Trudeau bill would make government files open by 'default'

Justin Trudeau. Chris Wattie/Reuters

Justin Trudeau. Chris Wattie/Reuters

Jessica Hume, National Bureau

, Last Updated: 2:18 PM ET

OTTAWA — Justin Trudeau prepared to table a private member's bill Wednesday that would make government information open to the public by default.

Trudeau, who's been trying to cast himself as the federal party leader most interested in transparency, said Canada's access to information process is "stuck in the '80s."

"So when civil servants are unsure, the default is to make (the information) transparent," he said, adding that he believes the Information Commissioner's mandate needs to be expanded to enforce the rules, not just act as ombudsman.

"If the commissioner can direct civil servants to (produce) information, this would significantly strengthen our access-to-information laws."

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