Global RTI Ratings (www.rti-rating.org) are done through measuring the strength of a country’s RTI legislation on 60 indicators, distributed across 7 major categories. One of those categories is named Promotional Measures.
The category Promotional Measures holds an important set of indicators. These indicators effectively measure the true commitment of the state to making RTI procedures effective and accessible to the public. The fundamental point of RTI should be that people want to use it, and that the state makes it easy for people to use it, thus actively encouraging its use. It’s the Promotional Measures indicators which examine this element of RTI.
For example, under the Promotional Measures category, we can see that Sri Lanka’s RTI legislation acknowledges these requirements, among others:
- For every government institution to appoint a special RTI officer/s (“Public authorities are required to appoint dedicated officials — information officers — or units with a responsibility for ensuring that they comply with their information disclosure obligations”);
- For the establishment of a central body to overlook and promote the use of RTI (“A central body, such as an information commission(er) or government department, is given overall responsibility for promoting the right to information”)
- The state is legally responsible for raising awareness among the public about RTI (“Public awareness-raising efforts (e.g. producing a guide for the public or introducing RTI awareness into schools) are required to be undertaken by law”).
Under Promotional Measures, there are also other indicators which help the state to adhere to minimum expected standards at all times.