Media organizations ask the California Supreme Court to hear Californians Aware and Voice of OC’s case

From Voice of OC: The Los Angeles Times, the corporate parent of the Orange County Register and the 800-member California Newspaper Publishers Association are urging the state Supreme Court to overturn a gag order obtained by Orange County that allows it to keep documents secret that show what top officials knew about alleged sexual abuse of female workers.

In addition, the Virginia–based Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, which is led by reporters and editors from the nation’s largest print and broadcast organizations, is supporting the appeal filed at the state Supreme Court in September by Voice of OC and open-government advocate Californians Aware.

“It’s huge,” said Voice of OC attorney Kelly A. Aviles of the corporate, CNPA and national news organization support. “It's [the case] really garnered national attention,” said Aviles, who is also CalAware’s vice president for open government compliance. “I’m really glad the heavy hitters are speaking up and trying to get this resolved before it causes anyone else any problems.”


At issue is an unusual series of rulings — “more dangerous” than a gag order, according to Aviles — that were requested by county officials and issued by Orange County Superior Court judges that sealed all county records involving alleged sexual harassment by former county Public Works executive Carlos Bustamante.

Visit Voice of OC for more.

The Californians Aware is a member of NFOIC. –eds