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NO2ID Newsletter No.118 5 March 2009

*Contacting us:* Call or email the office – 020-7793-4005 or (office@no2id.net).

+ STOP CLAUSE 152 +

Clause 152 of the Coroners and Justice Bill [1] – currently being debated by Parliament – would allow any Minister by order to take any information gathered for one purpose from anywhere, and use it for any other purpose.

An ‘Information Sharing Order’, as defined in Clause 152, would permit your information to be trafficked and abused, not only all across government and the public sector – it would also reach into the private sector. And it would even allow transfer of information across international borders.

Your information, your family’s information, arbitrarily used without your consent or even knowledge. The very reverse of ‘Data Protection’.

If you care about fundamental rights and freedoms, privacy and confidentiality, the time to act is NOW.

Please write to your MP – you can do this at www.WriteToThem.com – and tell him or her that you REFUSE CONSENT to having your information shared under any ‘Information Sharing Order’, and ask him or her to vote to have Clause 152 removed entirely from the Coroners and Justice Bill.

(Refusing your consent is the absolutely critical bit – we know that some MPs have already had over 100 constituents telling them this, which is the way we can all apply pressure.)

Please write to your MP now – AND TELL OTHERS. Friends, family, colleagues, workmates. Spread the word. A ‘Stop Clause 152!’ facebook group has also been set up to help publicise the issue:

www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=54487688497

If you have already written to your MP (thank you!) then why not write a letter to your local paper, alerting readers to the powers in Clause 152 and how privacy will be abolished if it becomes law. All it takes is 10 minutes and a stamp.

If we act now, we can stop this. If we don’t, another fundamental building block of privacy and trust will be lost.

It’s up to us.

— References

1) Guy Herbert, NO2ID’s General Secretary, prepared a briefing for Parliamentarians that explains in detail why this is such a deceptive and dangerous piece of legislation:
www.no2id.net/IDSchemes/2009-01-22
-coroners-and-justice-bill-briefing.pdf

What just happened?

+ Thanks to all Modern Liberty volunteers +

Many thanks to all those who helped out at both the Modern Liberty Convention in London and the satellite events around the country. It was a fantastic day and hopefully great things will come of it.

+ Clause 152 – Joint Letter to Jack Straw +

Privacy International and other privacy and civil liberties groups including NO2ID have signed a joint letter to Jack Straw with regards to Clause 152 of the Coroners and Justice Bill. The letter sets out some of the groups’ concerns and asks Straw to remove clause 152 in its entirety. On the data sharing power in Clause 152 the letter says: “This new power is without precedent, and carries substantial implications for data protection and for the rights of individuals.” Read the letter at (www.privacyinternational.org/article.shtml?cmd[347]=x-347-563710)

+ Convention on Modern Liberty +

On Saturday 28th February the Convention on Modern Liberty brought together civil liberties groups, unions, campaigners and individuals with shared concerns about the state of freedoms in the UK. Phillip Pullman warned the London Convention: “A nation whose laws express fear and suspicion cannot sustain delight for very long; joy does not flourish in the garden of anxiety”. Lord Bingham said of the day: “A candle may today be lit or re-lit in Britain, which we may fervently hope shall never be put out.” See www.modernliberty.net for follow up information.

+ Two more councils pass anti-ID motions +

Worcester County Council and Wyre Forest District Council have bothed passed motions against the government’s National ID scheme. Worcester County Council voted to affiliate to the NO2ID campaign and both councils voted to “only co-operate with the national identity card scheme where to do otherwise would be unlawful.” Councillor Fran Oborski who proposed the motion in Worcester said: “This is a fundamental threat to the relationship between the citizen and the state — and these things do not work”. Details of other councils and bodies that have voted against the ID scheme can be found at www.no2id.net/resources/motions/

+ Sad loss to privacy campaigning +

Former NO2ID Portsmouth and Southsea co-ordinator Paul Vigay has died at the age of 44. Paul was a prominent programmer for the RiscOS computer operating system and a staunch campaigner for privacy and personal freedom. He was also a wild-life photographer and investigator of the crop circle phenomenon. Paul will be greatly missed and we send our sympathies to his family and friends.

