Online Program

Empowering Community Access to Data on Police Use of Force

Monday, November 2, 2015 : 3:05 p.m. - 3:20 p.m.

Rachelle Annechino, MIMS, Critical Public Health Research Group, Prevention Research Center, Oakland, CA
Recent protests focused on police killings of unarmed Black youth in the US have drawn renewed attention to inequities in the effects of law enforcement activities on marginalized communities, as well as an astonishing lack of data on the public health impacts of police use of force. While crime-related data is relatively accessible in most US cities, information regarding police use of force in interactions with civilians remains inaccessible. This information drought reduces the ability of communities to make informed public health decisions. This discussion will trace the progress of an ongoing project to collect data on police use of force in Oakland, California, highlighting obstacles encountered along the way and practical approaches to resolving them. Drawing on experiences with the project thus far, policing literature, and qualitative descriptions of police encounters from young Black participants in an ongoing tobacco study, we will also offer preliminary insights regarding (a) types of data needed for comprehensive analysis of the public health impacts of police activities on diverse communities; (b) negotiating with law enforcement and other government agencies for the release of existing data, as well as for the systematic collection of relevant data where it does not exist; and (c) guidelines for empowering community access to data regarding the potential health risks of police encounters.

Learning Areas:

Advocacy for health and health education
Communication and informatics
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Name shortcomings in existing data resources for understanding the public health impacts of police use of force. Describe potential barriers to collecting data on police use of force, and practical approaches to overcoming these barriers. Discuss lack of public access to information on police use of force as a public health problem that negatively impacts marginalized communities.

Keyword(s): Police Brutality, Data Collection and Surveillance

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an Associate Research Scientist at PIRE, where I have been a member of key personnel on multiple federally funded grants focused on the contexts of substance use in marginalized communities, and I have a master's degree in Information Management and Systems. My publications include a co-authored book chapter on information categorization and standards, and essays on qualitative and mixed methods research. Recently I led a session on police data at City Camp Oakland.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.