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.

About

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.

FINES & FEES

WORKING GROUP

DATA COLLECTION

WORKING GROUP

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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.

READ THE FULL PROPOSAL 

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 

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 

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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

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

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

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

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  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

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

  • 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.

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  • 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.

  • 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:

    • Fines and fees as currently administered cause unequal application of justice.

    • The police department is not following all national standards for data collection, nor making data readily available.

    • 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.

    • Handout: "Problem Statements Ranked" 

  • 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.

  • 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.

    • Presentation: Equality Indicators Structured Decision-Making Progress Report & Next Steps 

  • July 15, 2020 - The Council received a presentation from the Tulsa Police Department on the comprehensive study titled, "A Multi-Method Investigation of Officer Decision-Making and Force Used or Avoided in Arrest Situations." The police department voluntarily participated in this peer-reviewed study. The Council received a presentation on preliminary findings in September 2019. In this meeting, the police department discussed five recommendations from the final report:

    1. Expand use of force data collection

    2. Improve documentation of force, injuries and civilian demeanor

    3. Capture instances when deadly force could have been used but was not

    4. Review the training and force practices of the police canine unit

    5. Review use of force policy and training

  • July 22, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. - In previous meetings, the Council identified data collection as a potential problem to address. During this meeting, the Council received an update from Chief Franklin and Director Kirkland on the new records management system for the police department. In January 2016 the City of Tulsa began the process of implementing a new web-based data collection system. The new system will integrate systems, so data can flow from the first point of contact with law enforcement through the final disposition of a case. All data within the system will meet NIEM (National Information Exchange Model) requirements. In today's discussion, the police department updated the Council on its move from a summary reporting system to an incident-based system, the department's anticipated changes for data collection, and the standards and criteria TPD uses to determine data collection needs and changes.

  • July 22, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. -  Councilors engaged in a facilitated, structured decision-making process to develop objectives and brainstorm alternative solutions for Problem 1: "Fines and fees as currently administered incarcerate too many people. They cause an unequal application of justice." To assist in this process, Councilors individually completed a worksheet for Problem 1 prior to the meeting.

    1. Councilors established the following objectives for Problem 1:

    2. Increase ability for the court to consider individual circumstances of the defendant

    3. Increase compliance with the law

    4. Decrease incarceration for inability to pay

    5. Increase flexibility of the court in administering the penalty, to consider's defendant's circumstances

    6. Increase transparency to the public

    7. Increase the number of (the quality of) notices to defendant of court action

    8. Reduce the dependence of municipality on revenue for operations

    9. Address underlying social problems

    10. Increase ease of compliance with the judgment

    11. Increase access to court and services

    12. Provide a path to expungement 

    13. Demonstrate respect for the defendant 

    • Councilors also began the process of listing possible alternatives. At this point in the exercise, the alternatives listed are part of a brainstorming exercise. It does not indicate an individual Councilor is sponsoring or supporting the alternative.

    • Handout PS1 Notes 

    • Handout PS1 Objectives Worksheet 

  • August 5th, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. - Councilors engaged in a facilitated discussion to review the score for Problem Statement 3: Trust in Police and Problem Statement 2: Data Collection, and also reviewed issues with Problem Statement 4: Biases in police policies and practices have a negative impact on some people

    • Problem Statement 3: Discussed summary of priorities and highlighted three key categories:

      • Information communication

      • Inside operations

      •  Outreach

    • Problem Statement 2

      • Discussed summary of priorities and highlighted key priorities.

    • Problem Statement 4

      • Decided to hold on Problem Statement 4 and come back to it further in the future.

  • August 19th, 2020 at 2:30 p.m. - Councilors from the City Council Equality Indicators Sub-Committee, including Councilor Fahler, Councilor Hall-Harper, Councilor Decter Wright, and Councilor Lakin, gave an update regarding the activities and efforts moving forward. Those updates included:

    • Dividing the council into three working groups to better tackle the three established problem statements. These groups will be:

      • Fine and Fees: Councilor Patrick, Councilor Fahler, Councilor Lakin, and Councilor Kimbro

      • Data Collection: Councilor Hall-Harper, Councilor Cue, Councilor McKee, Councilor Dodson

      • Trust and Accountability: Councilor Hall-Harper, Councilor Fahler, Councilor Decter Wright, Councilor Lakin

    • It was decided that during this meeting, every other week, working groups will report on items they have been working on, next steps, and answer any questions. Alternating weeks will be reserved to discuss the budget. Working groups are asked to establish a clear set of goals, engage with the community, and engage with stakeholders and experts.

