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Principled Policing Report

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June 08, 2016

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The relationship between law enforcement and the communities they serve must be grounded in trust in order to ensure safety and protection for all. Recent events in California and across the nation have strained this relationship. As part of Attorney General Kamala D. Harris’ ongoing commitment to identify strategies to strengthen trust between law enforcement and communities, the Department of Justice offered California law enforcement executives a course entitled Principled Policing in November 2015. Principled Policing was the first Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST)-certified course on procedural justice and implicit bias in the nation. Over 50 law enforcement executives from 28 departments across California participated in one-day trainings held in Sacramento and Los Angeles. The Department developed the training in partnership with Stanford SPARQ, the Oakland and Stockton Police Departments, and the community organization California Partnership for Safer Communities. 

Stanford SPARQ evaluated the course. Key points from that evaluation are summarized below:

  • Police executives found the training effective in advancing their knowledge of procedural justice and implicit bias.
  • Police executives believed the training could help increase trust and decrease tension between police and community.
  • The training increased confidence among police executives that better police-community relations are possible.
  • The training helped police executives recognize multiple routes to positive change, including the role of diverse stakeholders.
  • The training was well-received by agencies of varying size and geographic location.

You can read and download the full report here.