'Big Brother Watch' launches manifesto to challenge election candidates

CAMPAIGNERS fighting yet more Big Brother’ state intrusions on privacy and individual liberty have launched their own non party’ General Election manifesto. They are challenging party candidates to make a pledge on privacy and liberty

By Mike Brooke

CAMPAIGNERS fighting yet more 'Big Brother' state intrusions on privacy and individual liberty have launched their own 'non party' General Election manifesto.

The Big Brother Watch grassroots lobby is challenging party candidates running for Westminster to make a pledge on privacy and liberty.

The pledges include scrapping the National Identity Register, spy camera surveillance and the obligation on telecom companies to keep information on subscribers and supplying it to the Government.

"This is a list of achievable pledges that would go some way to rolling-back the surveillance state," said Big Brother Watch campaign director Dylan Sharpe. "It would give the British people greater freedom to live their lives without State interference and end the persecution of the law-abiding British family.

"We are facing down an over-mighty Government intent on hoarding data and creating ever-more onerous restrictions on our daily lives."

He added: "Our manifesto spells out simple reforms an incoming government could take that would restore our privacy and freedom to a level befitting the 'home' of liberal democracy."


Big Brother Watch has carried out a survey on how the main parties match up, comparing their own Manifesto with party manifestos.

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CIVIL LIBERTIES: End 'intercept' modernisation, Control orders, random 'stop and search'.

Labour: "We are proud of our record on civil liberties" (p.5:4)

Conservatives: "Personal data should be controlled by individual citizens. We will protect people from unwarranted State intrusion" (p.79)

Lib Dems: "We will protect and restore freedoms and introduce a Freedom Bill" (p.93)

ID CARDS: Scrap the National Identity Register

Labour: "The new biometric ID scheme will be offered to an increasing number of British citizens" (p.5:5)

Conservatives: "We will scrap the National Identity Register" (p.79)

Lib Dems: "Scrap intrusive ID cards, have more police instead and scrap plans for unnecessary new passports with additional biometric data" (p.94)

CCTV and DNA: Public consultation before local councils install CCTV systems. New procedures to remove DNA profiles of innocent people

Labour: "We will continue to make full use of CCTV and DNA technology" (p.5:4)

Conservatives: "We will legislate to make sure the DNA database is used to store information about those guilty of crimes, rather than those who are innocent" (p.80)

Lib Dems: "We will regulate CCTV and remove innocent people from the police DNA database" (pp.94-5)