The government’s much-derided national ID scheme will be launched in two years time… but it will not be compulsory.
Later this year, people living in Greater Manchester will be able on a trial basis to buy a card for £30. Another ID scheme, to cover foreign nationals, which will be compulsory, will be launched at the same time.
Home secretary Alan Johnson, launching the new card, said:
“The introduction of ID cards today reaches another milestone, enabling the people of Manchester to prove and protect their identity in a quick, simple and secure way.
“Given the growing problem of identity fraud and the inconvenience of having to carry passports, coupled with gas bills or six months worth of bank statements to prove identity, I believe the ID card will be welcomed as an important addition to the many plastic cards that most people already carry.”
That statement is completely bogus. There have been fears that the government and public bodies will use the card to deny people access to basic frontline services. Any hardline criminal or terrorist can easily change his or her identity and many people would not be able to tell the difference. Then there’s always the rising cost of implementing the scheme, and the fact that ministers did a U-turn on forcing people to have the card.
Britain’s database state is getting closer. The last chance to stop it dominating our lives will come at the next general election. If you care about your freedom and right to live your life without Whitehall interference, then don’t moan about it- make this an issue… and vote against it.