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Chmilz
04-08-2009, 05:05 PM
Lots of discussion on here regarding the pros and cons of video surveillance, and the give-and-take between privacy/freedom and personal safety. Here's a new twist:


The British government has announced plans to install CCTV cameras in 20,000 UK homes.


The UK government this week announced (http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/08/britain-to-put-cctv-cameras-inside-private-homes/) that it will spend 400 million ($668 million) on the installation and monitoring of CCTV cameras citizens in their own homes. Aimed at problem or antisocial families, the cameras are there to make sure children go to bed on time, eat well balanced meals and do their homework.
Those that read my posts know I'm against surveillance already, and this is exactly why. Every time we allow any big-brother like action, we get one step closer to this, until we're no longer able to fight it, because dissent will be captured and quelled even in the privacy of our homes. I've been saying it a lot, that the day will come where we'll have allowed so many little baby steps that surveillance will make it into our homes, and when that happens, we're doomed. Well folks, it's-a-comin', thanks to the Big Brother British Gubberment.

I'm no conspiracy theorist, but too many people seem to be ok with giving up all their civil liberties in the name of safety, until one day we'll no longer be free to do anything at all, but will be guaranteed a safe life that's not worth living.

Do we want to keep going this route in Edmonton/Canada? How much surveillance is enough? Too much?

edmonton daily photo
04-08-2009, 05:10 PM
a bit more balanced repot on the subject.

24/7 CCTV Surveillance in Homes of 20,000 Families
THOUSANDS of the worst families in England are to be put in “sin bins” in a bid to change their bad behaviour, Ed Balls announced yesterday.

The Children’s Secretary set out 400million plans to put 20,000 problem families under 24-hour CCTV super-vision in their own homes.

They will be monitored to ensure that children attend school, go to bed on time and eat proper meals.

Private security guards will also be sent round to carry out home checks, while parents will be given help to combat drug and alcohol addiction.

Around 2,000 families have gone through these Family Intervention Projects so far.

But ministers want to target 20,000 more in the next two years, with each costing between 5,000 and 20,000 – a potential total bill of 400million.

Ministers hope the move will reduce the number of youngsters who get drawn into crime because of their chaotic family lives, as portrayed in Channel 4 comedy drama Shameless.

Sin bin projects operate in half of council areas already but Mr Balls wants every local authority to fund them.

He said: “This is pretty tough and non-negotiable support for families to get to the root of the problem. There should be Family Intervention Projects in every local authority area because every area has families that need support.”

But Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling said: “This is all much too little, much too late.

“This Government has been in power for more than a decade during which time anti-social behaviour, family breakdown and problems like alcohol abuse and truancy have just got worse and worse.”


Mr Balls also said responsible parents who make sure their children behave in school will get new rights to complain about those who allow their children to disrupt lessons.

Pupils and their families will have to sign behaviour contracts known as Home School Agreements before the start of every year, which will set out parents’ duties to ensure children behave and do their homework.

The updated Youth Crime Action Plan also called for a crackdown on violent girl gangs as well as drug and alcohol abuse among young women.

But a decision to give ministers new powers to intervene with failing local authority Youth Offending Teams was criticised by council leaders.

Les Lawrence, of the Local Government Association, said they did “crucial” work and such intervention was “completely unnecessary”.

Chmilz
04-08-2009, 05:17 PM
I can't think of any good ones off hand, but studies have shown that kids are becoming anti-social because of the surveillance and heavy-handedness. They're rebelling. This is just perpetuating that cycle.

edmonton daily photo
04-08-2009, 05:21 PM
Personally I am fien with this.

If you, as a parent, want to use drugs, abuse alchol and not look after the children you brought into this world... then yoo deserve this.

Next point.. If this keeps more kids at home instead of state care then I REALLY REALLY approve.

Last Point.. It seems that these famillies are either caught breaking the law or they are riding a very very fine line..When you break the law rights can and often are taken away.

Chmilz
04-08-2009, 05:29 PM
This is that baby step to get to the next level. Kids too fat? Surveillance in your home to make sure you feed them broccoli. Wife fell down the stairs and gets checked out by a doctor? Surveillance in the home in case she's being abused.

It will happen, until the day comes that the government will have a camera feed checking the consistency of your turd as you use the throne. For your protection.

