Body cameras were promised as a way to hold police accountable not as surveillance systems to be used against the public. Unfortunately, body cameras are now at risk of being paired with face surveillance technology — despite the fact that face recognition algorithms routinely misidentify people of color and women. Face-scanning body cameras would be a dangerous, radical expansion of police powers at a time when our top priority should be creating new approaches to public safety that work for all of us.
AB 1215: The Body Camera Accountability Act, introduced this year by Assembly member Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), will temporarily stop California law enforcement from adding face and other biometric surveillance technology to officer-worn body cameras for use against the public in California. AB 1215 is a common-sense bill that rightly concludes that keeping our communities safe doesn't have to come at the expense of our fundamental freedoms. We should all be able to safely live our lives without being watched and targeted by the government.
For more information, scroll down to see the 1-pager (.pdf).
October 8, 2019: Signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom
May 9, 2019: Passed by Assembly
April 23, 2019: Approved by Assembly Public Safety Committee
February 21, 2019: Bill is introduced