SAN FRANCISCO – The California Racial and Identity Profiling Advisory Board (Board) released a new video this week highlighting the integrity of stop data collected under the Racial and Identity Profiling Act of 2015 (RIPA). Under the law, by January 1, 2022, nearly all law enforcement agencies in California will be required to collect detailed information regarding stops and searches, including data on perceived demographics. The video describes some of the steps law enforcement are taking to ensure the data is complete and accurate. It also outlines the impact community organizations and educational institutions hope the data will have on efforts to tackle racial profiling in California. On April 1, 2019, eight of the largest law enforcement agencies in the state provided the California Department of Justice with data collected since July 1, 2018. This first wave of data represents more than 1.8 million interactions between peace officers and the public.
“In many Board meetings, members of the public expressed concern with how the integrity of the data was being maintained,” said Co-Chair of the Board and Executive Director of Alliance San Diego Andrea Guerrero. “This video addresses these questions by detailing how the information is collected, stored, and reviewed to increase transparency and trust in this process.”
“This video highlights the efforts that law enforcement is making to ensure that the data is accurate, complete, and trustworthy to allow for the most impactful analysis,” said Co-Chair of the Board, Kings County Sheriff, and Designee of the President of the California State Sheriffs’ Association Dave Robinson.
“We must always strive to strengthen trust between peace officers and the communities they are sworn to protect,” said California Attorney General Xavier Becerra. “When it comes to analyzing the impact law enforcement activity has on Californians, we need to know that the data coming in is reliable. This video illustrates the efforts being made to ensure the integrity of the stop data.”
In the video released by the Board, representatives from law enforcement and academia describe some of the mechanisms in place to ensure data is complete and accurate. These efforts include local internal compliance audits, error notifications automatically built into the state collection system, and review of the data by government and academic researchers who can check for anomalies during analysis. The Board recognizes that working to address community concerns by building confidence in the data collection process is an important step in achieving its larger purpose of eliminating racial and identity profiling. Additionally, the video also features community organizations and academic institutions discussing how the data collected on police interactions with the public can be used to better understand who is stopped and why.
The California Racial and Identity Profiling Act of 2015 requires California law enforcement agencies to collect and maintain demographic data on all stops and searches. As part of the 2015 law, the Board was formed in July 2016 to analyze this data collection and provide yearly public reports. The California Legislature charged the Board with an ambitious purpose – to eliminate racial and identity profiling and improve diversity and racial and identity sensitivity in law enforcement. By unifying a diverse group of individuals from across different sectors – law enforcement, civil and human rights organizations, community groups, and academia – in a shared cause, the Board aims to improve law enforcement-community relations in California through collaboration, transparency, and accountability.