Miami Beach Police Department to Provide Increased Transparency

— As Part of the White House Police Data Initiative —

The Miami Beach Police Department (MBPD) is among the initial group of law enforcement agencies throughout the country, and one of just three in South Florida, that has committed to taking action on concrete deliverables from the Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

Signed by President Barack Obama as an executive order on December 18, 2014, this task force was created to better understand specific policing challenges and help communities identify actions they can take to improve legitimacy among law enforcement and the communities they serve.

“While positive community engagement between citizens and the Miami Beach Police Department is supported through daily contacts, meetings, events, and social media platforms, the task force recommended additional steps, including open access to data,” explained MBPD Chief Daniel J. Oates.

Accordingly, the White House launched the Police Data Initiative (PDI) that seeks to provide open access to law enforcement data, which has previously been difficult to find or in some instances not collected.

MBPD will publish four initial datasets in the coming weeks consisting of calls for service, arrest data, employee demographics and internal affairs case disposition statistics. The information will be available for public viewing, via the city’s website. Future datasets will include use-of-force statistics and officer-involved shootings data. All datasets will be made available through a portal that allows for downloading, analyzing and aggregation.

“Repairing police-community relations throughout the nation will require a comprehensive, multi-dimensional strategy, of which, data and technology is an important component,” added Oates. “Having open access to data that has previously been unavailable will serve as a critical step in re-establishing community trust and transparency.”