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Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

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Photo: Lionel Bonaventure/AFP/Getty Images

Amazon employees left an all-staff meeting on Thursday disappointed with the response they got from executives on questions regarding the company's controversial facial recognition technology, BuzzFeed reports.

The details: Amazon Rekognition is being pushed out to law enforcement around the country, including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which has resulted in backlash from employees and civil rights groups. But Andy Jassy, the CEO of Amazon Web Services, which oversees Rekognition, told staff that while he recognizes people will have "opinions that are very wide-ranging ... we feel really great and really strongly about the value that Amazon Rekognition is providing our customers of all sizes and all types of industries in law enforcement, and out of law enforcement."

  • Jassy said he feels it's the government's responsibility to instill regulations around using Rekognition, adding that Amazon has "a set of terms and services ... if people violate those terms of services and don't use them responsibly, they won't be able to use our services any longer."
  • One Amazon employee told BuzzFeed: "It's hard to trust that harm and abuse can be prevented if it is only post-mortem and through the Terms of Service."

Go deeper: The police technology revolution no one is hearing about

Go deeper

Biden confronts mounting humanitarian crisis at the border

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Pool/Getty Images     

Just over a month into his presidency, President Biden is staring down a mounting crisis at the border that could be just as bad as the ones faced by Barack Obama and Donald Trump, if not worse.

Why it matters: Immigration is an issue that can consume a presidency. It's intensely and poisonously partisan. It's complicated. And the lives and welfare of vulnerable children hang in the balance.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The rise of vaccine passports

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Vaccine passports were touted early in the pandemic as an important piece of the plan to get people back to normal life. Now they’re becoming a reality.

Driving the news: CLEAR, the secure digital identity app that you see in airports around the world, and CommonPass, a health app that lets users securely access vaccination records and COVID test results, have joined forces.

"Vaccine tourism" stretches states' supplies

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Americans who are highly motivated to get vaccinated are traveling across state lines after hearing about larger vaccine supplies or loopholes in sign-up systems.

Why it matters: "Vaccine tourism" raises ethical and legal questions, and could worsen the racial socioeconomic and racial inequalities of the pandemic.

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