Lord Lucas

From Nhs It Info


House of Lords debate (21 Mar 2005)


". . . I am one of the 80 per cent who would like to have a national identity card, but I want a card which is useful to me. I want something that brings me benefits, which works well for me, not just in the airy-fairy world of thinking that maybe it will stop a terrorist killing me—which is a bit remote and, as I will come on to, I have my doubts about anyway—but in terms of the ordinary benefits of not having a wallet full of plastic and being able to assert my identity when I wish to do so, as the noble Lord, Lord Giddens, said. It is a thoroughly useful concept. It needs to be one that works, however, and it needs to work practically, efficiently and cost-effectively and must not take too much of my liberty away. . . This Bill needs a lot of attention. I would like to see it reintroduced as a draft Bill with a good, long period—six months, say—of consideration by a Joint Committee. There are a lot of issues, as the LSE points out, to be addressed. They range from the deeply technical to the libertarian to security. There are a lot of things to be understood. It will also take some while to persuade the Government that in some ways they have been heading down the wrong track. We are probably all saying that this is the track we are going down, but let us go down it in the right way. It is going to be a fundamental part of our lives, and we want to get it right. We do not want the traditional NHS computer system mess-up happening to us with something which is going to be such a frequent part of our everyday lives. . ."

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