DTrobotnik
04-08-2009, 05:37 PM
On trains and in public spaces for security? OK. CCTV in private homes will not solve any problems. Down with Big Brother in the UK!

RTA
04-08-2009, 05:50 PM
But we already have cameras at ATMs, in office buildings, malls, and some streetcorners,...so why not private homes? After all, if the streetcorner cameras can't capture crimes that happens behind closed doors, the next logical step is to put cameras behind those closed doors, right?

BTW, this is tongue-firmly-in-cheek. I'm very anti-surveillance and those who don't believe in the "slippery slope" that is surveillance best take very careful note of this story.

kcantor
04-08-2009, 05:52 PM
On trains and in public spaces for security? OK. CCTV in private homes will not solve any problems. Down with Big Brother in the UK!
and the "canadian solution" to the same systemic issues is to let them fester until they get too bad to ignore and then go in and take the children from the home and dump them in foster care or group homes or worse (and that's if they haven't already taken to the streets in order to get away). somehow i think that's at least as "intrusive" on the family unit and certainly hasn't proven to be any more successful in breaking the cycle rather than perpetuating it. perhaps the family unit - including the children - could be left with some say as to whether they choose to participate in a monitoring/support program or default to an alternate solution but in either case on both sides of the pond the "alternate status quo solutions" are clearly not working. and at the end of the day if the choice is between the "rights" of the parents and the "rights" of the children, my vote's with the children every time.

edmonton daily photo
04-08-2009, 05:56 PM
From what I now of UK social policies.. It is also likely these people areon some sortof monetary assistance. I have no prob with the gov't ensuring that people are meeting the requirements of that assistance.

RTA
04-08-2009, 06:04 PM
I have no prob with the gov't ensuring that people are meeting the requirements of that assistance.

And there is exactly the "Slippery slope" I referred to earlier. "I am ok with surveillance for reason X" becomes "well, we have surveillance for X, why not Y?" becomes "Well, we have cameras on X and Y, but Z is now a problem, so I'm ok with it on X, Y, and Z."

As we find more "problems" our answer is to add more surveillance because previous problems were "solved" (were they really?) by surveillance. If we keep allowing it to slip into more and more places, we'll soon have run out of places. And it will have been our fault because we thought it was a good idea at the time, and hey we already had it so we were ok with more.

edmonton daily photo
04-08-2009, 06:07 PM
if thesed people are recieving, for lack of a better ter, wellfare or have had legal problems.. then they have forgon their rightsor they are willing give up their rights in exchange for the assisstance.

If you don't want this to happen to you, then don't seek out wellfare and raise your kids.

This is nothing more than house arrest

RTA
04-08-2009, 06:12 PM
^ Sure, it sounds so simple, but then it will become "Well, we already have these cameras watching these families, why not cameras watching other families?"

If you don't think that could happen, just look at how we keep excusing and justifying more surveillance in the ways I've described, even now in this thread.

edmonton daily photo
04-08-2009, 06:13 PM
^ Sure, it sounds so simple, but then it will become "Well, we already have these cameras watching these families, why not cameras watching other families?"

If you don't think that could happen, just look at how we keep excusing and justifying more surveillance in the ways I've described.

just as gay marriage will pave the way for polygamy, common give me a break..

kcantor
04-08-2009, 06:13 PM
I have no prob with the gov't ensuring that people are meeting the requirements of that assistance.

And there is exactly the "Slippery slope" I referred to earlier. "I am ok with surveillance for reason X" becomes "well, we have surveillance for X, why not Y?" becomes "Well, we have cameras on X and Y, but Z is now a problem, so I'm ok with it on X, Y, and Z."

As we find more "problems" our answer is to add more surveillance because previous problems were "solved" (were they really?) by surveillance. If we keep allowing it to slip into more and more places, we'll soon have run out of places. And it will have been our fault because we thought it was a good idea at the time, and hey we already had it so we were ok with more.
so if we want to deal with hypotheticals (which is what your slippery slope is) let me ask you this:

if you were a 9 year old in the kind of family unit that is being offered a choice as to whether to participate in a program like this or not and you knew where the "not" would take you, what would your choice be? a hopefully reasonable chance for a reasonable life or the "right" for your parents to raise you as they see "fit" which is probably how their parents raised them and how you will one day raise your children?

