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How can the Culture of Policing be more Nurturing?


The results and sentencing of the Chauvin trial provide a glimmer of hope that we can change the culture of policing. However the fact that more than 60 people died in encounters with police during the trial and the fact that 984 people have been shot to death by police in the past year shows unequivocally that much more is needed. I'm convinced that behavioral science can make a significant contribution to the problem.

I think we could form an Action Circle that reviews all of the evidence on policies and procedures that could help to evolve policing in a more nurturing direction. What policies have been shown to reduce police killings? Some of the policies that are being considered by the Congress currently include standards regarding police training and accountability that could be required of all police forces. One of the issues that I have not heard mentioned is the screening and hiring process for police. Also, people are constantly talking about training, but I see training as something that people get when they want to learn some new skills. It seems to me this is not a matter of skills but a matter of values and compassion.

If you have thoughts about what an Action Circle might do or more generally what needs to be done about this problem please share them. In particular share links or papers that you think contribute to solving the problem.

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