ID Interrogation centre to be in E&C

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Saturday 24 March 2007 4.54pm
The colossal waste of money and massive infringement of civil liberties that is the ID card and database rumbles on. The interrogation centre that will serve the whole of London - and further afield - will be based in E&C, probably in Hannibal House. There's going to be a (short) rally against ID cards outside HH on Monday night at 7. For anyone who's interested - here's the email I received:

Guy Herbert wrote:
ID-day - the fightback against the database state begins here.*
My apologies for the short notice. Although we designated 26th April as ID-day several weeks ago now, and local groups in Scotland and the rest of England have settled their demos for a while, we have been revising our London plans behind the scenes as more information came to hand.

Finally, last week the Identity and Passport Service came usefully clean with two announcements:

First, interrogations begin in May - they are running behind their original schedule.

Second, the London Interrogation Centre will be at the Elephant and Castle, a safe distance from the Victoria headquarters of the IPS. (We
expect, though it is not yet confirmed, that it will be in Hannibal House, a vast government office building that houses several
organisations.)

In the light of this we are holding a rally at the Elephant and Castle on Monday evening from 7pm on, outside Hannibal House. It is a simple
symbolic assembly with a press call to announce a month of protest leading up to the revised start date of interrogations:

"ID-day - the fightback against the database state begins here."

Of course we'll be pressing the message of "Take A Hike, Tony" that people, particularly young people, should get a passport before the new
system is in place. And we'll be demonstrating to the press how you can "Show them you're not a number" by sending an anonymous picture of your
face to 60300 with the word "no2id".

If you can give half an hour of your time to show *your* support, then please do. All that's involved is being a face in the crowd. Though you might wave a placard (provided), or flourish a mobile-phone at the appropriate moment. That will help dramatise that millions of real
people like you, won't become numbers without a fight.

Yours truly

--
Guy Herbert
General Secretary
NO2ID
Box 412, 19-21 Crawford Street
LONDON W1H 1PJ
Sunday 25 March 2007 10.12am
I know let's just take the word of every new passport applicant and not try and find out if there is any truth to their application. Good plan emmalouise. FACT, ID cars don't exist yet. FACT, starting this spring, the Identity and Passport service will require first-time applicants aged 16 and over to be personally interviewed before their new passports can be issued. This is what the E&C centre must be dealing with. Not so scary when the facts are reported faithfully!
Sunday 25 March 2007 1.48pm
Jerry's right, the important debate on ID cards isn't helped by this kind of hyperbole.

You'd expect a face-to-face interview ("interrogation", perhaps Emma Louise would call it) before you get support from social security, or a place on a local authority's housing list. In principle, is it objectionable to ask applicants for passports to turn up for an interview in the same way? Bogus passports are linked to people trafficking, one of the scourges of our time.
Sunday 25 March 2007 4.58pm
Heqr hear. This nonsense about "infringement of liberties" having to have an ID card is a mystery to me. Most countries have, and have had for years, ID cards. If you have nothing to hide there is no infringement of anything. As for checking who is who when doling out passports - good thing too. This fuzzy liberal thinking is what has made our benefit system prey to every passing illegal immigrant, the UK is a laughing stock all over the world as the place where freeloaders can load up with no questions asked. I will NOT be attending this demo.
Sunday 25 March 2007 9.08pm
This is what I thought too, till I found out what they'll be asking! It's shocking how detailed it is. 50 questions, many of them about your personal life. Speaking for myself, I just don't want to be forced to give details of my sexual partners, who I may have shared a house with, what they were like, names and dates etc. I will be at the Hannibal House meeting tomorrow, if you care about personal freedom you're welcome to join me. It's 7pm Mon. 26th at Hannibal House, the government building over Elephant & Castle shopping centre.
Sunday 25 March 2007 9.31pm
Coulddo better- do you live in the SE1 area? I notice you've just joined our forum today- wonder why...
I agree with Jerry and Jackie- unfortunately we now live in a world where none of us are free anymore and we live daily with the threat of terrorism, modern slavery in the form of people trafficking etc. So what if you have to answer stringent questions about your personal life in order to get a passport- if you are a law abiding citizen, what do you have to fear.
I too will NOT attend this 'demo'.
Sunday 25 March 2007 11.23pm
coulddobetter wrote:
This is what I thought too, till I found out what they'll be asking! It's shocking how detailed it is. 50 questions, many of them about your personal life. Speaking for myself, I just don't want to be forced to give details of my sexual partners, who I may have shared a house with, what they were like, names and dates etc.

Really? Where did you find this info?

I read this:

The interview process will take about 30 minutes and will be conducted in a friendly manner, consisting mainly of asking applicants to confirm facts about themselves, which someone attempting to steal their identity may not know.

All personal information used in the interview is destroyed shortly after the passport is issued.


Details here:

http://www.passport.gov.uk/passport_first_interviews.asp

http://www.passport.gov.uk/news/news.asp?strAreaNo=320&intelement=1374
Sunday 25 March 2007 11.56pm
I think many people's issue with ID cards is the cost (estimated now to be 300+ a head) rather than the perceived infringement of civil liberties, but of course complaining about the latter is seen as more dignified and less NIMBY-ish than saying "Jeepers, but this is expensive!"
Monday 26 March 2007 12.10am
According to the IPS, ID cards will only cost 30 (on top of the passport fee, which is currently 66)

http://www.identitycards.gov.uk/myth-cost.asp
Monday 26 March 2007 9.02am
I'll believe it when I see it, although thank you for pointing me in the direction of the official statement on the matter.

This could well prove to be like the Olympic budget, which initially failed to take account of the costs of VAT, urban regeneration, security - almost everything in fact - and is now four times what it was originally estimated at.
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