Monday, May 21, 2007

Doctors asked to shop patients?

The Times has had a document leaked to it from Whitehall. It is not hard to see why as it is bonkers.

The proposal is that doctors, council staff and charity workers be placed under a statutory duty to report cases where they believe that someone is at risk of either committing a serious violent crime or becoming a victim of one.

Apparently information sharing could have prevented the Soham murders. Well yes it could have done, but that would have been information shared or retained about crimes allegedly committed that the police were aware of without the need for anyone else to be under any duty to do anything at all. The lack of information on Ian Huntley was because his original local police had not got a clue about their duties under the Data Protection act and so shredded what would have been useful intelligence because they were not intelligent at all.

There are of course a number of practical problems with this stupid and ill thought out proposals like who is going to monitor all the extra information?

However there is another one of principle, and that is that doctors and many charity workers work on the basis of client confidentiality. If they did not they would not get many clients including the ones the government is looking for.

We have one other problem though, and it is this. We are not looking for criminals here, we are looking for potential criminals. If only the police were not so hamstrung by paperwork then they might have a better chance of catching the criminals who already have committed a crime. So why worry about those who have yet to commit one? Learn how to crawl before you enter a marathon.

The really scary thing is that this government seems to be able to stoop to any authoritarian low just to look like it is doing something.

We are sleepwalking into a police state. Frankly I don't like it.


Anonymous said...

Ha mince. The BNP Would ban us from voting or being anti BNP. Yet you as a torry say labour are briging in a police state. I say its mince. I am a labour supporter but the european court of human rights is tying our hands behind our back - we can no longer take the neccesery measuers to hold people without charge because the right of suspected terrorists or terrortits is more important than the right of British people to feel safe. I dont think terrorism is the biggest threat in the world but we need to use tough measures to stop it. Shame on the judges for rejecting holding people without charge. The average Citezen is very unliekly to be locked up. I thought torry's agreed in locking up terroiss without charge? Obvously they cant even do the democratic things right let alone issues such as social responsibility where I disagree with them on.

Benedict White said...

Anonymous, without wishing to sound offensive, clearly you are stupid.

For a start, the fact that the brown shirts may want to bring in a police state should not stop us guarding against some fascist bunch of ignorant pricks such as yourselves doing the same.

Secondly, us tories party has been the party of power for more of the last 300 years than not, in that time we have learnt what does and does not work.

I have learnt the lessons of history as far as terrorism goes, you on the other hand appear to be totally ignorant.

There are plenty of measures that all parties could agree on, but alas, Labour would far rather do the wrong thing.