UK Parliament introduces a bill to repeal the ID Act

September 9, 2010 |

A ray of light comes from the UK on a civil liberties issue.  The Identity Documents Bill 2010 – 11, introduced on 26 May 2010 and read a second time on 9 June 2010, considered by Public Bill Commitee will be returned to the House  for a report by the Committee on 15 September 2010.  The main purpose of this Bill is to abolish identity cards and the National Identity Register; it repeals the Identity Cards Act 2006. Curious that a Conservative Liberal Democrat Governent would overturn such a blight on liberties enacted by a Labor Party. The previous government had so seriously trashed any reputation it did have for protecting rights,with ASBOs and reducing jury trials being just two examples, that it isn’t so curious.

Herein lies a salutory lesson.  Australia came very close to having an ID card, first with the Australia  Card in 1980s and more recently with a proposed identity card under a Coalition Government.  The temptation is great and it was only a quirk of fate in the UK that the ID card is being rolled back.  Better never to have it.

The key provisions are:

1 Repeal of Identity Cards Act 2006
(1) The Identity Cards Act 2006 is repealed.
(2) But—
(a) sections 25 and 26 of that Act (possession of false identity documents
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etc), and
(b) section 38 of that Act (verifying information provided with passport
applications etc),
are re-enacted (with consequential amendments) by this Act.
(3) In addition, the amendment of section 1 of the Consular Fees Act 1980 made by
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section 36 of the Identity Cards Act 2006 continues to have effect subject to a
consequential amendment (see paragraph 2 of the Schedule to this Act).
2 Cancellation of ID cards etc
(1) No ID cards are to be issued by the Secretary of State at any time on or after the
day on which this Act is passed.
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(2) All ID cards that are valid immediately before that day are to be treated as
cancelled by the Secretary of State at the end of the period of one month
beginning with that day.
(3) As soon as reasonably practicable after that day, the Secretary of State must
send a letter to every cardholder—
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(a) informing the cardholder that the cardholder’s ID card is to be treated
as cancelled as mentioned in subsection (2), and

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