Should the UK use mandatory ID cards to discourage small boat crossings? Poll of the week

Yahoo UK’s poll of the week lets you vote and express your feelings on one of the hot topics of the week. After 72 hours the poll closes and, every Friday, we’ll publish and analyze the results, giving readers the chance to see how polarizing a topic is now and whether their opinion is in line with other Yahoo UK readers.

David Blunkett has proposed the introduction of identification cards to reduce small boat crossings.  (UK Parliament/Getty Images)

David Blunkett has proposed the introduction of identification cards to reduce small boat crossings. (UK Parliament/Getty Images)

Lord David Blunkett has said that compulsory ID cards should be introduced to tackle small boat crossings across the English Channel.

Labor peers have urged Sir Keir Starmer to introduce the policy if he wins the next general election to reduce illegal immigration and the tragedy of people smugglers.

He suggested that all workers should be required to submit their identity cards to employers before being allowed to work.

As home secretary under Tony Blair, Blunkett proposed the idea of ​​mandatory identity documents in 2001 after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. He suggested that, given the Tory government’s Rwanda scheme, smugglers would encourage those crossing the English Channel not to claim asylum.

“They’ll say, ‘We’ll send you across to the UK, then we’ll call this number, you’ll get a job and accommodation’, and then they’ll go into the sub-economy,” he told The Times.

What do you think? Would mandatory ID cards make a difference and prevent illegal migration? Let us know in the polls below.

Come back on Friday to read the results and analysis.

The Labor Party has discussed the prospect of ID cards in recent years, and shadow immigration minister Stephen Kinnock told Times Radio in November 2022 that such a scheme was being looked at “very carefully, that very careful. He said he would reassure the public that “we are in control of our borders”.

Blair’s Labor government introduced legislation for national identity cards in 2006, arguing that a national identity register would be an opportunity to protect people’s identities from fraud and prevent illegal migration and terrorism thanks to advances in biometric and scanning technology. iris and fingerprint.

He said it was a “modernity” issue, rather than a civil liberties issue, arguing that many people give private companies personal data on a daily basis anyway.

Legislation for compulsory ID cards was passed in 2006 but, in 2009, it was announced that they would not be compulsory for UK citizens The legislation was finally repealed by a Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government in 2010, and the deputy prime minister said -minister Nick Clegg at the time: “The wasteful, bureaucratic and intrusive ID card system shows everything that has been wrong with the government in recent years.”

Civil rights groups have long been wary of the possibility of national identity schemes. Responding to a proposal for “digital identity cards” in 2020, campaign group Liberty warned against “massive central databases” that would record “all our interactions with the state”.

“This personal data could be accessed by a variety of government agencies or even private corporations, possibly in combination with other surveillance technologies such as facial recognition,” the group said.

Liberty said it would be “more intrusive, uncertain and discriminatory” than Labour’s old scheme, which the group said cost the public £4.6 billion before it was scrapped.

In 2018, Tory backbencher Jacob Rees-Mogg told LBC Radio: “If you have ID cards, a policeman can ask you at any time who you are and what you’re doing. That’s no way of Britain.”

Making his case for national ID cards, Kinnock said it would help the UK keep track of how many people are in the country at any given time. He told Times Radio that it was “extraordinary” that there were thought to be three million EU nationals in the UK before Brexit when it turned out to be five million.

Supporters of ID cards argue that requiring them for any employment will stop illegal immigrants from drifting into the informal economy. French authorities blame the UK’s lack of an identification system for the number of people crossing the Channel from Calais.

However, when discussing the idea in 2006, journalist and author Henry Porter argued: “It will make life harder for illegal immigrants, but there is little evidence to suggest that it will it really deters people-smugglers and desperate migrants.”

Arguing against Blair’s proposals, Saoirse warned that because of the disproportionate use of stop and search against ethnic minority groups, ID cards would open up the potential for racial discrimination by police.

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