+ Schools send out ContactPoint “Shielding” Letter +

Independent schools have written to parents suggesting that they write to their local authority asking to have their children “shielded” in the government’s new ContactPoint database. Kensington and Chelsea Council have also been encouraging parents to ask for shielding. ContactPoint will contain basic details about every child and young person under the age of 18. Shielding allows some of this information to be hidden. The Independent Schools Council says that the database “is an unjustified interference in the privacy of the majority of children and their carers, it will put some children at risk through data theft or loss, it will be a register of poor quality data which may create a misleading or unhelpful impression of the child, it is unlikely to facilitate early intervention”.

+ Italian MPs face fingerprint voting +

Members of the Italian parliament are concerned that an electronic fingerprinting system, due to be introduced next week, will mean they have to work harder. Italian members of parliament have been caught stretching across voting terminals to vote for absent members as well as themselves – a practise that the fingerprint system is designed to stop. It makes you wonder whether if UK MPs were fast-tracked on to the ID scheme and required to clock on and off using their cards every time they entered and left the Commons how long it would be before ID cards would be re-abolished.

What’s next?

*+ UK Tour of Anti-ID play +*
The UK tour of the play ‘Another Paradise’ starts on Thursday 12th March. The play asks “What will it actually mean if all our personal information is at the fingertips of a civil servant … or a hacker? Does that violate our individuality – who we are, what we are?”. The tour will visit Manchester, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Stockton-on-Tees, Leeds, Plymouth, Coventry and London Details at
www.kalitheatre.co.uk/whatson/Another_Paradise.htm

+ LOCAL GROUPS NEWS +

To see if there’s a group in your area check our list at www.no2id.net/localGroups/ Or, if you’re interested in starting a group yourself, please contact Matty on local.groups@no2id.net to discuss what’s involved and what we have in place to support coordinators and their groups.

_*+ Belfast +*_

*Modern Liberty satellite Convention* Reports on the Belfast event can be found at
(www.modernliberty.net/satellite-conventions/belfast).

_*+ Bolton +*_

*+ 13th March – Database State Talk + * Friday, 13th March 7pm-9pm at Bolton Socialist Club on Wood Street, Bolton. Dave Page, North-West co-ordinator for NO2ID will be speaking about the Database State.

_*+ Bournemouth +*_

At the invitation of the Chairman, Peter and Richard Lucas of Bournemouth NO2ID manned a stall at the Bournemouth East AGM of the UK Independence Party. A number of party members signed the petition against ID cards, with one new member being signed up and a total of £25 raised for the cause. Peter remarked: “it was a very positive step forward for our local group that we have been able to foster a good relationship with a local political party and the interest shown by local UKIP members in helping to stop the government’s totalitarian ID cards scheme was substantial. I am hopeful that our two organisations will be able to continue to work together to promote the values of freedom and liberty we all hold so dear”.

_*+ Bristol +*_

*Bristol Modern Liberty satellite Convention Report* On Saturday, 28th February the Bristol satellite Convention on Modern Liberty was held by NO2ID Bristol in conjunction with An Adventure in Technology. The day featured live video feeds (after some initial technical hitches) and animated debates and workshop sessions. Following the afternoon campaigning workshop an action list has been posted up (www.no-cctv.org.uk/modernliberty). Also, a mailing list has been set up to continue discussion begun at the event and for issues relating to Modern Liberty at
mailmanlist.net/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/modernliberty_bristol

A video of the Politicians Panel Discussion can be found at www.modernliberty.net/streaming-video (under Bristol).

More reports will be posted at www.modernliberty.net/satellite-conventions/bristol

_*+ Cambridge +*_

*Cambridge satellite Convention on Modern Liberty Report* Cambridge NO2ID helped organise a very successful satellite event as part of the national Convention on Modern Liberty on Saturday 28th February. In addition to watching the opening and closing plenaries in London via live video link, Cambridge attendees participated in 4 local panels, including one on the Database State, and a debate on the motion “This House believes that its civil liberties are under grave threat”. Video and audio recording of the Cambridge sessions are being posted as they become available at:
www.modernliberty.net/satellite-conventions/cambridge

*+ 7th March – NO2ID Cambridge Stall – CANCELLED +*
There now won’t be a NO2ID stall on Saturday 7th March in Cambridge.

