Today the Seattle Police Department is launching an important new partnership with an organization known for reducing racial bias in public safety; the Center for Policing Equity (CPE).
The CPE is a Los Angeles-based research and advocacy organization that produces analyses to identify and reduce the causes of racial disparities in policing. Over the next few months – with input from multiple community members and organizations – the CPE will closely analyze the SPD’s functions, training, policies, accountability measures and impacts on communities of color. The CPE will then review all data and convert those findings into strategies to ensure the SPD eradicates public safety inequities moving forward.
Over the last 10 years, the CPE has partnered with over 25 police departments nationwide and demonstrated the transformative impact of data-driven interventions. The organization is committed to bridging the divide of communication, mistrust and suffering in America’s most vulnerable and neglected communities and will not stop working until disparities in policing are abolished. We are eager for the CPE to begin that meaningful work here.
After the murder of George Floyd ignited a world-wide Civil Rights reckoning, police departments across the country are now seeking expert guidance on how to reimagine public safety. The SPD is honored the CPE has chosen to focus its considerable expertise in Seattle; to leverage data and behavioral science to direct our resources towards better public safety.
The Center for Policing Equity will be a part of the SPD’s Functional Analysis Interdepartmental Team (IDT), as detailed in Mayor Jenny Durkan Executive Order 2020-10: Reimagining Policing and Community Safety in Seattle Community Safety Executive Order. This vital partnership between the SPD and CPE will begin immediately with community engagement and result in a final report of recommendations, expected to be submitted to the Seattle Police Department and Mayor Durkan’s office next March.
It is my hope this critical collaboration will help identify where the SPD is not meeting public expectations and will provide a roadmap for reinventing community wellness, with justice for all as our collective goal.
Chief, Seattle Police Department