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Access to Information and Privacy Secretariat

The Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) Secretariat ensures that the department's responsibilities under the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act are met.

This includes the processing of requests for information and ensuring the protection and appropriate use of personal information.

The ATIP Secretariat serves as the centre of expertise. We deal directly with the public and assist program staff in their roles and responsibilities as public servants.

Access to information

All Canadian citizens and residents of Canada have the right to request records under the control of government institutions. Records include letters, memos, reports, photographs, films, microforms, plans, drawings, diagrams, maps, sound and video recordings and machine-readable or computer files.

The underlying principles of the Access to Information Act are that:

  • government information should be available to the public;
  • necessary exceptions to this right of access should be limited and specific; and
  • decisions on the disclosure of information can be reviewed by the Office of the Information Commissioner or the Federal Court, bodies independent of government.

Access to information rights and responsibilities are governed by the:

Request summaries

The public can review ATI information and make informal requests for copies of the records at the Open Government portal. All DFO ATI summaries have been consolidated and published in this central location since April 1, 2015.

Briefing notes

DFO/CCG of briefing note titles and numbers are available on the Open Government portal. The titles and numbers correspond to briefing notes and memoranda that were prepared for the Minister and Deputy Ministers and received by their respective offices.

The lists are generated at the end of each month. Some information is severed for privacy, confidentiality or security. Briefing documents on issues surrounding human resources and Cabinet confidences are generally not included in the list of briefing note titles and numbers.

You can obtain a copy of the briefing document by completing an Access to Information Request for the document.


Canadian citizens and people present in Canada have the right to access their personal information held by the federal government. They're also protected from unauthorized disclosure of their personal information.

The way departments can collect, use, store, disclose and dispose of personal information is governed by the:

Duty to assist

While you're requesting privacy or information reports, you can expect that we'll:

  • offer reasonable assistance
  • process your request without regard to your identity
  • apply only limited and specific exemptions to the requested records
  • inform you without undue delay if your request needs to be clarified
  • make every reasonable effort to locate and retrieve the requested records

It's our duty to provide the public with:

  • information on:
    • the Access to Information Act
    • the processing of your request
    • your right to complain to the Information Commissioner of Canada
  • accurate and complete responses
  • timely access to the requested information
  • records in the format and official language requested, as appropriate
  • an appropriate location within the government institution to examine the requested information

Contact us

Access to Information and Privacy Secretariat
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
200 Kent St.
Ottawa, ON K1A 0E6

Phone: 613-993-3115

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