*+ 28th March – NO2ID Cambridge Stall +*
Saturday, 28th March at 10am in the usual spot outside Cambridge Guildhall. Location Map: (www.aardvarkmap.net/mape/T5LZATLS). Please contact Alex on 07811 917096 if you’d like to help.

_*+ Camden and Islington +*_

*+ 7th April – NO2ID Camden & Islington Meeting (1st Tuesday of month) +*
Tuesday, 7th April 8pm at The Castle, 54 Pentonville Road. For more info email camden@no2id.net or join the mailing list at: (www.no2id.net/mailman/listinfo/no2id.camden). All welcome.

_*+ Canterbury +*_

*+ 5th March – Canterbury NO2ID Meeting +*
Thursday, 5th March 7.30pm at the Hobgoblin on Canterbury High St. Main agenda items are making final arrangements for our stall on the 14th, planning a second NO2ID benefit gig for the Spring and working on ideas for other events for the spring and summer.

*+ 14th March – Canterbury NO2ID Stall +*
Saturday, 14th March 10am til 1pm on Canterbury High St

For more information on either event, if you would like a NO2ID presence at any local events, or if you would like to go on our local mailing list please e-mail canterbury@no2id.net or phone Caz on 07792 567087.

_*+ Cardiff +*_

*Cardiff satellite Convention on Modern Liberty* Reports on the Cardiff Convention will be posted at www.modernliberty.net/satellite-conventions/cardiff

_*+ Cheltenham +*_

We have a new Cheltenham group. They are just in the process of getting started so please email the coordinator Lynda Warren on cheltenham@no2id.net if you’d like to be involved.

Please also join the Cheltenham mailing list on:
lists.no2id.net/mailman/listinfo/no2id.cheltenham

_*+ Deptford+ *_

*+ 8th March – Deptford NO2ID Meeting (2nd Sunday of month) +*
Sunday, 8th March 7.30pm at the Royal Albert pub, New Cross Road, SE8.

To stay up to date join the Deptford NO2ID mailing list on: hlists.no2id.net/mailman/listinfo/no2id.deptford

_*+ Dorking +*_

A couple of street stalls in nearby Crawley in February gained us 270 signatures on the anti-ID Card petition. New street stalls are planned for Kingston and Guildford as well as getting back to Dorking High Street. Monthly get togethers as always at the Lincoln Arms near Dorking mainline station every first Tuesday of the month at 7.30pm…all welcome, it goes without saying.

_*+ Edinburgh +

*_*MSP claims National Identity Register could be useful*
Bill Aitken, Conservative MSP, addressed a meeting of Edinburgh NO2ID on 24 February. He was against ID cards on principle and in particular on grounds of cost and lack of clear objectives or benefits. He did however see advantages of databases in certain cases such as medical emergencies [Ed: The BMA disagrees!]. Three days later the Home Office was to have held another of their regional ‘consultation’ meetings in Edinburgh but it was postponed after the organisers learned that the local NO2ID group planned to demonstrate outside the hotel. The demonstration went ahead nevertheless and was covered in the local press. This time the police simply watched and no-one was arrested.

*Saturdays 1pm – 3pm – NO2ID Edinburgh street stall*
Every week, weather permitting, you will find our campaigning stall at the east end of Princes Street, opposite the Balmoral Hotel. Do drop by for a chat. New volunteers – please contact John (edinburgh@no2id.net), and for more group information see www.no2id-scotland.net/edinburgh/

_*+ Epsom +*_

In January, Epsom and Ewell MP Chris Grayling became Shadow Home Secretary. This means he is in line to become Home Secretary if the Conservatives win the next election. Epsom NO2ID group is potentially THE MOST IMPORTANT in the country. But we need a coordinator to get things moving with street stalls and public meetings, and Chris Grayling must be invited to all of your events. This is a real chance to effect the politics of the next 10 years…a grateful nation will thank you.

