Let the Sun Shine in: Using FOIA to Expose Government Secrets

Tuesday April 17th, 2018 at CUNY’s Graduate School of Journalism (219 W 40th St, New York, NY – 3rd Floor)

Red Cross failures in disaster relief; Alleged conflicts of interest tainting Trump’s inner circle; Mayor de Blasio donors with major City Hall sway; Delays in newborn screenings with deadly implications – all government secrets that top journalists from Politico, ProPublica, the New York Times and the Associated Press have exposed using the Freedom of Information Act. Learn how they do it so you too can become a FOIA ninja. Our all-star panel will share their experience extracting records through the Freedom of Information Act, while offering tips and strategies on how to file better FOI requests to get what you want.

The panel:

Laura Nahmias is a reporter for POLITICO New York, covering City Hall and Mayor Bill de Blasio.

Ellen Gabler is an investigative reporter with the New York Times.

Justin Elliott is a reporter with ProPublica.

Jacob Pearson is a reporter with the Associated Press.

Reporter Laura Nahmias uses FOI requests in her role with POLITICO. She dug into thousands of emails released under a FOIA request to show how a major donor to NYC Mayor de Blasio had major influence.

Ellen Gabler of The New York Times didn’t learn about FOIA until her THIRD reporting job but has used it ever since, digging into medical investigations that couldn’t be done without data or documents.

Justin Elliott of ProPublica has used FOI requests to dig into the Trump administration’s attempts to change the Census and to scrutinize the American Red Cross’ performance after major disasters.

Jake Pearson regularly uses FOI requests on a range of stories, from documenting in-custody deaths at New York City’s Rikers Island jail to peeking into federal investigations of public agencies to, most recently, discovering Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump’s private hunting preserve in upstate New York.

At a glance:

  • What: Let the Sunshine In: FOIA Tips and Strategies
  • When: Tuesday, April 17th, 2018. Reception 6:30 p.m. Talk 7:00 p.m.
  • Where: CUNY’s Graduate School of Journalism (219 W 40th St. NYC – 3rd Fl.)
  • Tickets: Free for all to attend

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