Home Secretary Jacqui Smith:
Ms Smith also used her speech to take a swipe at the suggestion by David Cameron, the Tory leader, and David Davis, the shadow home secretary, that Britain was a “broken society”, branding the claim “just plain wrong”.
“The two Davids. What a pair they make,” she said.
“While one was on manoeuvers with the Territorial Army, the other was plotting midnight raids on Eton’s tuck shop …
“But I’ll tell you what. Neither of them has got a grip on crime, on its causes or on its consequences.”
Ms Smith added: “Tolerance and freedom. Fairness and respect, rights and responsibilities. That’s what Labour stands for. Protecting communities and securing Britain’s future.”
While David was raiding tuck shops, and the other David was manoeuvring with the TA, Jacqui Smith fought crime on the front line, by teaching Economics at Arrow Vale High School in Redditch from 1986 to 1988, followed by a post at Worcester Sixth Form College before becoming Head of Economics and GNVQ Co-ordinator at Haybridge High School, Hagley in 1990, later being elected MP for Redditch at the 1997 general election (Wikipedia).
She is zero-tolerant of anti-social behaviour and its causes, burglary, drug and alcohol misuses, the Pope isn’t Protestant, and bears relieve themselves in wooded areas.
A union is warning that the privacy of sensitive information could be put at risk by a statistics agency IT deal.
Proposals by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to outsource its IT functions to Fujitsu Services have prompted fears from the civil service union over confidentiality of data.
The Public and Commercial Services Union expressed concerns that plans to hand over work to the company, which is part of the Fujitsu multinational group, may risk the disclosure of private information as a result of the USA Patriot Act.
Under the terms of the Act, companies with operations in the America have to provide personal data to the US government. The union fears this could make UK companies and individuals less willing to provide commercially and personally sensitive data to the high-profile ONS.
Home Office Security Minister Tony McNulty has admitted the government made mistakes in response to the 7 July 2005 bomb attacks in London.
He said the government should not have treated the Muslim Council of Britain as the only voice of British Muslims.
That’s wierd, because at the time loads of British Muslims were saying exactly that.
At a Labour Party conference fringe meeting, he warned against rushing into laws in response to a terror threat.
Except of course for Dutch Auction Detention, the exciting Home Office game, which Home Secretary Jacqui Smith talked about only the day before.
Echoing Tony Blair’s phrase on dealing with terrorism, he said: “Actually the rules of the game haven’t changed.”
Mr McNulty told the meeting in Bournemouth: “I think we have made mistakes since 7/7.”
He said one of these mistakes was Mr Blair’s argument that people must be ready to accept reductions in their civil liberties in the fight against terror because “the rules of the game have changed”.
An argument readily accepted by most Labour MPs, including… yes, including Mr McNulty, a minister in the Home Office at the time.
Within weeks of the 7 July attacks, Mr Blair unveiled a raft of legislative measures to tackle terrorists, including tougher deportation and extradition powers, a new offence of glorifying terrorism and powers to close a place of worship.
But in his speech on Wednesday, Mr McNulty suggested that ministers
And Labour MPs!
had been too ready to adopt exceptional measures which could impact on the liberties enjoyed as part of the British way of life.
He distanced himself from the phrase “war on terror” stressing that terrorism should be tackled through “normal” rather than “exceptional” means.
It was all that nasty Mr Blair’s fault, honest, I’ve only been in the job five minutes guv.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has said the time has come to look again at extending the 28-day limit on holding terrorism suspects.
She told a fringe meeting at Labour’s party conference prevention of terrorism outweighed any potential damage to community relations.
But Ms Smith ruled out extending the controversial period to 90 days.
This is about political expediency, not justice. Let’s look as if we’re doing something about terrorism – it’s been a week since we last announced something. What can we pick? Ah yes, detention without charge.
Keith Vaz, chairman of the Commons home affairs committee, said the police must prove that they need the extra time.
And then we need to consider the pros and cons.
Let’s not just pick a number out of the air and run with it.