UWPD launches data dashboard, emphasis on racial equity

After more than a year of community meetings, listening to concerns, and collecting feedback, the UW-Madison Police Department is embarking on a one-of-a-kind approach to sharing key data with a focus on racial equity.

The UWPD Equity Dashboard was launched on December 9, 2021 and is the result of a collaboration with community members and stakeholders to develop a unique and powerful tool that promotes transparency and provides a set of success metrics that speak directly to the UWPD’s commitment to equity in policing.

“We’ve worked very hard alongside our UWPD Police Advisory Council and other community members over the past 18 months to find ways to further build trust and create opportunities for more engagement,” UWPD Chief Kristen Roman said. “We acknowledge we have a long road ahead in our efforts in promoting change —but we believe the UWPD Equity Dashboard is a significant step forward in deepening collaboration, inspiring partnership, and continuing important conversations about policing.”

On the Equity Dashboard, users can view a wide variety of data points – all with a laser focus on equity. UWPD calls for service, arrests, citations, use of force, and more can all be viewed and filtered by year, demographics, etc. Users can also view complaint data – including the total number of complaints, how the complaints were resolved, how many complaints involved use of force, and the number of officers with multiple sustained complaints.

“I commend UWPD’s efforts to continue promoting transparency and building community trust by demonstrating its practical commitment to equity,” UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank said. “The Equity Dashboard is another example of the power of collaboration and partnership, and I am confident it will bring great value to the entire UW-Madison community.”

In addition to the numbers, the dashboard also shares general information about programs and services offered by the UW-Madison Police Department – department policies, staff demographics, department programs, and how community members can get involved in UWPD’s work are all highlighted.

“As a step forward, we hope the UWPD Equity Dashboard will serve as a key tool internally and in collaboration with our campus community in achieving a more just society,” said Dr. Louis Macias, UWPD’s Executive Director of Recruitment, Diversity, and Inclusion. “There is much work to be done and few simple solutions. We hope the dashboard inspires the questions, discussions, partnership and critical examination needed to fully align with our mission.”

An incredible amount of work went into this effort – as such, UWPD would like to convey our sincere thanks to everyone who was involved in the dashboard development process. The work the department has done with our community members and stakeholders has started important conversations, cultivated partnerships, and is inspiring change. We’re excited to keep the momentum moving forward.

About the UW-Madison Police Department:

The UW-Madison Police Department is a full-service law enforcement agency on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus in Madison, WI. We are leaders in innovative problem-oriented policing. We value diversity and respect the dignity of all people. We uphold individual and constitutional rights and promote campus community well-being through collaborative approaches to ensuring safety.

Serving in partnership to support and facilitate the educational mission of UW-Madison, we seek to cultivate a campus environment in which all students, faculty, and staff are safe.