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NO2ID NEWSLETTER – Supporter’s Newsletter No.22 – 16th June 2005

Speakers confirmed for ‘Even Bigger Brother’ meeting in London, June 29: Rt Hon Tony Benn, Rt. Hon. Peter Lilley MP, Alistair Carmichael MP, George Galloway MP, and Director of Liberty, Shami Chakrabarti

The Identity Cards Bill will get its Second Reading on Tuesday June 28. NO2ID are lobbying MPs in the meantime and there has been continued media interest in our campaign this week with the release of a new ICM poll (see below).

There are a number of things that supporters can do to help in the campaign against ID cards and a National Identity Register:

This week NO2ID have initiated a pledge for those who will resist compulsory registration for a State-issued ID card. Our aim is to get 10,000 people to pledge that they will refuse to register for an ID card donate £10 to a legal defence fund. On the first day alone we got well over 10% of our target, ‘raising’ a legal defence fund (should it be necessary) of around £12,000 in less than 24 hours. As we go to press we have reached over 30%.

Please, if you can, make your pledge at www.pledgebank.com/refuse or by texting ‘pledge refuse’ to 60022 [standard text rate].

Pass on or promote this message/link to as many sympathetic people and groups, mailing lists, bulletin boards and publications as you can *without spamming*. To spread the message further PledgeBank provide flyers and posters to print out. N.B. if you prefer to keep your online pledge private, simply uncheck the ‘Show my name on this pledge’ box before signing.
*All monies pledged will be held in trust for use in defending those individuals who are prosecuted
for resisting registration.

Some of you may have already contacted your MP about ID cards. Now we are asking that ALL of you do! The Second Reading of the Identity Cards Bill is just 12 days away, so it is vital that you make your
opposition known to your representatives in Parliament before they cast their vote. Every letter or meeting at a constituency surgery *will* count.

To help you do this, we have constructed an online lobbying ‘toolkit’ at mps.no2id.net/. This is not yet linked from the main body of the NO2ID site (though you can get to the rest of the site from it) as it is still a ‘beta’ version. Everything is working OK, though it may not be wonderfully pretty – so we thought it important to get this out to you now. Please use it.

Simply enter your postcode, and you will find out your MP’s current position on ID cards – as best as we can tell – and links that enable you to find out exactly how they have voted on ID cards, and to contact them (via www.WriteToThem.com). In some constituencies you will find an ‘open letter’ to sign. This is where we think we can show a Labour MP with a small majority just what the consequences of voting for the Bill will be.

You should be asking your MP to (a) vote against the Bill, (b) if they won’t vote against to absent themselves from the vote, and (c) if they oppose the government’s ID scheme to sign Early Day Motion (EDM) 263 against Identity Cards: edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=28464

On Wednesday, 29th June NO2ID are hosting a public meeting in London to discuss identity cards.
See What’s Next section below.

All of our campaigners are volunteers but the materials and equipment we use cost money. So please:

Join NO2ID, if you are not already a paid-up member. Hundreds already have.
(There’s a membership form at www.no2id.net/downloads/membForm.pdf)

Paying anything over £15 p.a. means you qualify as a member – though most members give a monthly amount. Regular giving is the best way to help the campaign. For obvious reasons, we do need to know each member’s name, postal address (including postcode) and e-mail address, but we will not voluntarily give personal details to any outside organisation.
Donate some money towards campaign expenses… we need your help NOW. For example:

£10 lets us send information packs to 15 enquirers
£20 pays the office phone bill for a week
£50 will buy the envelopes to send a briefing to MPs
£100 covers the materials to print it
£300 lets us post it to them
£600 covers the rent for our tiny office for a month
Thank you (in advance) for your contribution. Together we can beat this.
NO2ID, Box 412, 78 Marylebone High Street, LONDON W1U 5AP

We now have 70 local groups up and down the country. Please get in touch with your local group if you can help out locally. If you’d like to set up a new local group for your town, you should be a member and be prepared to be contacted by supporters and local journalists. For a list of local groups and contacts see www.no2id.net/localGroups

* We also maintain a list of things you can do on our website at


++ What Just Happened?

An ICM poll published this week shows that support for ID cards has now fallen to 55%. This is in
stark contrast to the 80% support that the government has consistently claimed.

