Gracie Mae Bradley of Liberty writes that “People ceaselessly ask why objections to proposed ID methods in the United Kingdom have traditionally been so strident when such schemes are popular in mainland Europe” (, 6 September). Alas, she does now not resolution this query. Countries with more potent civil liberties traditions and constitutional protections of privateness haven’t any issues of ID playing cards. The UK state has maximum folks registered on databases by the use of nationwide insurance coverage, NHS numbers or riding licences. We willingly give up our privateness to personal overseas corporations once we use cell phones or the web.
We won’t ever convince the British folks of some great benefits of open borders if we can not inform them who’s within the nation. Labour’s 2005 common election manifesto incorporated a promise to introduce ID playing cards, however after their victory, due to Home Office delays, they weren’t presented till February 2020. About 15,000 have been issued. Had they been on be offering in 2007 there would were tens of millions. Most folks would have noticed them as helpful for passport-free shuttle, evidence of age and prevention of voter fraud.
It is an antediluvian fable that they’re a danger to civil liberties. On the continent, open borders and loose motion are supported as a result of voters know their democratic governments factor ID playing cards, so that they know who lives in a rustic. The Tory-Lib Dem abolition of the nascent ID card device in the summertime of 2020 used to be the most important first step against
Former Europe minister, 2002-05
• Empowering virtual id at a countrywide degree will support alternatives now not only for folks, however for the financial system as an entire. Through get right of entry to to devoted information, training about what the programme includes and readability round requirements for organisations the use of this information, the federal government will be capable of higher supply voters with protected, protected get right of entry to to virtual services and products. The largest problem dealing with the federal government will likely be one of cash. Whether putting in infrastructure or imposing a framework for validation, verification and authentication, Downing Street has its paintings minimize out to make certain that the whole thing runs easily – important to development agree with, specifically in mild of track-and-trace information privateness considerations.
We want to forestall viewing virtual identities and the information connected as “excellent” and “dangerous”. Instead, the query must centre round how can this be set as much as get advantages the rustic as an entire whilst growing minimum disruption.
• The trials and tribulations of the Windrush era in making an attempt to acquire “indefinite depart to stay” standing illustrates, once more, the will for a countrywide id card. It’s time we fell in step with the continent by way of having the sort of device. Needless to mention, checking out the standing of EU citizens, come our definitive departure from the EU, will turn out to be an almighty administrative nightmare.
Winterborne Houghton, Dorset