Misleading over ID cards

You report (6 March) that the Home Office will be issuing the first biometric passports this week. Meanwhile, the Identity Cards Bill is still languishing in Parliament, where the House of Lords is fighting government's attempts to make all passport applicants apply for ID cards from 2008.

That biometric passports can be issued now, while none of the ID card infrastructure is in place, shows that ministers have been trying to mislead the public when they have indicated that most of the costs of ID cards would be incurred anyway because of new regulations on travel documents.

The enormous costs of compulsory national ID cards are not required for biometric passports to be issued; nor is the creation of a new army of bureaucrats to administer the scheme.

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The government's proposed National Identity Register is unnecessary, needlessly expensive and would be a grave threat to the privacy of United Kingdom residents.

With declining popular support for compulsory ID cards, ministers should accept they have made a mistake and consign the scheme to history.


NO2ID Scotland

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