Guardian behind openDemocracy, as usual

3 May 2005
Today's Guardian follows five days behind the 28 April edition of openDemocracy in publishing Aubrey Mayer on urgency of political action on climate change (see here).

In his Guardian essay, Aubrey Meyer calls on Tony Blair to act, but in his first piece, published on openDemocracy, Aubrey Meyer appeals to the logic of a far higher power: the US Senate. The latter's Byrd-Hagel resolution, Aubrey Meyer argues, leads will-he, nill-he, to contraction and convergence.

But, writing in the openDemocracy forum, Benito Mueller warns against chosing strange bedfellows (see here for a previous Mueller intervention on openDemocracy).

Yesterday, the main editorial in The Observer (the Guardian's sister paper) argued that the politics of climate change is one of the most important issues facing the international community (see here). Much of the editorial follows quite closely the arguments in a 21 April post in this blog.

The Guardian also features the Green MEP Caroline Lucas ("the Green party doesn't expect to form the government on May 6", she writes. Oh, really?).

Caspar Henderson

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals

To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.

By adding my name to this campaign, I authorise openDemocracy and Foxglove to keep me updated about their important work.

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