On the first of January every year, history hits the headlines. That’s when the National Archives of Australia, or NAA, releases the most recent batch of cabinet records, documenting discussions at the highest level of government. This year, records from 1994 and 1995 were made available for the first time. Among other things, we learnt that prime minister Paul Keating’s government didn’t tackle climate change with great gusto.
But what about the files we’re not allowed to see? During 2017 at least 1140 government files were withheld from the public. Amid the celebrations each year, we should perhaps take time to investigate the limits of access.