I'd suggest that anyone getting a copy of the census form should simply write NO2ID on it and send it back. Perhaps then we will persuade the Scottish Government that people care about privacy and encourage them to reconsider the implementation of Entitlement Cards.
News from Scotland Against Criminalising Communities - SACC (www.sacc.org.uk
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Please circulate widely
Census forms hit Scottish households
Census forms are going out in the west of Edinburgh as part of a dry-run for the 2011 census, but the forms don't say
that filling them in is optional!
CACI - a company that supplied interrogators at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq - is playing a key role in the rehearsal, as it
will in the real thing if we don't persuade the Scottish Government to think again.
The census forms are being hand-delivered to addresses in the west of Edinburgh. Recipients are being asked either to
fill them in and return them on or after 29 March, or to visit the Sottish Census website and complete an online
questionaire using a special access code.
The forms say: "We would like you to help with our census rehearsal."
Most people know that the census is normally compulsory. Many don't realise that the polite language in the form is there
because participation in the rehearsal is NOT compulsory. There is no statement anywhere on the form that participation
is optional. People receiving SACC leaflets about the census have told us that they wouldn't have realised this if they
hadn't read our leaflet.
The Evening News reported on Thursday that journalist Kirsty Wark, TV presenter Rory Bremner, and radio presenter Grant
Stott have endosed the census. They chose a bad moment to join the circus. A US Federal Court ruled the same day that Abu
Ghraib detainees who were tortured and later released without charge can sue CACI. The company had argued that the former
detainees' claims should be dismissed on the grounds that, as a contractor to the US Army, it enjoyed official immunity.
The census form says: "No information will be disclosed to anyone outside the census organisation."
We'd certainly hope not, athough we're not quite sure what the "census organisation" actually is. John Swinney, the
Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Sustainable Growth, said in January:
"My colleagues and I absolutely understand the views of the people who have written to us about the contract and we have
thought very carefully about what we might do as a result. Since my last letter, therefore, we have set up a new contract
structure for the census in 2011, designed to minimise the role of CACI (UK) and in particular to distance it from the
personal data collected by the census."
If John Swinney thinks it's fair enough that people don't much trust CACI, then YOU really shouldn't trust CACI at all.
SACC is asking everyone to refuse to fill in the census forms.
What You Can Do
1) If you know anyone in the west of Edinburgh or in Lewis and Harris, make sure that they know that participation in the
census is optional. And make sure that they know about the involvement of CACI. Tell them the facts, or ask them to visitwww.sacc.org.uk/censusinfo
2) If you know how to contact Kirsty Wark, Rory Bremner or Grant Scott, make sure they understand exactly what they've
put their name to.
3) If you live in the west of Edinburgh or in Lewis and Harris, please contact your MSPs urgently to complain that the
census rehearsal forms don't make it clear that participation is optional. Demand that the General Register Office of
Scotland include this information with the census forms and leaflet all households taht have already receibed forms with
this information. You can contact all your list MSPs, not just your constituencey MSP - visit www.writetothem.com
4) Ask everyone you know to sign the online petition at www.sacc.org.uk/census
[www.sacc.org.uk] Our campaign is at a
critical stage. We need a show of support
What areas will receive census rehearsal forms?
Areas with postcodes beginning with EH11 1 (Merchiston), EH11 2 (Westfield/Gorgie/Dalry), EH11 3 (Broomhouse), EH11 4
(Sighthill), EH12 5 (Saughtonhall/Roseburn), EH12 6 (Murrayfield/Corstorphine) , EH12 7(Carrick Know/Broomhall), EH12 8
(Corstorphine Bank/Craigmount/Gyle), EH12 9 (South Gyle/Edinburgh Park), and EH14 4 (Riccarton)
Lewis and Harris
Lewis and Harris
Areas with postcodes beginning with HS1 2 (Stornoway), HS2 0 (Isle of Lewis), HS2 9 (Isle of Lewis), HS3 3 (Harris) and
HS5 3 (Leverburgh/Borrisdale/Rodel)
Celebs back rehearsal for census in city [edinburghnews.scotsman.com] ( Edinburgh Evening News, 19 March 2009)
Court Rules Abu Ghraib Torture Victims Can Sue Contractor CACI [www.sacc.org.uk]
Campaign Update [www.sacc.org.uk]
For more information contact Richard - firstname.lastname@example.org
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