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Council Equality Indicators Initiative

The following information is extensive and includes links to hours of public meetings and hundreds of pages of documents and reports. All this information is presented in the spirit of transparency to provide citizens with everything considered and reviewed by City Councilors. Additional information will be added to this page as it reviewed over the course of this initiative.

In 2018, the City of Tulsa partnered with the Community Service Council to produce the first Equality Indicators report. This annual report uses data to measure equality as it relates to six themes: economic opportunity, education, housing, justice, public health, and services in Tulsa. Each theme is broken down into topics.

The 2018 report was released to establish a statistical baseline for understanding inequity in Tulsa. The City is working to find collective solutions to items highlighted in the report. As a part of this collective process, the Council voted in March to hold Special Meetings related to the topics under the fourth theme: justice.

Goals First Adopted by the Tulsa City Council:

  1. Building trust between the residents of Tulsa and Law Enforcement.
  2. Improving transparency in city government especially as it pertains to justice.
  3. Providing an opportunity for community stakeholders to share their expertise and insight as to why the numbers exist as reported and make recommendations to improve outcomes.
  4. Ensuring that everyone knows the same statistical data and information, how it is reported and collected.
  5. Potentially leading to policy changes that will improve outcomes for Tulsans.


Watch the discussion on the proposed public meetings format:


Four special meetings were scheduled to begin in the summer. For each meeting, the Council heard from and asked questions of panelists of experts and professionals from a variety of fields. Public input on questions and issues the Councilors should address to each panel were received from the public at the regular Wednesday Council meetings held a week prior to each of the special meetings.

Special meetings focused on the following selected equality indicators:

1. June 26, 2019: racial and gender disparities in police arrests of juveniles

No additional documents/handouts.

Video of the Special Meeting Part I:

Video of the Special Meeting Part II:

Video of Public Comment on June 19: Item 8b starts at 55:18


2. July 17, 2019: racial disparities in police use of force and current practices to improve outcomes


Video of the Special Meeting Part I: 

Video of the Special Meeting Part II: 

Video of Public Comment on July 10: Item 8b starts at 2:02:15 


3. August 14, 2019: minority and gender underrepresentation in the police department and current practices to improve recruitment and retention of minority officers


Video of the Special Meeting Part I: 

Video of the Special Meeting Part II: 

Video of Public Comment on August 7: Item 8b starts at 42:56 


4. September 25, 2019: racial and gender disparities in police arrests of adults


Video of the Special Meeting Part I: 

Video of the Special Meeting Part II: 

Video of Public Comment on September 11: Item 8j starts at 34:00 


Community Listening Session

Councilors also received comments and input from citizens on June 22 regarding the City of Tulsa Equality Indicators report on the theme of Justice. The session aimed to help inform Councilors’ questions for the four special meetings on the equality indicators.

Video Part I 

Video Part II 

Video Part III 


Resources and Studies

Below are materials either reviewed by Councilors in preparation for the special meetings, or information that was presented to the Council relating to the equality indicators.

  1. Tulsa Equality Indicators Annual Report 2018 

  2. Tulsa Equality Indicators Annual Report 2019 

  3. Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) Assessment Report 2017 

  4. Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) Assessment Report 2018 

  5. Gallup-Tulsa Citivoice Index Report 2018  

  6. Tulsa Police Department Internal Affairs Annual Report 2017 

  7. Tulsa Commission on Community Policing Findings and Recommendations 

  8. Vera Center on Sentencing & Corrections Report to Tulsa County Stakeholders on Jail Reduction Strategies August 2017 

  9. City of Tulsa’s Community Policing Dashboard  

  10. A Multi-Method Investigation of Officer Decision-Making and Force Used or Avoided in Arrest Situations, to examine Tulsa Police arrest and use of force decisions 
     Video of the presentation to the Council on September 25
  11. “Get on the Ground!”: Policing, Poverty, and Racial Inequality in Tulsa, Oklahoma - A Case Study of US Law Enforcement from Human Rights Watch Video of the presentation to the Council on October 16: Item 10 starts at 52:28 



October 16, 2019 - Following the conclusion of the special meetings, Councilors worked to identify meeting outcomes, outline possible action steps and coordinate future work of the Council related to the equality indicators.

  • Video: 

October 23, 2019 - As part of its review, Councilors identified the need to collaborate with other agencies and communities that affect Tulsans as it relates to justice. The first such meeting was with Tulsa County representatives, including Sheriff Vic Regalado and Chief Deputy County Commissioner John Fothergill, on the Tulsa County government structure as it relates to the Tulsa County Criminal Justice System.

  • Video:

October 30, 2019
- Councilors specified the need to identify other stakeholders who may also be working on issues related to the equality indicator themes of justice. Councilors met with the following groups, whose members are subject matter experts, to get an update on their work and identify any areas where working together could be beneficial while ensuring no duplication of efforts:

Hannibal B. Johnson with the Mayor’s Police and Community Coalition (MPACC) discussed its activities to enhance police/community relations and its recommendations of best practices designed to enhance trust. MPACC was established in 2008 with the goal of building relationships between Tulsa Police leadership and the community. Further discussion centered on the Youth Forum and MPACC’s partnership with Tulsa Public Schools, MPACC’s role in policy-oriented questions rather than proposing policy and other strategies to build relationships and measure the success of those strategies.

