The Government is Storing Your Baby’s DNA: Did You Know/Consent?

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New law may create largest DNA database in Canada

Recent revelations that B.C.’s health authorities are secretly storing and testing children’s DNA without parental consent, combined with provisions of Bill 11 that allow B.C.’s Minister of Health to gather information like these DNA records without notice or consent, have resulted in a call from the BCCLA for the government to retract the bill and the health authority to destroy the records. The new law and the records combined may create the largest DNA database in Canada.

via BC Civil Liberties Association.

OK, let’s go on this:

1. I’m an organ donor. I happily filled out the form and sent it in. I’m glad to donate my organs when I die. I respect people’s right to choose not to as well. I also appreciate that I get to pick what my organs can be used for. I like living in a free society.

2. I am a teacher and have had criminal record checks done, which have included finger printing. I am not a fan of the black ink on my fingers, but I had no problem following the rules of the check for a greater good. I was impressed that I was informed that my fingerprints would be destroyed after the check was complete and not held in a fingerprint data bank by the RCMP. I like living in a free society.

3. The mean BC government has recently cut funding for poor kids so instead of getting two dental checkups per year, now they only deserve one checkup. After a decade of abuse from this government, kicking kids in the teeth like this shows just how little we can trust them to have the best interest of citizens at heart.

So now we find out that the government is holding DNA samples from my babies and doesn’t feel they need to inform the parents and that they have asserted their sick, twisted and misguided prerogative to do whatever they want with my children’s DNA including possibly sending them to law enforcement agencies without my consent.

I simply do not trust this government to respect my children’s privacy. Period. Even if I support useful scientific testing or whatever, I am the parent. I have the privilege and responsibility to protect my children, including protecting their DNA from Kevin Falcon.

I intend to print out this form to request my children’s DNA to be returned to me.

I think you should too. I also think you should tell anyone you know who has had a child in BC or the Yukon in the last 11 years to do the same.

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Stephen Elliott-Buckley

Post-partisan eco-socialist. at Politics, Re-Spun
Stephen Elliott-Buckley is a husband, father, professor, speaker, consultant, former suburban Vancouver high school English and Social Studies teacher who changed careers because the BC Liberal Party has been working hard to ruin public education. He has various English and Political Science degrees and has been writing political, social and economic editorials since November 2002. Stephen is in Twitter, Miro and iTunes, and the email thing, and at his website,

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