If anyone wants to get involved in the Epsom area, please email or phone NO2ID South East Regional Coordinator Geoff Cox on south.east@no2id.net or call 01306 631377.

_*+ Glasgow +*_

*Glasgow satellite Convention on Modern Liberty *
Reports on the Glasgow convention will be posted at
www.modernliberty.net/satellite-conventions/glasgow*
*

_*+ Great Missenden +*_

*+ 18th March – NO2ID Great Missenden Meeting +*
Wednesday, 18th March 7.30 pm, at the White Hill Centre, Whitehill Road, Chesham. All welcome.

If you are interested in the work of the Great Missenden group, please join their mailing list on: lists.no2id.net/mailman/listinfo/no2id.great-missenden

_*+ Leeds +*_

*+ 14th March – Leeds NO2ID ‘Taking Liberties’ Film Showing +*
Saturday, 14th March at 3.30pm at the Victoria Hotel (near Millenium square) – Leeds NO2ID will be holding a showing of ‘Taking Liberties’. Entry is free, donations are welcome but not expected. The exact address is 28 Great George St, Leeds, LS1 3BB

*+ 14th March – Leeds NO2ID Street Stall +*
Saturday, 14th March we will be holding a stall at the usual place, Briggate more or less opposite Harvey Nics.

For more information on either contact leeds@no2id.net

_*+ Manchester +*_

*Manchester satellite Convention on Modern Liberty* On Saturday 28th February Manchester NO2ID organised a breakout convention alongside the main event in London. For reports and content linked to the Manchester event see
www.modernliberty.net/satellite-conventions/manchester

*+ 13th March – Database State Talk + *(see Bolton above)

*+ 14th March – Manchester NO2ID Street Stall +*
Saturday, 14th March 2pm – 4pm in St. Ann’s Square to raise awareness among the public and engage people in discussion about the National Identity Register. We’ll be collecting signatures for the NO2ID petition to keep people in touch with the campaign. We’ll meet in the square itself at 2pm to set up shop; feel free to join us to lend a hand or just chat. You don’t need any experience or equipment, just a bit of time to spare and a friendly smile!

*+ 18th March – Manchester NO2ID Meeting +*
Wednesday, 18th March 7pm in the Town Hall Tavern, Tib Lane, Manchester. Sadly, this venue is not wheelchair-accessible; please contact us if you have accessibility needs (e-mail us on manchester@no2id.net or call us on 07982 814441). At our monthly meetings we discuss the state of the NO2ID campaign, what we’ve been up to recently and where we’re going in future. Everyone is welcome, newcomer or not, curious or committed. See minutes of our previous meetings at manchester.no2id.net/taxonomy/term/5

_*+ Norwich +*_

*+ 7th March – Norwich NO2ID Street Stall +*
Saturday, 7th March from 1pm until 3pm at The Haymarket on Gentleman’s Walk. Anybody is welcome to attend, so come along to spread the word and try to enlist more people to the cause!

*+ 10th March – Norwich NO2ID Meeting +*
Tuesday, 10th March at 7pm at the function room of The Gardeners Arms (formerly The Murderers Arms) on Timber Hill. The room is wheelchair accessible and parking can be found nearby at The Castle Mall or Rouen Road car park.

If you are interested in the work of the Norwich group, please join their mailing list on: www.no2id.net/mailman/listinfo/no2id.norwich

_*+ Oxford +*_

*+ 5th March – Oxford NO2ID Meeting +*
Thursday, 5th March from 8pm at the Mitre on Oxford’s High Street.

See the website for more: no2id-oxford.org.uk/

_*+ Shrewsbury +*_

*+ 16th March – Shrewsbury NO2ID “dining club” (3rd Monday of the month) +*
Monday, 16th March – our regular “dining club” is meeting at about 7.15pm somewhere in the town centre. Do join us for a meal, or just come along for a drink. We need to book the table a few days in advance, so contact Rob Findlay on shrewsbury@no2id.net (or 07973 848910) if you’d like to come along.

