Los Angeles’ Contact Tracing App Comes with Controversy

Governing: Since the COVID-19 pandemic first came to Los Angeles in the spring, the county Department of Public Health has hired nearly 2,600 people to do the manual work of contact tracing: asking people who test positive for the coronavirus to list everywhere they've been and everyone they've seen in recent days, then tracking down anyone they've encountered and testing them before they spread the virus further.

But the rate of community spread in Los Angeles is overwhelming the county's capacity, said L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer. That's why she and other civic leaders gathered Wednesday night in a ballroom atop City Hall to encourage Angelenos to download an app called SafePass, developed by the tech company behind the popular but controversial safety-alert app Citizen.

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