Aussies support national ID system

Published 7 February 2006

Aussies tend to be independent sorts, but they now support a mandatory biometric national ID card

Many adults in Australia support enacting a compulsory identity card system, according to a Newspoll published in The Australian. Fifty-three percent of respondents favor the introduction of the cards, while 31 per cent disagree. In July 2005, following the terrorist attacks in London, deputy prime minister Mark Vaile announced that the Australian government would explore the concept of a national identity card system. Opposition leader Kim Beazley called on the government to address other concerns, saying, “We need to do a serious review now of our transport security. There are big holes in maritime security, aviation and rail security and it’s four years on since September 11 and there should not be those holes. So I think that’s much more important than the ID card. Remember, that the four London bombers would all have qualified for the British ID card.”

On 1 February Australian attorney general Philip Ruddock said an announcement on an identity card system would arrive “when I’m fully satisfied about the issues that we want examined.”

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