The poll was commissioned by NO2ID and asked 1010 adults what they thought of the government’s ID card proposals; 55% thought it a good/very good idea, 43% thought it a bad or very bad idea. Support was lowest in the 18-24 age group, with just 8% thinking ID cards are a very good idea and geographically support was lowest in Scotland and Wales with 9% and 8% respectively thinking they are a good idea. In December 2004 a similar ICM poll found 68% support. The poll question used the Government’s current figures for the cost of the card and passport combined, despite recent revelations from the upcoming LSE report that these are likely to be seriously underestimated.

ICM Research interviewed a random sample of 1010 adults aged 18+ by telephone between 10-12 June 2005. Interviews were conducted across the country and the results have been weighted to the profile of all adults. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. Further information at www.icmresearch.co.uk

On Wednesday (June 15) the London Assembly called for the Government to review its plans to introduce identify cards across the UK. A motion was passed by 15 votes to 5 that said the government’s plans “will not prove to be a cost effective measure in combating crime, raise legitimate concerns about civil liberties and will not represent good value for money”. The Assembly also put questions on ID cards to Sir Ian Blair, Commissioner of Metropolitan Police.

Watch the debate (starts 01:55:03):
[ Sir Ian Blair, Commissioner of Metropolitan Police answering ID card questions (34:22 – 51:54) ]
Transcript of the debate should be available soon from:

On Tuesday 7 June the Welsh Assembly passed a motion that ID cards would not be required to access public services in Wales. The Assembly joins the Scottish Parliament and a growing number of local councils and in opposition against identity cards. The motion was carried by 29 votes with 29 abstentions. An amendment to the motion calling on the Welsh Assembly Government to use its best efforts to ensure that ID cards are not required for access to non-devolved services was narrowly defeated when the presiding officer used his casting vote.

Liberal Democrat Assembly Member(AM) Mick Bates, who opened the debate, said: “The alternative title for this debate could be ‘ID Cards-senseless bureaucracy’, or ‘Will you need an ID card to use a public loo?’”. Conservative AM Mark Isherwood described the New Labour government as “a regime rather than a Government that has shown contempt for parliamentary democratic practice and the protection of the civil liberties”. Plaid Cymru AM Jocelyn Davies said: “Plaid Cymru remains concerned about the refusal of the UK Government to publish the legal advice of the Attorney General on this Bill’s implications for civil liberties”.

The Labour AMs abstained on the motion because they believed it to be redundant as the Assembly Government says it has no intention of using ID cards as a requirement to access public services. Labour AM and Minister for Finance Sue Essex said: “the Assembly Government is investigating the potential of an integrated smart card, which could improve access to public services in Wales.”

Transcript of the debate:
Watch the debate (starts at 01:33:33):

A meeting of the Trades Union Councils conference in Liverpool last weekend supported a motion that described the government’s ID card plans as “an attack on individual rights and freedoms that could easily lead to institutional discrimination and to unfair and unlawful denial of benefits & services.” The conference called on the General Council of the TUC to take an early decision on ID cards. (The national TUC conference is in September).

Six organisations representing a wide-range of civil society and professional sectors have launched a campaign and a petition against the French government’s biometric ID card project. The French Human Rights League (LDH), the Magistrates Union (SM), the Union of French Barristers (SAF), the French Association of Democrat Lawyers (AFJD), the Internet rights association (IRIS), and DELIS (a coalition of French NGOs and trade unions for the defence of privacy and personal data protection), has published a joint statement against the future mandatory e-ID card and launched a petition demanding the “immediate withdrawal” of the project.

The groups have highlighted the fact that the National Commission for Informatics and Liberty (CNIL) – France’s official data protection watchdog – had still not been officially asked by the French government for its consultative opinion.

The French e-ID card, also known as project “INES” (’Identité Nationale Electronique Sécurisée’, or ‘Secure Electronic National Identity’) was announced in September 2003 and officially approved by the Prime Minister on 11 April 2005. The card will be contain a radio frequency identification (RFID) chip storing all the identity information of the holder. See www.edri.org/edrigram/number3.11/biometrics


++ What’s Next?

+ 22 JUNE Milton Keynes NO2ID Public Meeting
Wednesday, 22nd June 2005, 7.30pm at Quaker Centre, Fairford Crescent, Downhead Park, Milton
Speakers: Doug Jewell from Liberty, and Mike Richards, a data protection expert from the Open
For further details, contact Steve at Milton.Keynes@no2id.net.

