What’s the point of Sunshine Week?
Sunshine Week, launched in 2005 by the American Society of News Editors, is a national initiative to promote the importance of open government and freedom of information. Participants include media, civic groups, libraries, nonprofits, schools and others interested in the public’s right to know.
In the past year, media and citizens across Wisconsin have fought to ensure public access to meetings and records. These battles, for example, have been waged in Minocqua, in Dane County, in Milwaukee and right here in Rock County.
Here’s something that might surprise you. Reporter Frank Schultz suggests that almost every week someone in The Gazette newsroom cites provisions of our open records or open meetings law in discussions with government officials. Not all conversations, of course, are contentious.
In our editorial Tuesday, we’ll reflect on some of these cases in Wisconsin and here in our own back yard. These incidents demonstrate why journalists and the news media must stay persistent in pursuit of the truth and public disclosure.