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What Is White House Police Data Initiative?

By    |   Wednesday, 15 Jul 2015 07:23 PM

The White House announced the launching of the Police Data Initiative in May after the Obama administration assembled a task force to lessen tension between law enforcement and the public.

The Police Date Initiative is a pilot program in 21 cities designed to instigate solutions from the task force’s suggestions quickly, according to Engadget.

The police departments will release 101 data sets that have never before been accessible to the public. It will include uses of force, vehicle stops, and shootings involving officers, according to FirstResponder.gov. The information will go onto a portal created by the Police Foundation and ESRI.

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Nonprofits Code for America and CI Technologies will skim data in the IA Pro police integrity software, which is used by more than 500 departments nationwide, Engadget reported.

Additionally, according to Engadget, some information will go toward studies to identify warning signs officers may show that could indicate they need training or assistance when it comes to interacting with the public.

Due to privacy concerns, however, there are legal limits to the information that can be shared, which has made past studies like this difficult.

Head of the University of Chicago’s Data Science for Social Good fellowship Rayid Ghani told USA Today the information will be anonymous as officers will receive randomized numbers in place of their names. Demographic information will still be accessible.

“If it were completely anonymized, it wouldn't be useful to the police department,” Ghani said. “Generally the trade-off. There is a privacy and a utility trade off.”

The goal of the program is to prevent future problems, not to perform disciplinary measures.

“The purpose of early intervention is not to get rid of an officer. It's to save an officer,” Knoxville Police Chief David Rousch told USA Today, adding his department is sharing the records.

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Nonetheless, some remain opposed to sharing information on complaints, such as president of the Dallas police union Richard Todd, who opposes the initiative.

“That just opens up Pandora's box,” Todd told USA Today. “We have some serious issues with the way some complaints are being handed down.”

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The White House announced the launching of the Police Data Initiative in May after the Obama administration assembled a task force to lessen tension between law enforcement and the public.
law enforcement, White House Police Data
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2015-23-15
Wednesday, 15 Jul 2015 07:23 PM
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