GSLP-Libs Say GSD Policy Of Public Housing List Would Be “Breach Of Data Protection Laws”

The GSLP-Libs say the GSD have “committed to breach data protection legislation” as part of their manifesto for the upcoming General Election.

A statement continued: “The GSD have in their manifesto committed to publishing the housing waiting list online so that everyone can see everyone else’s position on the housing waiting list. This is a clear and absolute breach of the Data Protection Act and to do so would be against the law.

“Historically, when the Housing Department was based at City Hall, the housing waiting lists were displayed on a board. This was a breach of the Data Protection Act at that time too. People would attend the City Hall to check what position they were on the list because they had no other means of obtaining this information. In order to stop this practice, and as part of our online eGov services, we introduced the facility whereby every single applicant was able to check their position on the Housing Waiting list online. By the addition of this feature, we removed the boards as they were no longer necessary and at the same time, we stopped the long held practice of breaching the Data Protection Act.”

Leader of the GSLP Liberals, Fabian Picardo, expressed surprise at the commitment, saying: “Earlier this week, the leader of the GSD Keith Azopardi made a mistake about the law in relation to the minimum wage. Whoever has drafted this particular commitment to publish the waiting lists has either not noticed or just misunderstands the law around Data Protection. Data Protection laws underpin our individual rights to privacy and are a cornerstone of our online gaming business. Misunderstanding those rules is a danger to the continued growth and prosperity of our nation. The GSD would do well to explain further its position in this regard as we consider that doing any more than what we already do in terms of letting those on the waiting lists query their own positions, will fall foul of data protection legislation and put a GSD Government unnecessarily at risk of expensive claims. It can underdo the finding of Gibraltar’s data adequacy and this would be a huge blow to our gaming and financial services industry.”