Join our 'Renew for Freedom' campaign in MayNow is the time to renew your passport and promote our 'renew for freedom campaign'. This is a once only campaign so spread the word. Tell everyone you know - mail your friends and colleagues directly, write letters to your local newspaper saying why you've renewed your passport and encouraging others to do the same. You can also tell them about our website (www.renewforfreedom.org), which contains details of the campaign and a factsheet about passport renewal.
Remember a 10 year passport will cost £51 and last until after the next election. Soon the government will require UK citizens to attend interrogation centres to be fingerprinted like criminals, numbered like cattle and entered onto the government's big brother database the National Identity Register(NIR) at a cost of £93. It is quite possible that from later this year the UK Identity and Passport Service(UKIPS) could start collecting data of people renewing passports and storing it in a holding database, ready to be transferred to the National Identity Register at a later date.
Local groups around the country have been promoting the campaign in local newspapers and on the radio, and stunts such as NO2ID Glasgow's photo op at the passport office in Glasgow next week are planned throughout May. An ever growing list of organisations are now signed up to the campaign including Liberty, Privacy International, Statewatch, UKIP, the Liberal Democrats and Our World Our Say who ran a full page advertisement in the Independent promoting our action.
Let's send a message to the government - we don't want ID cards or a National Identity Register. £51 spent in May could prove to be one of the wisest investments you and your family ever make in their privacy and freedom. It's that simple.
For more details and to download our factsheet go to http://www.renewforfreedom.org/
New local groupsWe now have local groups in Llandeilo in Wales, Helensburgh in Scotland and Highbury in London. A list of groups (and a new interactive map) can be found at www.no2id.net/localGroups
11th May - Swindon NO2ID MeetingThursday, 11th May 7.30pm at the Clifton Inn , Clifton street (off Kings Hill), all welcome. Contact Lynda at email@example.com for more details.
11th May - North West Information Managers Conference- StockportThursday, 11th May 2006 at Stockport Town Hall. Phil Booth, NO2ID National Coordinator, will be addressing the day-long conference which includes contributions from NADPO, lawyers, journalists, the National Consumer Council and the Information Commissioner's Office. More details here: http://www.actnow.org.uk/NW.htm
11th May — Southwark NO2ID planning meeting and socialThursday, 11th May 7.00pm at the Barrowboy and Banker pub, 6-8 Borough High Street, London Bridge. Further dates have been arranged for the next month:14th May: leafleting shoppers at Southwark Tesco, 27th May: leafleting shoppers at Borough Market. Southwark NO2ID are also trying to arrange a public meeting in June with MPs or politicians from the LibDem, Conservative and UKIP parties. For more info or if you are able to help contact Martin Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org, 07974672112
13th May - Glasgow NO2ID, stall in Glasgow city centreIf the weather is fair on Saturday afternoon(13th May) there will be a NO2ID stall in Buchanan Street. If the weather is poor we may instead do some discreet subterranean leafleting. If you want to join us, contact the group at email@example.com. If you see us about, why not say hello and grab a badge or buy a T-shirt?
15th May — Renew for Freedom in GlasgowMonday, 15th May 10:00am at Glasgow Passport Office, 96 Milton St, Cowcaddens. We need as many local NO2ID supporters as possible for a media photo opportunity outside the passport office(whether or not you intend to renew your passport). Participants should aim to be there at 10am, ready for the media at 10:30. Please do feel free to dress appropriately for the theme "nothing to hide". Get in touch if you want some ideas. For more details, and to let the organisers know who'll be coming, please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
15th May — Highbury NO2ID - First MeetingMonday, 15th May 2006 6pm for a 6.30pm start at the Jorene Celeste pub on 153 Upper Street (between Angel and Highbury & Islington tube stations). Contact email@example.com for more details.
16th May - NO2ID Volunteers Meting, Central LondonTuesday, 16th May 7.00pm in the Bertrand Russell room at Conway Hall. All are welcome to NO2ID's next volunteers' meeting. The meeting will have a theme of 'Work and ID cards', looking at issues such as Criminal Records Bureau checks and the National Identity Register. The meeting is free to attend but we will be asking for donations to help cover the cost of the room hire.
16th May - Glasgow NO2ID informal meetingTuesday, 16th May at 7.30pm in Mono. Everyone is very welcome to attend and we hope to see as many new faces this time as we did at the meeting two weeks ago. (If for any reason Mono is not suitable on that evening then we will instead go to Laurie's across the road). Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or see http://www.no2id-scotland.net/glasgow/meeting.htm
19th May — Preston NO2ID Public MeetingFriday, 19th May 7.30pm until around 9 pm, at 'Bitter Suite' behind Times Square pub, off Fylde Road, Preston, almost opposite the Student Union. Phil Booth, NO2ID National Coordinator will be speaking. All are welcome. Contact email@example.com for more details.
