Iowa Sharing Coronavirus Data With Police
Iowa is reportedly one of the states that are sharing the addresses of people who have the coronavirus with first responders, in an effort to keep those people on the front line safe. This is according to the Cedar Rapids Gazette. However, revealing that information is sparking a debate about possible profiling.
The Gazette reports that the Associated Press and their review of those states found at least 10, including Iowa, also share the names of those people who have tested positive for COVID-19. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, sharing the information does not violate any medical privacy laws. Law enforcement officials say the information helps them when responding to a call and avoiding someone who potentially has the virus.
But, the Gazette reports that civil liberty and community activists have a problem with the potential profiling of African-Americans and Hispanic Americans. Some see that data being turned over to Immigration figures. Latinos make up just 6% of the state's population but account for 25% of all the state cases. Some groups now want assurance that the information will not be turned over to the federal government.
Law enforcement officials say that they have long been trusted with confidential information like social security numbers and a person's criminal history. The COVID-19 information is just an extension of that. Plus, they need that information to keep safe. The Gazette reports that over 100 police officers in the U.S. have died from COVID-19.
So what do YOU think? Should the state be sharing your medical information with the police?