[Sir John Butterfill in the Chair] — A Surveillance Society?

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 3:50 pm on 19th March 2009.

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Photo of James Brokenshire James Brokenshire Shadow Minister (Home Affairs) 3:50 pm, 19th March 2009

The right hon. Gentleman has made an important point. When my colleagues in the other place debated the counter-terrorism DNA database during the passage of the Counter-Terrorism Act 2008, they made exactly that point. They tabled an amendment to ensure that people could find out what information was held on them on such databases. It is important to establish what information is there and to be clear about how to challenge that. There must be a process to ensure that arguments can be raised on the removal of such information if appropriate.

Today's debate is timely. The Government have informed the Committee of Ministers of their intention to consult and of their compliance to date with the judgment in respect of the relevant samples of S and Marper, as well as the payment of their costs and expenses. That information was considered by the Committee of Ministers today. Can the Minister say anything about the outcome of that meeting? Given this opportunity, will he update us on the Government's progress in removing the DNA of children under 10 from the DNA database, as was outlined in the Home Secretary's statement before Christmas?