Thursday, September 12, 2013

[European Union] IAJGS Letter In Response to the Proposed Data Protection Regulation

Posted by: Jan Meisels Allen



I have previously posted on this blog about the EU’s Proposed Data Protection Regulation and its chilling effect on records access for those posted on various Internet sites and SIGs if the proposed regulation goes forth as currently proposed.  While the vote on the proposed regulation has been postponed four times, as of this posting it is still scheduled for a vote sometime in September—we do not know of the exact vote. 

The IAJGS Board of Directors agreed at is board meeting earlier this month that IAJGS should write to all 28 EU Ministers’ of Justice requesting them to convey our issues to their EU Council representatives with the proposed regulation prior to the vote. The IAJGS Board also agreed that while there were many issues with the proposed regulation we should focus on several issues that might resonate with the EU—and we focused on two. The IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee crafted the letter which went out over IAJGS Secretary Mark Nicholls name and address as he is a resident of one of the EU countries.

The two issues the letter focuses on are:

1.         The importance to trace family medical history back both direct line and collaterally, and we used the BRACA I and BRACA 2 breast and ovarian cancer as examples. 
2.         The importance of holocaust victims not to be forgotten and for family reunification.  We countered with the proposed regulation’s advocating the individual ‘s "right to be forgotten" with the “right to be remembered”

A copy of the letter may be found at: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ehtslp8llv7e9bk/EU%20Data%20Protection%20Letter%20UK-1.pdf    The personalized letters sent to all EU Country ministers were identical in the body of the letter.

To learn more about this and other records access issues subscribe to the IAJGS Records Access Alert-open to all JewishGen Discussion Group and SIG  subscribers.

To register go to: http://lists.iajgs.org/mailman/listinfo/records-access-alerts  and follow the instructions to enter your email address, full name and which JGS/JHS/SIG/JewishGen affiliation.   You will receive an email response that you have to reply to or the subscription will not be finalized. To access the archives go to: http://lists.iajgs.org/mailman/private/records-access-alerts/      You must be subscribed to the Records Access Alert to  access the archives

Have a happy and healthy New Year!


Jan Meisels Allen
IAJGS Vice President
Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee

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