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Landmark legislation will protect civil liberties

May 2, 2012 12:44 PM

Jenny Willott, Cardiff Central's Liberal Democrat MP, has welcomed the passing into law of the Protection of Freedoms Act, which received its Royal Assent today, as a landmark moment in the fight for civil liberties.

The Act, which the Lib Dems called for in opposition, will roll back some of the worst abuses of power by the Labour Government. Changes in the legislation include preventing schools from finger-printing children, stopping councils using anti-terrorism laws to snoop on people, and ending the storage of DNA from innocent people.

Jenny, who has long campaigned for an end to the retention of innocent people on the DNA database, said that this was a victory for the thousands of innocent people who have been treated like criminals, saying:

"The Protection of Freedoms Act will finally turn the tide of the over-bearing security state created by Labour. This legislation is something Lib Dems have called for since 2001 and I am very pleased that, thanks to Lib Dems in Government, it is now a reality.

"I am particularly pleased that never again will an innocent person who has been mistakenly arrested and not charged or convicted be treated like a criminal.

"But as well as protecting our freedom, this Act will make life easier for people. I'm really pleased that this legislation reduces the bureaucracy around CRB checks, so people can move from one job to another without expensive, wasteful checks that prevent small charities hiring new workers or volunteers."