Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Letter urges rejection of GIRFEC and data mining in Scotland

From Schoolhouse:|

"This letter from a Schoolhouse member to MSPs, urging rejection of the data mining and named person provisions within the Children and Young People Bill which is expected to be nodded through at Holyrood tomorrow, is reproduced below with the author’s permission. It does not necessarily reflect the views of Schoolhouse, but judging by their comments, the 2790 people who have now signed our petition would appear to concur with its sentiments."

Dear MSP
Re: CHYP Bill / Graveheart

Since we both know that my raising concerns with you is almost as pointless an exercise as bothering to vote in elections, I won’t waste too much of your time or mine."

"Just for the record, I am writing to urge you to vote against the CHYP Bill on Wednesday since its provisions for routine data gathering and sharing and the compulsory imposition of a named person on every child in Scotland with no opt-out breach both Article 8 of the ECHR and the UK Data Protection Act. I have yet to see the Scottish Government’s legal advice, if indeed it exists."

"It is abhorrent to me that the Government and any right minded MSP should consider such provisions to be remotely acceptable in a free society and inconceivable that they should have ignored the advice of senior counsel and a myriad of legal and social work experts, while completely dismissing the views of parents, children and young people who do not want their privacy routinely invaded. So much for getting it right for every child; but that’s not what GIRFEC is about and never has been. Getting Information Recorded For Every Citizen is a much more accurate description."

"I feel obliged to bring to your attention the fact that Bill Alexander has gone on record as
claiming there have been no complaints by parents in Highland about GIRFEC and the named person when I have personally been copied a catalogue of such complaints. He is quoted as saying: "The system has been operating formally for four years, and in that time not a single parent has raised any concerns [about it being intrusive]." Did he file all these parental complaints under ‘misunderstandings’, or were they just binned for convenience? Complainants who have been effectively silenced by Mr Alexander’s refusal to acknowledge serious concerns about the abuse of power by named persons and other professionals contend that misleading the public in this way amounts to gross misconduct. Having seen the nature of these complaints, it is difficult to disagree, but dissembling would appear to be part of the job description for any aspiring GIRFEC Gauleiter."

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