Simon Carr: The job interview of the future ...

'I see your mother seems to be a smoker. Will you be able to stop her smoking?'
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The Independent Online

"So you're the finalist for the position? Congratulations! Excellent. Just pop your ID card into the reader for me and let's run the checks.

Now, let's see. You're a non-smoker, your CV says, and you look after your disabled mother part-time. A male carer! Nothing wrong with that, of course not. Let's have a look at your mother, We can just bring her up here on another screen. Yes, I see that she herself sadly seems to be a smoker. Her Reward card indicates 60 Silk Cut a week.

The trouble is, if you have contact with children there will be vulnerable ones who react to secondary smoke particles on your clothes. Will you be able to stop your mother smoking? From her medical records she has Type B Hodgkinsons so it's not a problem that is going to last forever. Then again...

And to be honest, I have to say that your referees and references are all self-designated Caucasian. And they come from the same income bracket, and live in the same council tax band houses. We're very diverse here, are you sure you'll fit in? Healthy inclusive groups are open to diversity and your peer group is exclusively heterosexual...

And yet your ISP record shows you are logging on to gay porn sites between 11pm and 11.13pm. Research, you say... ? The records over the last 12 months show quite regular... research. Of course there's nothing wrong with gay sexuality, very far from it, but we will need a letter from your partner saying that she's aware of your habit and that she condones it, and it would help if your counsellor (I see you go weekly) could let us know that you are confronting this tension in your life. For anti-terrorism purposes, to minimise potential for blackmail.

Your GP records indicate you consume 14 units of alcohol a week, and yet your Reward card reveals purchases of 45 units a week. Your partner drinks the rest? All of it herself? But she's a visiting nurse. I see she was disciplined by her Authority for an offence against diversity and equality. How far did her alcohol consumption contribute to the offence?

She is a Christian, I see. She offered to pray for a patient. She too seems to be some sort of smoker judging by her requests to our Smoking Cessation Outreach programme. And she has a daughter by a previous relationship, I see, with a learning disability.

I can't say I'm surprised judging by the environment of smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, aggressive belief systems, and motoring offences – does your family unit have issues of anger management? I notice there is no mention of an active anger management strategy, and you obviously have issues with anger, this is clearly apparent.

Your profile flags up five levels of concern for the safety of the child in your household. I will have to send your job application to social services to get a medical and social clearance on your parenting skills – I can't personally take the risk of being accessory to another Climbie case. And your application will be held pending if and when the child is released from custody

Can you see your file? I'm so sorry. We have to be very strict on data protection."



The Coroners and Justice Bill authorising wide new data sharing powers is going into Committee stage over the next three weeks.

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