Search This Blog

Friday, March 09, 2007

Some jitters over National Access Card

Media reports of the three days of hearings on the first national access card bill by the Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee suggest that evidence of some witnesses and the response of some Committee members has added to Government concerns about the fate of the legislation in the Senate.

In "Access your areas", Mark Metherell provides a summary of some key points that emerged in the hearings in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra over the last week. He reports that the Committee Chairman, Senator Mason, whose views will carry weight because of his expertise in this area, and others including Professor Allan Fels expressed doubts about the mandatory requirement for a photo on the face of the card, and about security and privacy of the 16million photo database. There seems to have been surprise that both the Australian Security and Intelligence Organisation and the Australian Federal Police both anticipate no great problems in accessing the database.

says that Senator Mason's hesitancy about aspects of the proposal "could be fuel for a public backlash like that which sank the proposed Australia Card in 1987".

The Senate Committee is to report next week and the Government hopes to have the Bill passed by the end of March.

The full transcript of the hearings is here, and the text of most of the 59 submissions received here.

No comments:

Post a Comment