It's taken me a little while to post this up; but a story I did with my colleague Richard Cookson on the databases local authorities hold on people who complain or pose a threat to staff made the Daily Mail.
So-called cautionary contact databases are used to keep tabs on people councils feel pose a threat to staff. However their scope, the number of people who can access them and the type of information held has been questioned.
The Daily Mail story starts:
Thousands of people involved in disagreements with council staff have had their personal details stored on secret blacklists.
Bureaucrats have listed the details of members of the public who have been involved in rows with teachers or dustmen over seemingly trivial matters.
Scores of councils hold databases of ‘undesirables’ – individuals who could potentially pose a threat to their staff.
They hold the details of almost 9,000 people, but most have never been charged with or convicted of a crime.
Personal information such as car registration numbers, telephone numbers, household pets, nicknames and distinguishing features are listed on the databases.
If you want to see the spreadsheet listing all the responses from local authorities we canvassed then click here.