOIANet.
Since 2003, the AIP has initiated and organized the annual Right to Know Day Awards Ceremonies.