PUEBLO attends Racially Biased Policing Training
PUEBLO was invited by the Oakland :Police Department to participate in a two day training on Racially Biased Policing. This session was co-sponsored by the Oakland and Berkeley Police Departments and the top command staff of each Department attended. It was considered important to have community stakeholders present, as well as police officers. In addition to PUEBLO, the Berkeley Chapters of the ACLU and the NAACP also attended the training.
The instructor was Dr. Lorie Fridell, the former Director of Research at the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), a national expert on racial profiling, or what she terms 'racially biased policing.' Dr. Fridell brought a great deal of research into the presentation, much of it intended to distinguish between 'disparities' and 'profiling' when examining the data that is collected in efforts to determine whether bias is present in law enforcement agencies. Also examined were questions of 'intention' - whether contacts were made consciously on the basis of race or possibly on a sub-conscious level, what Malcolm Gladwell characterizes as 'thinking without thinking, or the 'blink response.' .
PUEBLO had the opportunity to talk informally with Deputy Chief Israel about the possibility of an ongoing dialogue between OPD and the community to reach a better understanding of the feelings, experiences and perceptions on both sides. We are hopeful that such an interchange will occur.