Letter to Governor Youngkin on Senate Bill 741, Facial Recognition Software for Public Safety

Dear Governor Youngkin:

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce urges you to sign into law Senate Bill 741, which would allow the use of facial recognition software for public safety in a manner that addresses privacy concerns.

Among other things, this important technology can help protect against human trafficking, help thwart terrorism, help the mentally ill, and help solve cold cases. This legislation would end the current moratorium on the use of facial recognition by local law enforcement.

S.B. 741 would provide important resources to support first responders, while putting rules in place regarding how the technology can be used, which would ensure accountability and transparency. The system established by S.B. 741 would be the most stringent rules in the country.

Furthermore, we believe S.B. 741’s requirement that facial recognition software meet high benchmarks within NIST’s Facial Recognition Vendor Test to be an extremely prudent way to validate which tools the state should consider procuring. Additionally, the legislation’s requirement for vendors to be approved through Virginia’s Division of Purchase and Supply provides another layer of oversight and accountability.

We urge you to sign S.B. 741 into law.


Jordan Crenshaw
Vice President
Chamber Technology Engagement Center
U.S. Chamber of Commerce