Courtney's cover image
Courtney

Courtney Brown

Year of Award: 2018 Award State: Australian Capital Territory Emergency Services > Police
Reducing implicit bias errors in police decision making, particularly in time-sensitive incidents - UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand
Download

Conclusions and Recommendations:

Many of the strategies discussed in this report are already undertaken by Australian law enforcement agencies. However, these strategies tend to be siloed between different business areas or are the initiatives of motivated individual officers. Establishing an overarching strategic direction for these initiatives could compound their effect. Particularly if the implementation is facilitated through a multi-agency plan incorporating subject matter experts from areas including; criminal justice, health, education and social services.

To improve the context in which police make rapid decisions, the following recommendations should be considered:


Develop a multi-agency plan.

  • Map out all initiatives currently delivered by Australian law enforcement agencies and relevant stakeholders, identify gaps and establish a roadmap.
  • Systematically collect, analyse and use information to evaluate what works.

Commit to diverse policy and procedure making teams.

  • Lack of diversity in the teams producing policy and procedure decisions results in decisions that may not accurately consider the unique circumstances of differing groups of Australians.
  • Consider the effect of bias in current and future policy and procedure.
  • Implement sentinel event review and root cause analysis to highlight and subsequently change erroneous policies and procedures.

Deliver training that teaches the concepts of implicit bias and the tactics to reduce those biases.

  • Information about bias must be presented in a non-judgemental way.
  • Content must be focused on locally relevant examples.
  • Training should be particularised for executive level members, police members and support staff including dispatchers.
  • Training should be delivered traditionally in small heterogeneous training groups, and not via eLearning.

Develop a strategy to impart an understanding of how the history of past harms affect the present.

  • Acknowledge past and present harms and engage those who have been harmed to contribute to policy and procedure going forward.

Equip officers with thorough information and adequate technology.


Provide police officers the opportunity for prosocial interaction with outgroup members.


Keywords: Police, decision making, implicit bias, procedural justice, contact theory, reconciliation, police tactics, history of police, police culture, police policy

Related fellows
Andreea Lachsz, Andreea
Emergency Services > Police
2018
Mark Goldspink, Mark
Emergency Services > Police
2018
Timothy Day, Timothy
Emergency Services > Police
2018
Greg Dean, Greg
Emergency Services > Police
2017
Debra Robertson APM, Debra
Emergency Services > Police
2017
David Hickey, David
Emergency Services > Police
2019
Sharni Lawler, Sharni
Emergency Services > Police
2019
Stewart Dodd, Stewart
Emergency Services > Police
2016
Kirsty Hales, Kirsty
Emergency Services > Police
2014
Matthew Moloney, Matthew
Emergency Services > Police
2014