ACLU Comment on Minneapolis Police Department's New Data Portal
St. Paul, Minn – Today the Minneapolis Police Department launched an online, publicly accessible tool that provides access to data about the stops that officers make. The data will be updated daily and provides detailed information about the person and circumstances of each stop. Significantly, this information includes race data. The following statement can be attributed to Teresa Nelson, interim executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota.
“The ACLU of Minnesota is pleased that the Minneapolis Police Department created this important tool which gives the public access to the records of suspicious person stops. Publicly accessible data is critical because it creates more transparency of the department’s actions. This type of transparency means that the public can identify potential problems like racial disparities. In addition, the data can provide objective evidence of whether reforms have their intended effects or not.
The ACLU and other community groups have long pushed the MPD to regularly release its own data as an important step in creating a more equitable and just department. Without this portal, if an individual wanted to access this public data it would cost hundreds of dollars and months of wait time.
In 2015, the ACLU released a report that detailed substantial racial disparities in low level arrests by the Minneapolis Police Department. One of the recommendations of the report was to make arrest data publically accessible.
This new access to data alone will not solve the racial disparities in arrests and other problems highlighted in our report, but it will help the community hold the police accountable for its actions.”
The online tool can be found at www.insideMPD.com
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