Representatives of the police department’s Citizen Advisory Board and Action Groups discussed their role and activities to foster collaboration between the police department and Tulsa’s citizens.

The police department’s Citizen Advisory Board began as a result of recommendations from the Mayor’s Police and Community Coalition (MPACC). It acts as a sounding board for the Police Department and the community. The police chief meets quarterly with the 12 members of the Chief’s Advisory Board. Each member brings information back to their communities. Each patrol division has a Citizen Action Group of 6-8 community members, who bring insight on community issues.

Major Laurel Roberts discussed Project Trust, a group of Tulsa Police officers who go into schools and provide an in-depth introduction to law enforcement. Deputy Chief Eric Dalgleish, Aliye Shimi, Executive Director of Tulsa Metropolitan Ministry, and Danny Williams, Partner with the Law Firm, Conner and Winters, also spoke.

  • Video:

November 20, 2019
 - Councilors discussed a revised schedule, framework and processes to be followed for the Council's work related to the Equality Indicators. It was the consensus of the Council to move forward with a facilitated, structured decision-making process. The first part of the process is to hold a debriefing of each of the four Special Meetings to identify problems and key themes.

  • Video: Item 13 starts at 1:00:19

Councilors held a debriefing of the Equality Indicators Special Meeting held August 14 which covered racial and gender disparities in Tulsa Police Department employees.

  • Video:

December 4, 2019 - 
Councilors held a debriefing of the Equality Indicators Special Meeting held June 26 which covered racial disparities in Juvenile Arrests.

December 18, 2019 - 
Councilors held a debriefing of the Equality Indicators Special Meeting held September 25 which covered racial and gender disparities in Adult Arrests.

January 8, 2020 - 
Councilors held a debriefing of the Equality Indicators Special Meeting held July 17 which covered racial disparities in officer use of force.

January 15, 2020 - 
Councilors received a presentation on the Council’s formal scope of authority and also identified their informal authority. Councilors then began an exercise to identify stakeholders and determine each stakeholder’s associated interest and influence. The Council received a handout to guide future structured decision-making conversations.

February 5, 2020  - 
The Councilors continued their discussion on identifying stakeholders and their associated interest and influence. Stakeholders were then categorized into the following groups: Directly Affected and Generally Affected. The Councilors also identified additional influencers not captured under the stakeholder category.

  • Video:

February 12, 2020 - 
Councilors engaged in a facilitated, structured decision-making process to identify potential problems and issues raised by the Equality Indicators meetings.  To assist in this process, Councilors reviewed handouts summarizing previously identified potential problem statements, formal and informal authority, and stakeholders.

March 4, 2020 - 
Councilors reviewed and discussed a list of potential problems that were divided into four categories: Trust, Police/Department, Laws, and Implicit Bias. Councilors then engaged in a exercise to narrow the problem statements under these categories. After problem statements were developed, Councilors then prioritized the order in which to address the potential problems.

March 11, 2020 - 
Councilors reviewed the results of the prioritization exercise from the March 4, 2020 meeting. The following problem statements received the highest scores:

  1. Fines and fees as currently administered cause unequal application of justice.
  2. The police department is not following all national standards for data collection, nor making data readily available.
  3. Some citizens do not trust the police because of an apparent lack of accountability and transparency.

Councilors began the process of developing objectives for each of the problem statements. Objectives are defined as a set of values for any proposed solution.


On March 11, 2020 the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the coronavirus COVID-19 disease to be a pandemic. Later that week the United States declared a National State of Emergency. Over the next few months, Mayor GT Bynum issued multiple executive orders to ensure proper social distancing measures during the pandemic. In compliance with CDC guidelines and the revised Open Meeting Act, the City Council moved to virtual Council meetings. Due to the collaborative nature of the Equality Indicators Initiative, the City Council temporarily paused its meetings related to the structured decision-making process.


June 17, 2020 -  The Council received an update from City Staff and the Council Equality Indicators subcommittee. The subcommittee recommended the Council resume its structured decision-making process in July. In addition, the subcommittee recommended scheduling a presentation on the new police records management system to understand functional improvements and anticipated data collection changes. The Council will recap the process and review the plan to resume in more detail on June 24.

  • Video: Discussion starts at approximately 1:49:00, Agenda Item #7

June 24, 2020
- Darita Huckabee gave a presentation entitled: “Equality Indicators Structured Decision-Making: Progress Report & Next Steps”. To date, the Council’s decision-making process has included exercises to identify the City Council’s formal and informal powers, identify stakeholders, and draft and rank problem statements.

The Council then reviewed the next steps for the process which include identifying objectives that will be used to evaluate any solution, brainstorm alternative solutions, evaluate alternatives and tradeoffs, select alternatives, and develop action steps. The Council scheduled additional presentations on Use of Force and data collection. In addition, the Council made requests for additional data on fines and fees.

Updates to this page will be added as they become available