Chmilz
04-08-2009, 06:14 PM
Forget the surveillance for a moment... who's to say that the mandates put on these families will fix anything? For the parents out there, do you let some government experts tell you how to raise your family? Not every family is the same. There is no formula for raising perfect children in a perfect home. Obviously there are some things that work, but to be force-fed a prescription for a perfect family and then be monitored while doing it will likely have these people just resent the government even more, while putting on the dog and pony show they're supposed to in exchange for the handouts they're been given. The people being monitored will likely become the ones that one day end up bombing a government building out of frustration and oppression. Like I said, perpetuating the cycle.

edmonton daily photo
04-08-2009, 06:20 PM
we are not talking about to spank or not to spank.

We aretalking about some ofthe worst famlly units in the UK.
Worst seems to be decided by substance abuse, Social services issues, child's school performance and attendance history as well as propper nutrition/hygein.

No one seems to be saying you have to put your kid to bed "this way" but instead it leeds me to believe they are monitoring that it is done and done in healthy way.

No one is born a good parent, When I think of some of the drop outs i had to endure in small town alberta my mind reals

kcantor
04-08-2009, 06:26 PM
Forget the surveillance for a moment... who's to say that the mandates put on these families will fix anything? For the parents out there, do you let some government experts tell you how to raise your family? Not every family is the same. There is no formula for raising perfect children in a perfect home. Obviously there are some things that work, but to be force-fed a prescription for a perfect family and then be monitored while doing it will likely have these people just resent the government even more, while putting on the dog and pony show they're supposed to in exchange for the handouts they're been given. The people being monitored will likely become the ones that one day end up bombing a government building out of frustration and oppression. Like I said, perpetuating the cycle.
i don't believe this is about "how to raise your family" because, as you noted, there is no formula for raising perfect children in a perfect home.

there is however a clearly recognized formula for raising damaged children in a damaging home.

and those two things are not the same.

addressing the second of those circumstances does not intrude upon the first. this is not about a "thou shall" which can be both discretionary and grey - it is about a "thou shall not" which can pretty clearly be black and white once you accept the fact that the children are "more important" than the parents.

there are certain things and certain circumstances to which no child should be subjected. period. and if a cctv option furthers that objective and its use is accompanied by informed consent then i'm happy to support putting the best interest of the child first when it comes to "thou shall not".

DTrobotnik
04-08-2009, 07:46 PM
I believe what's really needs monitoring is the institutions which fail to rehabilitate repeat offenders or "problem" individuals. This seems more like a fear tactic to force obedience on people under watch instead of naturally encouraging and growing change within that person(s).

LindseyT
04-08-2009, 09:46 PM
Got to agree with edp on this one. When your a perpetual suck on society you should have to give up something in return to ensure our money is well spent. Be it families such as those discussed, street rats, or something else.

The bleeding harts out there always respond that these people are in these situations because of some unfortunate decisions...well, these cameras should tell if thats the case. If cameras prove thats not the case, then lets cut them off. bring it on.

RTA
04-08-2009, 09:50 PM
just as gay marriage will pave the way for polygamy, common give me a break..

Gay marriage and polygamy are two entirely different issues from one another.

Surveillance is surveillance and is leading to more surveillance.

RTA
04-08-2009, 10:01 PM
so if we want to deal with hypotheticals (which is what your slippery slope is) let me ask you this:

if you were a 9 year old in the kind of family unit that is being offered a choice as to whether to participate in a program like this or not and you knew where the "not" would take you, what would your choice be? a hopefully reasonable chance for a reasonable life or the "right" for your parents to raise you as they see "fit" which is probably how their parents raised them and how you will one day raise your children?

I don't see it as a black-and-white, surveillance-or-bad-childhood-NOW-CHOOSE situation.

Let's put it another way, is the lack of government surveillance in the home the source of the problem? If it were I imagine that society in the UK would be far worse off than it is now. If it is not the problem, then how is adding surveillance the solution?

If parents aren't motivated to raise their kids properly without being watched constantly, is watching them constantly going to make them better parents, or will it simply cause them to just act like better parents for the sake of the camera? Going through the motions of parenting for the sake of an observer, and actually being a good parent aren't the same thing.

