Professor Meares Named to Presidential Task Force on 21st Century Policing

Tracey L. Meares, the Walton Hale Hamilton Professor of Law at Yale Law School, has been named to a Presidential Task Force aimed at strengthening community policing and trust among law enforcement and the communities they serve.

President Obama announced the formation of the Task Force on 21st Century Policing on Thursday, December 18, 2014. The Task Force will examine, among other issues, how to build public trust and foster strong relationships between local law enforcement and the communities that they protect, while also promoting effective crime reduction. The Task Force will prepare a report and recommendations to be presented to the President.

Read the White House press release announcing the Task Force.

Earlier this year, Meares was enlisted by the Department of Justice for the launch of the National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice. As part of that initiative, Meares and Professor Tom Tyler launched the Collaborative for Justice Policy Innovation. Meares and Tyler will work directly with other members of the consortium to design intervention programs in six pilot communities around the country based on existing research concerning procedural justice, implicit bias, and race and reconciliation. Read more about this initiative.

Meares is one of the leading national theorists on police legitimacy and, in particular, how racial narratives influence police relationships with minority communities and how deliberate attention to these issues can influence community compliance with the law. Prior to coming to Yale Law School, she was Max Pam Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Studies in Criminal Justice at the University of Chicago Law School. Her research focuses on communities, police legitimacy, constitutional criminal procedure, and legal policy. She has written in both the academic and policy realms about innovations in legitimacy-based violence reduction approaches and has collaborated with multiple jurisdictions in California, Connecticut, Illinois, and New York to implement these strategies.