Welcome to the Forensic Genetics Policy Initiative, a global effort to enact human rights safeguards for forensic DNA databases.
DNA is undoubtedly a useful tool for solving crimes; during an investigation it can eliminate suspects, exonerate the falsely convicted as well as helping to convict the guilty. But expansion of the uses of DNA by law enforcement around the world are occurring in a policy vacuum with no public input, discussion or debate.
A steady erosion of privacy and human rights is accompanying the shifting purpose of DNA’s use by law enforcement from one of identification to one of surveillance. Continued use of new techniques and practices outside of the arena public and judicial oversight and without the application of ethical guidelines demands a rigorous debate about the government’s intrusion into the lives of innocent people.
Our hope is that this new website (www.dnapolicyinitiative.org ) can serve as a global resource for information, discussion and action on these critical issues. Please explore the site, post information and begin a general discussion on our board or on our country by country wiki.
An appropriate middle ground between the legitimate needs of law enforcement and a respect for individual rights is achievable. We must start now. Please join us!