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Senators raise concerns over Facebook's civil rights audit

Senators raise concerns over Facebook's civil rights audit
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Democratic Sens. Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisHouse Budget Committee 'not considering' firing CBO director Former North Carolina governor set to launch Senate bid How to manage migration intensified by climate change MORE (Calif.) and Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetSenators press for answers in Space Command move decision Biden announces first slate of diverse judicial nominees American Rescue Plan: Ending child poverty — let's make it permanent MORE (Colo.) sent a letter to Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergAdvocacy group accuses Facebook of fueling anti-Muslim hate Texas GOP move to overhaul voting laws: What you need to know Congress must come together and protect our children on social media MORE on Friday raising concerns over an independent civil rights audit of Facebook released this week.

The lawmakers called the independent review of the company's policies "unsettling." The audit criticized Facebook for failing to develop a mechanism for protecting civil rights and for a hands-off approach when it comes to free speech, even in cases of violent posts.

"We share the auditors’ concern that Facebook has failed to use the tools and resources at its disposal to more vigorously combat voter suppression and protect civil rights," the senators wrote.

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"Although none of these issues lend themselves to easy solutions, we do not accept that they are beyond Facebook’s considerable power to address especially when the audit has made clear where progress is possible in several areas."

The lawmakers also criticized Facebook's preparation for the upcoming general election, saying the platform is lacking “resolve to confront voter suppression and learn the lessons of the 2016 election."

The letter lists a series of questions about following up on the recommendations in the audit, asking for responses by Aug. 15.

The Hill has reached out to Facebook for comment on the letter.