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Last Updated: Sunday, 6 June, 2004, 13:19 GMT 14:19 UK
Council opposes national ID cards
Demonstration ID card
The government scheme is estimated to cost 3 billion
County councillors in Devon are opposing the introduction of national citizens' identity cards.

Councillor David Morrish put forward a motion to oppose the government's plan.

He claims the scheme would not give Devon any additional security from terrorist attacks, nor reduce anti-social behaviour.

Despite arguments that ID cards were similar to PIN numbers and could protect ethnic minorities, councillors voted by 20 to 13 to oppose the plan.

Mr Morrish also claims the scheme, estimated to cost 3 billion, would mean a further financial burden on the people of Devon and could undermine council policies.

He says there is no evidence the scheme would achieve its aims, adding that ID cards had not prevented the terrorist attack in Madrid in March.
It will cost a fortune and lead to another expensive IT fiasco
Cllr Brian Greenslade

"We are sleepwalking into the future and before we go any further, we'd better stop and look at the map."

Mr Morrish is supported by the deputy leader of the council, Brian Greenslade.

Mr Greenslade believes the scheme will create a "bureaucratic nightmare".

"It will cost a fortune and lead to another expensive IT fiasco," he said.

Equality

Councillor Saxon Spence describes herself as an "agnostic" over the ID scheme.

But she says if it is done properly if could bring more equality and help protect black and ethnic minority citizens.

She said: "It's awful that they are pounced on. If they have got clear identity, it might actually solve the problem."

The government is currently going through the consultation process on the proposed legislation in its Draft ID Cards Bill.




SEE ALSO:
Firm chosen to develop ID cards
24 May 04  |  Politics
Protest over ID card pilot scheme
21 May 04  |  Scotland
Opponents take on ID card plans
20 May 04  |  Technology
Lord Mayor signs up for ID scheme
07 May 04  |  Tyne/Wear


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