Council approves return of facial recognition technology

Published: Jul. 21, 2022 at 6:48 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - After throwing out the use of facial recognition technology, two years ago, the New Orleans City Council this afternoon, voted to reinstate it. The policy change came after nearly four hours of a heated debate.

The New Orleans Council spent much of the day, discussing the use of anti-crime surveillance cameras as the crime rate spirals.

Council members were assured that peer-reviewed safeguards are now in place to make sure that surveillance technology is only used to fight nearly 40 serious crimes.

But in spite of assurances, many worry that civil liberties will be violated.

“The greatest percentage will focus on Black people, the law always focuses on Black people,” said Larry Morgan of New Orleans.

Police Chief Shaun Ferguson made it clear that the use of surveillance technology could be a key part of solving crime, but he could not guarantee that it would reduce the city’s highest in the nation murder rate.

“This is not the answer to everything it’s just another tool in the toolbox,” said Ferguson.

The measure passed on a four to two vote. Council member council present Moreno was absent due to a Covid exposure

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