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Advancing Diversity in Law Enforcement

In December 2015, the Department of Justice and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) launched "Advancing Diversity in Law Enforcement," an interagency research effort designed to further national conversations about diversity in law enforcement by identifying barriers that undermine equal employment opportunity as well as promising practices to reduce those barriers and promote workforce diversity.  This effort was designed to build on President Obama's Task Force on 21st Century Policing, which underscored the importance of a law enforcement "workforce that contains a broad range of diversity, including race, gender, language, life experience, and cultural background," finding that increased diversity not only helps to improve the culture of police departments, but also builds greater trust and legitimacy with all segments of the population.

On October 5, 2016, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta and EEOC Chair Jenny Yang released the final report for the Advancing Diversity in Law Enforcement initiative.  The report, which highlights barriers to and promising practices for achieving greater diversity in our nation's law enforcement agencies, focuses on three key areas - recruitment, hiring, and retention - and aims to assist law enforcement agencies throughout the country as they strive to build a workforce that reflects the diversity of the communities they serve.  The event will highlight the work of local law enforcement leaders who have made progress advancing diversity in their agencies' workforce as well as the ongoing efforts by the Federal government around this important issue.