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October 19, 2023

Face search company Clearview AI overturns UK privacy fine

  • In 2022, Clearview AI was fined more than £7.5m by the information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for unlawfully storing facial images.
  • The company offers clients a system where users can upload a photo and it matches this in a database of billions of images it has collected and provides links to where these images appear online.
  • Prior to the ICO’s action, now ruled unlawful, France, Italy and Australia have also taken action against the company.
  • Clearview succeeded in appealing against the ICO’s fine and enforcement action because it was used solely by law enforcement bodies outside the UK.
  • For more, please visit the BBC News website.

The following stories may be regionalised:

Parents say strict Spilsby school is breaching human rights

  • According to parents, the school is damaging children’s mental health and education.
  • One parent said her daughter was suspended for going to the toilet without permission, despite having a medical pass.
  • In another incident, a child was placed in isolation as punishment for not completing her homework. The child’s parent said she has weak eyesight and was unable to read the small text on the paper.
  • Other parents are claiming that behaviour policies were being applied inflexibly to children with special educational needs, even despite educational care being in place.
  • There have been almost 70 letters of complaint that have been sent to the school, its governors and Ofsted by concerned parents.
  • A school spokesperson said that suspensions were used “proportionally” and that parental feedback has introduced changes such as stopping after-school detentions after families raised the issue of difficult transport links in the community.
  • For more, please visit the BBC News website.

Ruling could transform rape cases in Scottish courts

  • A panel of seven Appeal Court judges said that there will no longer need to be evidence from two separate sources that penetration has taken place.
  • Instead, evidence that the victim was distressed afterwards could be used to corroborate the rape allegation.
  • Rape cases in Scotland have previously required two sources of evidence for each part of the crime, as well as prosecutors needing to prove that the rape happened, that there was no consent, and that the accused was responsible.
  • Some lawyers have raised concerns about the law, arguing that the evidence of distress “tells one nothing about the mode of assault”.
  • The Scottish government is looking to introduce charges to rape trials in a bid to increase conviction rates, including proposals to hold trials for serious sexual offences without a jury.
  • For more, please visit the BBC News website.

Cuts could reduce education in England to ‘bare bones’, headteachers say

  • It comes after the £370m government budget cut forced them to plan for further cuts.
  • The Department for Education was forced to apologise this month after an error in forecasting pupil numbers resulted in the school budget for 2024-25 being inflated by 0.62%.
  • Several schools are now having to review their financial plans, with some potentially having to cut teaching assistants that work with children with special educational needs.
  • James Bowen, assistant general secretary at the NAHT school leaders’ union reported: “many schools still face really difficult decisions when budgeting, affecting everything from staffing to learning resources. The error in school funding estimates means there will be even less wriggle room in budgets.”
  • For more, please visit The Guardian website.