Dear Don Foster, I would like to draw your attention to Clause 152 of the Coroners and Justice Bill. The Bill is currently in the committee phase. I am not very familiar with reading legislation or interpreting it, but having read the clause, I would summarise as follows. The clause amends the Data Protection Act 1998 to allow ministers to break the act (by sharing personal information) when it is "necessary to secure a relevant policy" i.e. whenever they like. No restriction is placed on who the information may be shared with, or for what purposes. Part B, subsection (2) also allows for the creation of offences through the issuing of information sharing orders… I don’t know how these things are normally done, but that just doesn’t sound right. I fear this is a "get out clause" for those who feel tied by the Data Protection Act. It also seems to clear barriers to sharing of personal information between government departments… but further places no restriction on sharing with the private sector. Yours sincerely, Craig Loftus
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