24 June 2013

SAHA welcomes new AVI volunteer

SAHA is pleased to introduce a new member of the Freedom of Information Programme (FOIP) team, Kathryn Johnson. Kathryn has joined SAHA through Australian Volunteers International (AVI) to support and develop FOIP's legal advocacy and training work over the next 18 months.

Director of SAHA, Catherine Kennedy, has welcomed the continued relationship with Australian Volunteers International (AVI):

“For over a decade now, AVI has provided SAHA with access to a wealth of legal expertise to promote the constitutional right of access to information in South Africa in line with international better practice.

It has been through the considerable skills and experience of past AVI volunteers that SAHA has been able to develop and expand a comprehensive training programme and resources enabling communities and civil society organisations to use the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) to access records that can then be used to assert and defend other key rights, such as the right to housing, the right to a clean environment, the right to equality before the law for LGBTI persons living in South Africa.

This year, with Kathryn's support,  we hope to be helping communities and organisations to access information to forward quality basic education in South Africa, as well as continuing to monitor legislation developments in relation to the Secrecy Bill, the Spy Bill and the Privacy Bill to ensure that the right of access to information is strengthened, rather than undermined, in our country." 

Kathryn Johnson, a senior administrative law lawyer, holds a BEc/LLB from the Australian National University.  She has worked in both private and government practice since 1994.  Kathryn is currently on leave from her role as the General Counsel for the Australian Government Department of Human Services, which she has held since 2006.  Kathryn has considerable experience in information law, including early implementation of current Freedom of Information law reforms in Australia, and the provision of policy comment and submissions in relation to recent privacy and secrecy reviews in Australia.

To learn more about SAHA's Freedom of Information Programme, please visit the FOIP website.

Please contact the FOIP team for more information.