Queen’s Speech: Privacy and Rights Campaigning Group criticises Government’s anti-freedom legislative agenda

Embargo: Immediate 

Responding to the Queen’s Speech, Jim Killock, Executive Director of Open Rights Group said:

On the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill: 

“Prime Minister’s controversial Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill undermines any credibility as a self-identified libertarian. This Orwellian Bill will create a Digital Police State, with sweeping powers to gather personal information for law enforcement purposes. This is extremely likely to end up causing discrimination and ‘predictive policing’ of marginalised communities. The Prime Minister is well advised not to give in to Home Office’s authoritarian instincts.” 

On Government’s plan to introduce mandatory Voter ID Cards:  

“Many people do not have a Passport or a driving license, so the Government will have to spend billions of pounds to create yet another database that may have severe consequences for our privacy. Yet the problem it is allegedly trying to solve – voters fraudulently casting votes – does not seem to exist.

“This Government is quickly becoming one of the most anti-freedom Governments of recent times.” 

On Online Safety Bill:

“Treating legal speech as inherently dangerous and demanding that it must be controlled and policed by Facebook and Google should chill us all. The result is all too likely to be automated removal of comment and debate that would never be banned in a court of law. Platforms need to be accountable to independent bodies, but should not be dictated to by a state regulator. We are stunned that some in the press and politicians are campaigning for speech regulation that they would never accept if applied to themselves.

“This is a Litmus test for the Conservative Party and the Prime Minister over how committed they are to the principles of free speech.”



Press 07951265812 / press@openrightsgroup.org