The revelations resulting from Edward Snowden’s decision to blow the whistle on the surveillance of people across the world shocked Europe. Green MEPs have safeguarded the right of all citizens to privacy. Yet too often, the European Union has been complicit in handing information relating to ordinary citizens to those who ought to have no business with it. Too many MEPs have sided with governments against citizens.
Our MEP will continue to fight creeping surveillance and will:
- Support the implementation of data protection legislation at the EU level
- Push for an EU digital bill of rights, to protect ‘net freedom and neutrality.
- Push for the repeal of the Data Retention Directive, which compels telecommunications companies to keep a raft of personal data on European citizens.
- Campaign to stop Air Passenger Name Records from being shared with any foreign governments on a blanket basis and oppose other EU-US agreements aimed at expanding the Pentagon’s ability to monitor citizens.
In April Green MSP Patrick Harvie launched “Digital Rights Are Civil Rights”, highlighting extent of government agencies’ surveillance and on the back of a poll for the Scottish Greens showing public concern about the recording abilities of modern gadgets. In a poll of over 1,000 Scots over 70 per cent said there should be restrictions on people using gadgets for recording in public where others don’t know they are being recorded.
This also follows Green MEP proposals to ensure that Internet access cannot just be provided by established telecommunications firms – and that the ‘content’ users receive must be genuinely open; not just restricted to those services chosen by ISPs. Subsequently, the European Parliament backed a series of Green amendments to proposed rules on electronic communications to ensure ‘net neutrality’.