_*+ Worcester +*_

*Council motions passed* Worcester County Council and Wyre Forest both passed motions against the National ID scheme (see the ‘What Just Happened’ section above). _* *_ *+ 11th March – Worcester NO2ID Meeting (2nd Wednesday of month) +*
Wednesday, 11th March 8pm at The Portobello Inn, St Johns, Worcester (map available from our website @ www.no2id-worcester.org.uk/meetings). Look out for the NO2ID Logo to spot us if you have not been before. Its an open door policy. Anyone can come along regardless of your stance, experience or awareness on the issues regarding or related to the National Identity Scheme. Why not bring a friend and join us for some drinks!

Stay tuned for the details of the meeting’s outcome on our website blog @ www.no2id-worcester.org.uk/blog

_*+ York +*_

*+ 11th March – NO2ID York 1st Meeting +*
Wednesday, 11th March from 7.30pm in the ‘Black Swan’, Peasholme Green. The first evening meeting of the York group. If you can’t make that, we will be doing a joint stall with the Selby group on Saturday 7th March in Parliament St. (by the toilets!) from around 10.30 am and it would be good to see you there. Contact york@no2id.net for more details.

“ID” in the news

*+ Border checks ‘may discriminate’ – BBC News Online 4/3/09 +*
Checks on people crossing the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic may lead to discrimination, the Human Rights Commission has warned. news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/7922993.stm * + Government’s NHS patient data sharing plans torn apart by professional bodies – Computer World 4/3/09 +*
The British Medical Association and seven other healthcare organisations have launched a scathing attack on plans to share NHS patient records across government departments and third party businesses.
www.computerworlduk.com/management/government-law/
public-sector/news/index.cfm?newsid=13650

*+ Three months on, you still can’t get off the DNA database – The Register 2/3/09 +*
Almost three months on from the unanimous ruling by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) against the UK’s mass retention of DNA of innocent people, the situation has turned worse. Although eventually the UK should become compliant with the ruling, police forces are adopting a wait and see attitude, while Jacqui Smith is pushing back any response.
www.theregister.co.uk/2009/03/02/dna_dbase_stalling/

*+ Last call for UK liberties – The Register 2/3/09 +*
On Saturday 28 February, several hundred activists and interested citizens got together to issue a rallying cry to all concerned by the government’s ever increasing encroachment on our traditional civil liberties.
www.theregister.co.uk/2009/03/02/convention_liberty/

*+ ID cards database breached by nosey council staff – Computer Weekly 24/2/09 +*
Staff at 30 local authorities have been responsible for “serious security breaches” in the government database that will form the core of the national ID cards programme.
www.computerweekly.com/235004.htm

*+ Government spent £140,000 to keep ID card review secret – Computer Weekly 23/2/09 +*
The Office of Government Commerce has spent at least £140,000 on legal fees to keep secret two early Gateway reviews on the national ID cards scheme.
www.computerweekly.com/Articles/2009/02/23/234967/govern
ment-spents-140000-to-keep-id-card-review-secret.htm

*+ Cost fears that may put solicitors off ID cards – Law Gazette 12/2/09 +*
The Home Office wants lawyers to be ‘early adopters’ of ID equipment. According to minister Meg Hillier, ‘for legal transactions it might well be worthwhile [solicitors] having a reading machine to quickly verify ID’. There are many civil liberty arguments against the scheme. But are there any practical benefits to solicitors which outweigh these considerations?
www.lawgazette.co.uk/opinion/comment/cost-fears-may-put-solicitors-id-cards

(Please send me any items of interest you encounter – Editor(newsletter@no2id.net) )

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Publication details: © NO2ID 2009 – This document may be freely redistributed in one-to-one communications or physical copies as long as it is reproduced in its entirety including this notice. It may not be mass-mailed without the prior permission of NO2ID.

NO2ID, Box 412, 19-21 Crawford Street, LONDON W1H 1PJ

  
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