Being open and accountable
Public administration should be transparent and information should be handled as openly as the law allows. Public bodies should give people information and, if appropriate, advice that is clear, accurate, complete, relevant and timely.
Public bodies should be open and truthful when accounting for their decisions and actions. They should state their criteria for decision making and give reasons for their decisions.
Public bodies should handle and process information properly and appropriately in line with the law. So while their policies and procedures should be transparent, public bodies should, as the law requires, also respect the privacy of personal and confidential information.
Public bodies should create and maintain reliable and usable records as evidence of their activities. They should manage records in line with recognised standards to ensure that they can be retrieved and that they are kept for as long as there is a statutory duty or business need.
Public bodies should take responsibility for the actions of their staff.