Catherine Tully of Ottawa has been appointed Nova Scotia’s new freedom of information and protection of privacy review officer.
Ms. Tully will oversee how provincial and municipal governments, school boards, universities, community colleges and hospitals protect the privacy of Nova Scotians and respond to requests for access to information.
“This is an important oversight role,” said acting Justice Minister Mark Furey. “Nova Scotians have a right to information held by government and they expect us to protect their private information. I’m very pleased we have a strong leader to fulfill this responsibility. Ms. Tully has tremendous leadership and practical experience to bring to this role.”
Ms. Tully has over 10 years of senior experience with government agencies and Crown corporations dedicated to access to information and privacy law. She’s been the assistant information and privacy commissioner for British Columbia and, most recently, was the director of privacy and access to information for Canada Post. Although she spent much of her work and educational career in Ontario and British Columbia, Ms. Tully completed a master’s degree in international law and human rights at Dalhousie University.
“I look forward to working with public bodies and health custodians to help them find practical solutions to the tough access and privacy issues,” said Ms. Tully. “For citizens, I will continue the work of ensuring that Nova Scotians have meaningful access to government information and real protection of their personal information.
“I am honoured by this appointment and look forward to my return to Nova Scotia to tackle the opportunities and challenges of review officer.”
The review officer is an independent ombudsman appointed by the Governor in Council for a term of five to seven years. The review officer accepts appeals from people and organizations who are not satisfied with the response they received from provincial government departments, most provincial agencies, boards and commissions, municipal government organizations and public bodies including community colleges, hospitals, universities, and school boards.
The review officer may make recommendations to the public body. The public body must respond in writing to the report. If the applicant, or a third party, is not satisfied with the outcome of a review, an appeal may be made to the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia.
Ms. Tully will begin Sept. 8.