USRTK testifies at U.S. Senate hearing on transparency and accountability

Print Email Share Tweet LinkedIn WhatsApp Reddit Telegram

On March 20, 2024, our executive director, Gary Ruskin, testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs at a hearing about “Reforming Federal Records Management to Improve Transparency and Accountability.” You can read his testimony here.

Ruskin testified about U.S. Right to Know’s of high-risk virological research and the origins of COVID-19, and described our work as a “test case of citizens’ access to government records.” As part of our investigation, we have filed more than 150 public records requests, including 97 Freedom of Information Act requests, seeking thousands of pages of relevant federal records. With the information we gathered, we’ve written more than 70 news articles about the origins of Covid 19 and risky virological research

But in many cases, federal agencies did not comply with public records laws, or obstructed those laws – prompting us to file 25 FOIA lawsuits. This is a sign that our public records processes are failing the public, Ruskin said. 

He shared evidence that government staff obstructed public records laws in numerous ways, delayed production of records, made egregious redactions, and other failings that impede the public’s right to know.

You can watch the hearing at this link.

To top