‘Coercion’ tactics in secret memo

By Tom Latchem

Young drivers are to be FORCED to get ID cards when they apply for their first licences.

The People has seen sensational leaked Home Office documents revealing the secret plan.

It says newdrivers and those applying for fresh passports will be “coerced” into getting the controversial identity cards.

PM Gordon Brown has always said the scheme will be voluntary unless Parliament decides otherwise.

But last night shadow Home Secretary David Davis stormed: “This is an outrageous plan.

The Government has seen their ID card proposals stagger from shambles to shambles.


“Now they plan to use coercion in a desperate attempt to bolster a failed policy.”


Civil rights group Liberty said: “This memo confirms that compulsion is the ultimate ambition of this scheme.And it can be achieved by stealth even without the need for further parliamentary debate.”


The secret document from the Identity and Passport Service is headed: “Options analysis – outcome.”


It says: “Various forms of coercion, such as designation of the application process for identity documents issued by UK ministers (eg passports) are an option to stimulate applications in a manageable way.


“There are advantages to designation of documents associated with particular target groups, eg young people who may be applying for their first driving licence.” The report says “universal compulsion should not be used unless absolutely necessary” because of the ID controversy.


Phil Booth of pressure group No2ID said: “This makes ID cards even more devastating and scary than we thought.


“I thank The People for bringing this to the nation’s attention.”


AHome Office spokeswoman said: “We do not comment on leaked documents.


“But it’s right our first priority is to consider where ID cards can be of the greatest benefit.” Compulsory cards for foreigners living here begins this year. They will be available to Brits who want one from 2009.


Last week it was revealed students will be targeted in 2010 in a plan linked to new bank accounts and student loans.


But a compulsory scheme is unlikely until 2012 after the next election because Mr Brown knows he would never get it past MPs. Many want the scheme dumped after the scandal of personal data losses, including the details of 25 million child benefit claimants.