The village of Oak Park’s Community Relations Commission has come out against the idea of Flock Safety automated license plate readers being used in the village. In a letter to the village board read Monday night, the CRC urged trustees and the village president to reject the resolution to install and use Flock plate recognition cameras in Oak Park. The CRC drafted the letter during a special meeting held March 30.

The commission used the letter to denounce the $112,500-two-year-contract as fiscally irresponsible and the contract’s lack of a privacy policy a danger to data security. The CRC also stated in the letter that the surveillance technology could encourage racially biased policing.

“These cameras could potentially create inequitable treatment of Black and Brown folks who drive in our community,” the commission wrote.

The CRC further labeled Flock cameras as all-around ineffective. The letter references a 2021 Bloomberg news story that reported between one percent and 10 percent of license plate hits are misreads, depending on the plate recognition system used.

“Furthermore, the cameras do not seem capable of accomplishing the stated goal of preventing crime,” wrote the CRC.

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