Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $646,000)
The Oakland Police Department (OPD) proposes to implement the Procedural Justice/Community Police Trust project. As part of its violence reduction strategy, Ceasefire Oakland, OPD implemented a series of Procedural Justice (PJ) trainings over the last 8 years designed to improve police officer behavior, public safety, and community police trust. PJ I - Introduction to Procedural Justice and Police Legitimacy, focused on how interactions between police officers and members of the public impact community members’ views of the police and their willingness to comply with the law and partner on crime prevention practices. PJ II - Implicit Bias, focused on how unconscious biases may shape OPD’s interactions with members of the public and result in racially disparate outcomes even when those interactions are not overtly racist. OPD wants to develop PJ III - Reconciliation, that focuses on how candid conversations about law enforcement’s complicity in historic and present-day racial tensions and harms can repair relationships and foster trust between OPD and the communities it serves. The purpose is to design a community/OPD workshop that begins to repair and strengthen police-community relationships by addressing the deep historical roots of distrust in the police among people of color and other marginalized populations. Project activities will consist of lead facilitators from the community and police who shall work with the Ceasefire Partnership to create trust building workshops as outlined in the National Initiative for Building Community-Police Trust. The facilitators will execute the principles of reconciliation including Fact-Finding, which will inform the reconciliation process, Acknowledgement of Harm, Sustained Listening: Reconciliation Listening Sessions, and Narrative Collection and Dissemination. These improved relationships should manifest into more positive police-community interactions that lead to a reduction in crime. The project is expected to improve interactions between police and the public. The goal is to start to change the communities’ views of police, increase their willingness to comply with the law and partner on crime prevention practices, crime rates and improve community/public safety in Oakland. Each focused listening session is designed to establish trust between law enforcement and communities to enable them to work together to consider policies, practices, and norms—both within law enforcement and within communities—to reduce violence and harm and improve public safety outcomes.