Dusty Bear
05-08-2009, 08:16 AM
Got to agree with edp on this one. When your a perpetual suck on society you should have to give up something in return to ensure our money is well spent. Be it families such as those discussed, street rats, or something else.

The bleeding harts out there always respond that these people are in these situations because of some unfortunate decisions...well, these cameras should tell if thats the case. If cameras prove thats not the case, then lets cut them off. bring it on.

Let's get this straight - Lindsey are you, of all people, actually saying that in this case the government knows best?

Just want to be sure. ;)

edmonton daily photo
05-08-2009, 04:32 PM
just as gay marriage will pave the way for polygamy, common give me a break..

Gay marriage and polygamy are two entirely different issues from one another.

Surveillance is surveillance and is leading to more surveillance.

It's stillthe old "it paves the way excuse" used time and time again.

It's way way way over the top.

edmonton daily photo
05-08-2009, 04:35 PM
I think to understand this topic the forum really needs to learn about Tony Blair and his wellfare/EI reforms.

The UK is becoming big on social program recipients becoming accountable. It's a theme that many people here also want.. why do we pay the same health care taxes when I don't use the system and person x over there overeats and smokes allthe time.

Thusands o dollars are spent educating or on rehab, but after that program is done there is very little follow through. Anyone specializing in adult education knows there has to be continual review done after the initial learning.

RTA
05-08-2009, 06:25 PM
It's stillthe old "it paves the way excuse" used time and time again.

It's way way way over the top.

Except that it's pretty clearly happening in this case. I'm actually shocked that this isn't obvious.

LindseyT
05-08-2009, 09:59 PM
Got to agree with edp on this one. When your a perpetual suck on society you should have to give up something in return to ensure our money is well spent. Be it families such as those discussed, street rats, or something else.

The bleeding harts out there always respond that these people are in these situations because of some unfortunate decisions...well, these cameras should tell if thats the case. If cameras prove thats not the case, then lets cut them off. bring it on.

Let's get this straight - Lindsey are you, of all people, actually saying that in this case the government knows best?

Just want to be sure. ;)

Knows best, maybe not. Knows more than a bunch of chronic social service user losers, yes.

I just want to make sure people who "I" am supporting on an ongoing basis are doing their part. If their not, then lets cut them off and see how they like January.

Replacement
06-08-2009, 08:49 AM
A few comments to the thread and sorry for missing this earlier.

First of all video surveillance would not "keep kids out of care" it would increase the number of kids taken into care through increased detection and increased potential video evidence.

Second its deplorable that Family intervention programs would be made contingent on agreeing to the video monitoring. This is clearly coerced assistance and runs contrary to a stated wish to help families.

Third comments to the effect of "they deserve it" fail to understand that families that would be impacted are not in some cases criminally charged and that their detection would be through Income Support, and Childrens Service agencies which are not upheld to the same "Innocent until proven guilty" standard as is the case in criminal law and jurisdiction. Childrens Services agents typically only have to find "probable cause" of say abuse or contravention. Theres no requirement to find "guilty beyond a reasonable doubt"
In these human rights issues these distinctions need to be made crystal clear.

Fourth these are interventions designed out of clear political devise rather than ones that would consult or work hand in hand with professionals that work in the field. I would wonder how Social Work Associations for instance in the UK would feel about these measures. Or that they would have to implement measures that they likely feel are draconian. But social workers probably have it coming too for their choice in profession...<sarcasm>

Finally I can't help but detect a convenient social class dilemma battle at work here. A ruling class not comprised of anybody that would be exposed to these measures, and voted in by those unlikely to be exposed to these measures, has no difficulty exposing a different social class to these measures..
Which begs the question of how deplorable it would be if the situation was reversed and a socialist govt imposed the use of the same video cameras to measure copious consumption and say lack of recycling and punished offenders livelihood.
In both extremes this is deplorable social class politics at work here. Devised through social class eyes.

I can't wait for behavior modification to be applied to this and parents being put on electro-convulsive shock inducements..put your kid to bed, put your kid to bed,...zap....serves you right, vote for labor, serves you right, vote for labor..zap

Delicious irony that this is taking place in the UK.