Can you think of a secretive government agency “worthy” of IRE’s Golden Padlock Award? Investigative Reporters and Editors is now welcoming nominations for its fourth annual Golden Padlock award recognizing the most secretive government agency in the United States. You can apply here. Nominations should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org including the name of the government department or individual along with reasons and/or media coverage and documents detailing the intransigence. Entries must be submitted to IRE by April 30.
Here are some examples of past recipients and their deeds:
- The Massachusetts State Police won the 2015 Golden Padlock for habitually going to extraordinary lengths to thwart public records requests, protect law enforcement officers and public officials who violate the law, and block efforts to scrutinize how the department performs its duties.
- The U.S. Navy FOIA office for its commitment to keep documents and images from a navy yard massacre from public view, and
- The governors of Oklahoma and Missouri for their dedication to secrecy around execution records.
- The U.S. Border Patrol won the inaugural Golden Padlock award in 2013 for refusing to make public the details of use-of-force incidents involving its agents.
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