  • September 16, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. - Councilors engaged in discussion that included status reports and updates from City Council Equality Indicators working groups.

    • Fines and Fees

      • Councilor Patrick, Councilor Fahler, Councilor Lakin, and Councilor Kimbro

      • The group established the following categories that need to be further addressed as potential areas for improvement, Innovative courts, Innovative payment options, Alternatives to current enforcement practices, Reducing reliance on fines and fees

      • After speaking with representatives for Oklahoma City, the following ideas were highlighted as having potential to be implemented in Tulsa: Increase access to Rural 8 hearings and accessing long term time paid orders, Reduce warrants and time in custody, Increase court process transparency, Provide informational materials to individual’s and establish community outreach liaisons

      •  Next steps include: Gather stakeholders to discuss strategies, Research the impact of fines and fees, Meet with Mental Health and Tulsa County

    • Data Collection group

      • Councilor Hall-Harper, Councilor Cue, Councilor McKee, Councilor Dodson

      • Councilors identified the main issue of not receiving necessary data from the Police Department. Potential alternatives include: Develop a list of data points that need to be collected, Develop best practices for TPD, Identify important data points and rank the most important ones

      • They have identified other groups in the community to work with as well and to help identify what best practices other communities are using.

    • Trust and accountability

      • Councilor Hall-Harper, Councilor Fahler, Councilor Decter Wright, Councilor Lakin

      • Councilors reviewed technology already in place with the Chief of Police

      •  Councilors would like to emphasize putting processes and policies in place that will continue to improve moving forward.

  • September 30, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. - Councilors engaged in discussion that included status reports and updates from City Council Equality Indicators working groups.

    • Fines and Fees Councilors met with the Mental Health Association where they highlighted a few key takeaways: Most of the charges their clients face are crimes of survival or vehicular charges, They reviewed the financial benefits, They are encountering a growing number of people who are experiencing extreme financial hardship

      • Next steps: Incorporate strategies that rely less on arrest and the collection of fines and fees, Institutionalize the strategies that currently exist and move priorities out of pilot programs while avoiding duplication through multiple jurisdictions, Plan to meet with Tulsa County to address the issues with multiple jurisdictions, Finalize a list of individuals who would be beneficial to include in their larger working group.

    • Data Collection

      • Councilors meet to discuss which data is not being collected that needs to be focused on.

      • Identified areas of important data during the duration of an interaction with a police officer:Initiation of an encounter, Focus on what is causing the actions to occur in the first place, Interaction itself, Results after the interaction

      •  Next steps: Councilors will meet with TPD officers to confirm what is being tracked and what steps to take moving forward.

    • Trust and Accountability

      • Next steps: Councilors will meet with the Deputy Mayor, Chief Resiliency Officer, and Police Captain to help better understand the contract with the CNA group. Councilors want to place an emphasis on presenting a unified message though the council, the mayor’s office, and TPD (press conferences, social media, etc.

  • October 7, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. -  Councilors engaged in an update and discussion with Chief Franklin and Captain Seibert for the Tulsa Police Department on the new Community Engagement Unit

    • Community Engagement UnitIs made up of three divisions:Core team: community outreach, resource and, education, Community Engagement Officers, School Liaison Officers, Bike and river patrol, Mental Health Unit, Officer Wellness

    • Goals moving forward: Working to create a “library” of crime prevention material for community presentations. All programs and activities relate back to the COT dashboard. Individually meet with Councilors to better understand the issues and goals they have in their individual districts and how-to better address those moving forward.

  • October 28, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. - Councilors engaged in discussion that included status reports and updates from City Council Equality Indicators working groups.

    • Fines and Fees:Group received and reviewed new info from the Mental Health Association:

      • In 2019, 104 people graduated from the Special Services docket which caused them to avoid an estimated 1162-10920 days in jail, $121,000 fines and fees were waived and saved the city an estimated amount of $261,740-$2,084,911.

      • Also met with Still She Rises representatives to share the Council's work. They provided feedback from a 2018 90-day snapshot of the municipal jail.

      • Discussed Rule 8 hearings and the difficulty with substituting monetary penalties with non-monetary penalties.

      • Continuing partnership with the city's drivers license restoration working group.

      • Participated in What Works Cities call with the project manager for the Cities group.