20th May — UK Independence Party's North West Spring ConferenceSaturday, 20th May. Phil Booth will be addressing the UK Independence Party's North West Spring Conference in Morecambe on Saturday 20th May. The two-day conference will be held in Headway Hotel, Marine Drive, East Promenade, Morecambe LA4 5AW. More details at http://ukipnw.org/events/nwspringconf.gif
20th & 21st May - Glasgow NO2ID stall at Strathclyde University "Neoliberal Scotland?" conferenceSaturday 20th and Sunday 21st May, at Department of Geography & Sociology, University of Strathclyde Glasgow. Seven years after the creation of the Scottish Parliament, Strathclyde University are hosting a conference to reflect on the effect of devolution on Scottish society. (Event info http://gs.strath.ac.uk/modules.php?name=News&file=print&sid=29). Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
24th May - Next meeting of North Staffs NO2IDWednesday, 24th May starting at 8pm at St. Luke's Church hall, Fountain St, Leek, Staffs starting at 8 for 8.30pm. [Pub opposite!] Everyone welcome. Form more details contact Laura Marcus (email@example.com)
27th May - Bristol No2ID benefit gigSaturday, 27th May at The White Bear, top of St Michael's Hill, £3. Featuring the Grumpy Man DJs, Paul Bradley from The Organelles, Mephisto's Island and Chris Beckett. For more info contact Dave Gould(firstname.lastname@example.org)
3rd June - NO2ID Cambridge will have a stall at Cambridge Strawberry FairSaturday, 3rd June. Volunteers are needed to man the stall for 2 hour shifts from 10am until 10pm: please contact email@example.com, or text/call Andrew Watson on 07710 469624. We signed up 500 supporters in 5 hours last year - I'd like to triple that number this year. (Strawberry Fair info: http://www.strawberry-fair.org.uk)
4th July - Homeland and Border Security Conference (£695+vat)Tuesday, 4 July at QEII Conference Centre, London, UK. a one-day event that will look at the next steps for the security community. Featuring "key figures from the IT sector, government, the police, justice, and the international community". Cost - £695+vat for private sector, £175+VAT for public sector.
What just happened?
North Somerset Council say no to ID cardsAlmost every North Somerset councillor voted to resist Government plans to introduce the cards in the district at a meeting this week. The council voted, amongst other things, to "make it a policy of the Council to ensure that national identity cards would not be required to access Council services or benefits unless specifically called to do so by Act of Parliament". A growing number of councils around the country have now passed motions against ID cards. Following the local elections last week several councils have now changed complexion so over the next few weeks we will be looking to encourage more councils to pass similar resolutions.
NO2ID Glasgow address the Anti-Racist AllianceOn Wednesday 10th May, Geraint Bevan of Glasgow NO2ID explained some of the issues that will arise from the ID scheme if the government get their way. Copies of the presentation will soon be available from the Glasgow NO2ID website: http://www.glasgow-no2id.org.uk
IT industry and academics criticise ID card schemeLast week(3rd May) the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee heard evidence on the government's handling of scientific advice in relation to the ID card scheme. Representatives of industry and academia said that they had not been sufficiently consulted. Professor Martyn Thomas from the UK Computing Research Committee said: "Looking at what has been done rather than what has been said would lead the man from Mars to assume that the real objective was to create a database of the nation's biometrics and that everything else was just window dressing." On the parliament-live website audio recording of the session at the end of the first evidence session, committee member and Labour MP Dr Desmond Turner can be heard saying to the committee chairman: "I'm starting to go off ID cards quite badly". Don't worry Dr Turner, most people tend to go off the government's scheme when they start to understand what it actually is.
The audio recording of the session is at www.parliamentlive.tv/Console.aspx?Encoding=4684
UKIPS announces location of new passport interrogation centresLast week the United Kingdom Identity and Passport Service (UKIPS) announced the location of the 69 interrogation centres that will be used to interview first time passport applicants and later enrol people onto the National Identity Register(NIR). Locations include Yeovil, Norwich, Skye, Sussex and Aberystwyth. In a press release relating to the Sussex centre, the Home Office estimate that "7,425 applicants from across Sussex will be required to attend 20-minute inter-views every year". But the government's aim is to get 80% of the population's personal details, fingerprints and iris scans into the giant centralised database. Over at blairwatch.co.uk they've done some back of an envelope calculations, based on 70 interrogation centres (the originally predicted number). They reckon each centre will need to process 400 citizens per day. They conclude that "from NIR Day 1 for the next ten years you've got to keep processing people at the rate of 50 per hour at every centre, or one every 72 seconds!" The best way to avoid this chaos of course is renew your passport now as part of our renew for freedom campaign.
See http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4967276.stm and http://www.blairwatch.co.uk/node/945
UKIPS advertises brand postThis week's Media Guardian carried a job advertisement for the position of 'Brand Development Manager' at the United Kingdom Identity and Passport Service(UKIPS). Fortunately, this is not about applying hot irons to the citizenry. But the lucky appointee will be expected to "establish a brand that resonates with customers, both UK residents and the private and public sector. This role will champion the development and implementation of the agency brand and over time manage a portfolio of product and service brands." (!?)
How to tell if you have an e-Passport
Several readers have asked how to tell if their passport contains a
Radio Frequency Identification(RFID) chip. The new 'ePassports' have
the International Civil Aviation Organisation(ICAO) ePassport logo on
the front page. Silicon.com have pictures of the new passport on their