Congress To Think About Expense Banning Facial Recognition From Public Real Estate

Congress To Think About Expense Banning Facial Recognition From Public Real Estate


Brooklyn tenants are combating a strategy by their property owner, Nelson Management, to install facial recognition technology at the entryways of their rent-regulated complex in Brownsville. (Brahmjot Kaur/ Gothamist)

On the heels of a broadening argument over facial recognition software application and its use on minority communities, a Brooklyn Congresswoman has presented a costs to ban such biometric systems from all federally-funding public housing tasks in the nation.

Democratic U.S. Representative Yvette Clark introduced the bill, called the No Biometric Barriers Real Estate Act of 2019, into the House of Representatives recently. Her 9th district includes parts of Brownsville and lies just outside the Atlantic Plaza Towers, a rent-regulated approximately 700- system complex where renters have actually been fighting the property owner’s efforts to set up a facial recognition system.

Clark’s proposal particularly looks for to prohibit using facial and other biometric acknowledgment systems at rental advancements that receive any type of federal aids or grants. That would include 325 New York City Public Housing Authority complexes along with project-based Section 8 real estate and rental complexes that get federal financing for the disabled and elderly.

#FacialRecognition tech. does not have a place in public housing given its predispositions towards females & POC. It’s why I put together legislation to prohibit it from public real estate. Today in addition to @AyannaPressley & @RepRashida we presented the No Biometric Barriers Real Estate Act of 2019.

— Yvette D. Clarke (@RepYvetteClarke) July 25, 2019


In addition to facial screening software, the expense likewise makes it prohibited for federally-assisted housing complexes to gather other types of biometric information, consisting of fingerprint and voice activation systems.

Throughout the nation, civil liberties groups have been raising scrutiny on facial acknowledgment, a largely unregulated and quickly available software application that’s seen its application broaden over the years, from government to economic sectors. In addition to personal privacy concerns, critics have indicated research studies that show facial recognition software application to be inaccurate when used on individuals of color

In Might, San Francisco ended up being the first city to ban the usage of facial acknowledgment technology by regional firms. Somerville, Massachusetts and Oakland, California are amongst those that have done the same.

State legislators in New york city are presently weighing a costs presented by State Senator Brad Hoylman and state Assemblywoman Latrice Walker that would prevent all property proprietors from using facial recognition.

Meanwhile, New York City has actually tacitly condoned using facial recognition in city-funded cost effective housing projects. Back in February, the city’s Department of Real estate Conservation and Development, the New York City Real Estate Advancement Corporation and the private designer Omni New York revealed that a 154- unit inexpensive housing complex in the Bronx would consist of a “ state of the art facial acknowledgment system” The apartments are designated for low-income renters and homeless veterans.

At Atlantic Plaza Towers, the proprietor, Nelson Management, is needed to look for approval to install facial acknowledgment from the state’s Houses and Community Renewal (HCR) firm, which supervises rent-regulated housing. According to an HCR representative, the application is still pending review.

The request to use facial recognition at Atlantic Plaza Towers was the first HCR has ever gotten. Ever since, a Queens property manager of a rent-regulated building at 111-17 Northern Boulevard has likewise sent a plan that would offer occupants the alternative to enter the building using facial recognition.

Learn More