Washingtonians go straight to the voters: Initiative 243: Privacy over profit

Washingtonians go straight to the voters: Initiative 243: Privacy over profit

Stop the theft of your private information.

Initiative 243 Official Ballot Title

Shall the privacy of personal information be protected through restrictions on collection, use. and disclosure by businesses, wth additional protection for financial and medical information?

Highlights of the Privacy Over Profit Initiative

-Allows you to decide how your private information is used and who sees it.

– Protects you against information trafficking

Initiative Petition for Submission to the Legislature

To the Honorable Ralph Munro, Secretary of State of the State of Washington:

We, the undersigned citizens and legal voters of the State of Washington, respectfully direct that this petition and the proposed measure known as Initiative Measure No. 243. and entitled “Shall the

After the legislature in Washington State failed to act on a proposal to require consent before businesses could sell certain personal information, a group of activists decided to gather signatures on a voter initiative that would force the legislature to do so. Washington’s Initiative 243 seems to be the first in the nation devoted to pro testing personal records. At first, J.R. Baker, the Bainbridge Island political consultant who began the campaign, proposed an initiative that would have forced the issue on the November ballot, after he collected 180,000 valid signatures by July 7. But he bowed to reality and instead proposed another kind of initiative, which extends the deadline to Dec. 29. It would force the legislature to accept the language as law or have it put on the ballot in November 2001. He is joined in the campaign by the American Association of Retired Persons and WashPIRG, the Public Interest Research Group.

The five-page initiative would require consent before a private company could collect personal information or disseminate it for a use that is different from the ruse for which it was originally provided. A business would have to point to a specific authorizing law before collecting Social Security numbers. There would be higher protections for medical and financial information about individuals.

Baker calls his campaign “Privacy Over Profit.” www.privacyoverprofit.com.

Copyright Privacy Journal Jul 2000

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