+ 23 JUNE Big Brother Awards
Thursday, 23rd June 2005, 7.15pm at Quad bar of LSE
Privacy International’s notorious Big Brother Awards. MC for the evening will be Chris Green, the comic mastermind behind stand-up stage characters Tina C and Ida Barr. Anyone wanting to attend RSVP as quickly as possible to Rick Abbey at ukbba@privacy.org

More details at www.privacyinternational.org/article.shtml?cmd[347]=x-347-209836

+ 29 JUNE Even Bigger Brother, NO2ID Public Meeting
Wednesday, 29th June 2005, 7.00pm at University of Westminster, Old Cinema, 309 Regent’s Street, London, W1B 2UB.

In stark contrast to the government’s failure to openly discuss their proposals, NO2ID will be holding a public meeting to discuss the contents and implications of the UK Identity Card Bill.


* Rt Hon Tony Benn

* Rt. Hon. Peter Lilley MP

* Alistair Carmichael MP

* George Galloway MP, and

* Director of Liberty, Shami Chakrabarti
Mark Littlewood (of No2ID) will be in the Chair

NO2ID welcomes anyone regardless of their previous knowledge or understanding of the issues, and especially urges those who are undecided or interested in knowing more to come along. The meeting is free and open to all. However, space is limited. Register, and confirm your place at www.no2id.net/events/evenbiggerbrother.php

Nearest Tube: Oxford Circus (4mins away)
Location map: www.multimap.com/map/browse.cgi?local=h&scale=5000&pc=W1B2UW

+ 2 July Edinburgh Benefit Gig
Saturday, 2nd July 2005, 7.00pm – 10.00pm at the Bongo Club, 37 Holyrood Road, Edinburgh.
The NO2ID Edinburgh local group is holding a fundraising benefit gig.
Admission is £5 (£4 concessions) on the door (cash only).
One week before hitting the T-Break stage at T in the Park, Edinburgh newcomers Thee Comrades and electro merchants Staccato Set will join the Xvectors for what’s set to be a rocking night. Upstairs, you’ll find some experimental electronica with some comedy band names; namely Final Brass Rabbi, Pre, Wounded Knee.

Please come along and enjoy some of the best new Edinburgh sounds whilst supporting the fight against Identity Cards and the database state.

More details at www.no2id-scotland.net/local/edinburgh02072005.html


++ “ID” In the News

+ Yard chief casts doubt on ID cards scheme +
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair today cast doubt on whether the Government’s identity
card scheme will work.

+ ID Cards on Trial: Illegal working myth exposed +
Government claims that the introduction of the £5.8bn ID card scheme will tackle illegal working in the UK have come under fire.

+ ID cards: implications for Black, Minority Ethnic, migrant and refugee communities +
The Identity Cards Bill, introduced on 25 May 2005, is aimed at enabling the policing of a harder boundary of entitlement between British citizens and foreigners.

+ US expected to abandon Biometric passport plan +
Rules requiring Irish citizens to carry high-tech passports when visiting the US are to be dropped because the technology behind the scheme is seen as unreliable.

+ EU biometric passports running behind +
Only six EU countries will meet the U.S. deadline of issuing biometric passports by Oct. 26, while France and Italy have even greater travel document problems.

+ ID cards will ‘help fraudsters’ +
Leading fraud experts have rejected Tony Blair’s claims that identity cards will help to stem the soaring costs of identity theft.

+ ID cards could be forced on Wales despite Assembly vote +
Identity cards could be imposed on Wales, it has emerged just one day after the National Assembly voiced its opposition to the scheme.

+ Seven EU Member States to share access to DNA and fingerprint databases +
On 27 May 2005 the governments of Belgium, Germany, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and Austria reinforced their police and criminal justice cooperation by signing a data-sharing agreement dubbed ‘Schengen III’.

+ Academics pitch alternative ID card scheme +
Proposals for a cheaper and more citizen friendly alternative to the UK Government’s controversial national identity cards scheme have been put forward by a group of academics from the London School of Economics.

(Please send me any items of interest you encounter – Editor)

Publication details: (c) NO2ID 2005 – 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 No.412, 78 Marylebone High Street, LONDON W1U 5AP

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