Stanford and neighboring cities work together to examine police reform alternatives
Six Midpeninsula cities collaborate with Stanford on policing research to inform local policy decisions.
In the wake of George Floyd’s death under the knee of a Minneapolis police officer, and the shooting of Breonna Taylor in her home by Louisville police earlier this year, Bay Area residents called for reinvigorated conversations about police reform in their local communities, and cities responded with resolutions and value statements committing to racial justice and equity.
In response to these calls for change, local jurisdictions collaborated with Stanford to pursue research on policing reform and best practices. Conducted through the Bill Lane Center for the American West, the research is part of a larger effort by Stanford’s new Office of Community Engagement (OCE) to harness the expertise and resources of units across the university and apply them to mutual challenges faced by our region.
Focus on racial justice
City leaders from East Palo Alto, Los Altos, Menlo Park, Mountain View, Palo Alto and Redwood City participated in the collaboration, with the goal of reimagining public safety in their communities. Though all six of these cities were already exploring race, equity and policing within their own city limits, the Bill Lane Center’s convenings enabled a regional conversation, bringing city leaders together in a joint effort, said Joyce Tagal, ’20, who conducted the research through the Lane Center’s City Manager’s Initiative. Tagal earned a master’s degree through the Stanford Public Policy and Education program.
What the research shows