Fair play to Theresa May. I had my doubts when she was initially appointed as Home Secretary but she has wasted little time in starting to address one of the most egregious pieces of legislation brought in by the previous government, that of the Vetting and Barring scheme.
Wednesday, 16 June 2010
I have blogged at length about the scheme previously (see here, here and here for examples) and I am not going to go over old ground too much. Suffice to say it's horribly authoritarian and in its current form is likely to massively undermine community cohesion and foster suspicion and fear as well as cost a fortune and reduce the number of people willing to help their neighbours' children.
The announcement claims that the government will "fundamentally" change the system and that any checks should be "proportionate and sensible".
Despite my enthusiasm for the fact that there is movement on the scheme, I am dubious that any changes to this scheme will result in "proportionate and sensible" checks. The whole idea is so ill-conceived that I cannot really see it working at all no matter how it is revised.
So I wait with interest to see what the changes will result in and if the government can defy my expectations. However if as I suspect it is not possible to do what May suggests then the entire thing should be scrapped.