As more is learned about the $295 million, 27-month agreement recently signed by Texas Department of State Health Services and New York-based tech company MTX Group to implement contact tracing, a growing number of lawmakers are sounding off against the agreement.
Now State Sen. Bob Hall (R–Edgewood) is the latest to weigh in, warning that the program is wrong on multiple levels:
“There is never a right time or right way to do the wrong thing. In the COVID-19 scenario, contact tracing is technically wrong, financially wrong, and morally wrong.
“Contact tracing is technically wrong, as it may be an effective tool to trace slow moving deadly viruses such as Ebola or Tuberculosis, but not for a fast-moving virus with a low death rate that is primarily spread by asymptomatic people.
“Contact tracing, for COVID-19, is a colossal waste of money which could be better spent on resources to protect the elderly and immune-compromised populations that are the most affected.
Contact tracing will shred our constitutional rights to privacy.
“Texas must stop contact tracing and change course by adopting new policies consistent with the facts as we now know them; COVID-19 death rate is much less than the first suggested 3-7%, it primarily affects seniors and immune-compromised, not equally across the full population.
“Going forward, Texas must immediately remove all business operating restrictions, continue to focus attention on hot spots and congregate living situations, and trust Texans to act responsibility to protect themselves and their neighbor.”
Additionally, Hall sent a letter to Gov. Greg Abbott, warning that going forward with the agreement could permanently stain his legacy, comparing it to the HPV vaccine mandate signed by former Gov. Rick Perry.