In a stitch up between the 3 big parties Manchester MPs opted to back rushing through “emergency” mass surveillance laws.
Back in April the EU and its member countries were told to think again about mass surveillance by the European Court of Justice who found that blanket data collection violated the right to a private life. In other words, keeping a record of your text home asking whether you need to buy milk is not necessary for fighting the bad guys.
However, the government along with the Labour party cooked up a deal behind closed doors to tighten the grip of snooping powers. Not only does the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers (DRIP) Act go against human rights principles it also extended powers despite government claims that it wouldn’t.
One of the worst aspects of DRIP was that it was pushed through in just days without proper time for debate or public consultation. It was claimed there was an emergency even though the Home Office had known about the situation following the Court ruling for weeks.
Thanks to the many people who did contact MPs – it was very difficult to do as the time was short. Sadly no Manchester members of Parliament stood up for our freedoms. Graham Stringer, John Leech, Lucy Powell and Mike Kane all voted to back snooping powers. Gerald Kaufman was absent for all stages of the bill.
As all the 3 big parties failed, it’s clear why Manchester Pirate Party is needed.