Saturday, June 13, 2020

The failure to police

 From the 2018/19 Annual Police Report:
Addressing cultural unconscious bias 
Police understands the potential for unconscious bias when it comes to the use of discretion and decisionmaking. For this reason, we have made the identification and management of unconscious bias a priority. The first step in managing bias is having all staff identify that they have them. People can then challenge their biases to understand how they influence their decisions and behaviours. To achieve this, we have started to roll out targeted unconscious bias training to key staff across the organisation.

Um. Training in unconscious bias. That sounds lucrative.

Here's a Wellington course at Vic. $595 for a day.

Nice work if you can get it.

Personally I'd like the taxes we pay for policing to be spent on .... policing. That would be novel.

It's a while since I've needed the services of the police but there is a constant theme on talk-back that calls about car theft or home burglary are logged and not much more. Looks like it's not just jungle drums either. From the report

Property crime - Percentage of victimisations where investigation is finalised within the year because Police determine ‘no crime has occurred’ or the ‘offender is proceeded against’: 13%


Kiwiwit said...

The whole field of unconscious bias is built on poor research and unscientific conclusions. The original Implicit Association Test by sociologists Greenwald and Banerjee has been thoroughly debunked (see for example: One of the main problems with it is that the researchers never controlled for the universal psychological trait of novelty aversion - the natural tendency of all human beings (and indeed all animals) to be suspicious of unfamiliar things. This is why we tend to stick to the foods, music, writers, etc, that we know and find it difficult to adopt new tastes. To control for novelty aversion, the researchers would have needed to have tested only white people who grew up in a community of predominantly black people and vice-versa (and interestingly the research showed black people demonstrated just as much implicit bias as white people). Greenwald and Banerjee have made a lot of money out of their IAT and another of the original researchers, Brian Nosak, became so uncomfortable with the claims being made that he dissociated himself from it. Unfortunately, it is one of those areas of the social sciences where politics has crowded out good science.

Tom Hunter said...

You might want to dig into the academic bullshit behind "unconscious bias" also.

Lindsay Mitchell said...

A reader emailed this relevant link:

"Cultural awareness training for health professionals is now commonplace across a variety of sectors....The idea that cross-cultural communication cannot be enhanced until all workplaces are purged of any vestige of bias and the comfort of protected groups is preserved, is unrealistic and misguided. Moreover, not all cross-cultural communication breakdowns are damaging. Many are positive learning moments as individuals navigate their way through complex, dynamic environments....Cultural awareness workshops and their derivatives are often well-intentioned and genuine efforts to improve cross-cultural engagement in health care settings are a laudable pursuit. Yet these interventions are implemented without evidence and exist on face validity alone. Decades of research point to their ineffectiveness, despite billions of dollars being spent on their operation."

Oi said...

Academia is full of unconcious bias. Universities are full of leftist antiauthoritism and have been biasing students for decades. I am sure it commenced as a deliberate agenda in the beginning, but it has taken on a life of its own now. My sister and brother in law are prime examples, they simply refuse to countanence any point of view but that ingrained in them at university. These are the people who are teaching your impressionable children. They are a bit long in the tooth now, but would be seen in the past, pulling down monuments to heros past.
OK, I have got a bit sidetracked, but prior to spending the best part of 25 years in the NZ Police, I worked on a power-board with a mixed workforce of equal parts Maori and European, with the odd middle-eastern, Islander and Australian worker thrown in the mix. Cultural bias was just simply not heard of. We shared, we socialised and we worked together. In the words of the cartoon, all for one and one for all.
I joined the police taking those values - unconscious or otherwise - with me. I suppose there were those who had deep seated biases and I guess after years on the streets fighting in the gutters and dealing with over represented young Maori males, I too viewed a carload at 3.30am with a bit of reserve. However, I never felt the entire race was bad. I am married into both Maori and Tongan and they are as wonderful as my european side of the family.

What we need in out Police, is for the heirarchy to stop apologising for enforcing the law of the land and just bloody well do it, stop listening to the activists who use any means at their disposal to allege racial bias - we need to remove apologist judges and we need politicians with some guts.
Unfortunately, this takes me back to my initial point re university imposed unconsious bias.

Ok.... Thats my meandering rant over for the day! LOL