      • Review information from cities and counties for a fine and fee justice.

      • Next steps:

        • Coordinate a meeting with Tulsa County representatives

        • Finalize stakeholders and city personnel to participate in the larger working committee

    • Data Collection

      • Met with the Community Service Council to assist with developing a list of priorities.

      • A top priority is to meet with the Police Department to determine the data they are currently collecting.

    • Trust and Accountability

      • Recently met with Deputy Mayor Brown and Chief Resiliency Officer Reyes to further discuss the CNA contract. Also discussed the new timeline given the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • January 27, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. -Councilors engaged in discussion with Chief Resilience Officer Kyrstal Reyes to review the 2020 Equality Indicators Report:

    • Six themes of Tulsa Equality Indicators

      • Economic Opportunity

      • Education

      • Housing

      • Justice

      • Public Health Services

    • 2020 scoring

      • City score has increased to 39.61%

    • Councilors were able to ask staff from the Resiliency office a variety of questions regarding the 2020 Equality Indicators Report

  • February 10, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. - Councilors engaged in discussion that included status reports and updates from City Council Equality Indicators working groups.

    • Trust and Accountability: Reviewed the list of priorities

      • Councilors confirmed that both CNA and Community Engagement within TPD are working towards the same goals as they have laid out as priorities. They are reviewing plans for the Community Crisis Response Team. Other priorities include an update on the collection of bargaining agreement, looking into the sinking fund in order to be more transparent with those funds, meeting with the police chief for an update on training regarding implicit bias and other new efforts.

    • Data Collection

      • Councilors met with TPD to review the list of data points and identified barriers to collection. Scheduling a meeting with Dr. Gist and TPS police chief to discuss TPS data collection within the schools. Looking into best practices in other communities to see where find ideas for improvement.

    • Fines and Fees

      • Councilors finalized a large working group which includes the following people: All three municipal judges, Deputy Mayor, municipal court staff, and staff from the resilience office, treasury, legal department, and police department. Completed 2 out of 3 “brainstorming” sessions before moving forward with a finalized working plan. Reviewed the municipal court process while focussing on: Enhancing customer service, enhancing court access, reducing the prevalence of warrants, and alternatives to arrest.

  • March 24, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. - Councilors engaged in discussion that included status reports and updates from City Council Equality Indicators working groups.

    • Trust and Accountability:Visited with Deputy Mayor Brown. Sinking fund report are now archived online on a public website so the public can have access back to fiscal year 2012. Budgeting to expand CRP. Collective bargaining agreement for fiscal year 2021 is complete. Would like to increase transparency with that process moving forward

    • Data Collection: Divided data 3 areas that data points fall into:Not being collected but is being planned to collect: Discretionary stops vs stops for victim reported crimes, Discretionary arrests vs arrests for victim reported crimes, Intelligence led stops, Repeat encounters, Time of addressing an incident, Arrests using force, Specific actions taken from low use of force to strong use, TPS arrests, Conversion rate of making a public intox arrest that leads to the suspect entering the Tulsa Sobering Center, Track trends following a policy change

      • TPD is already collecting and available upon request: When encounters don't result in arrest, When there is consent to a police search, When mental health or substance abuse is primary concern, Incidents on specialized responses, Protective custody encounters, Data is already being collected, Kind of call, Who took the call/recording, Racial disparity on the type, number, and severity of arrest, Use of force categorized as low , Use of deadly force, What results from a stop with no engagement, Minority officer recruitment and retention, Impact of youth engagement activities

      • Next steps: Schedule a meeting with TPS and the Executive Director of Data and Strategy, Reaching out to other departments about best practices, Reaching out to subject matter experts

  • April 28, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. -  Councilors engaged in discussion that included status reports and updates from City Council Equality Indicators working groups.

    • Fines and Fees:Held another large group meeting with the drivers license restoration working group. The working group gave an update on big interests . Continuing the draft work plan which will contain specific action items and timelines. Municipal court liaison position is moving forward on a trial basis. Text message reminder program is moving forward as well

    • Data Collection: Met with Tulsa Public Schools. In the process of schedule a meeting time with TPS to better understand their police force and data reporting

    • Trust and Accountability:Making progress through the ranked alternatives. Increase the number of community resource officers. Push the alert neighbors program. Piloted the program of 71st retail coalition to help limit crime in that area. Operates similar to a neighborhood watch program but for businesses

  • June 9, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. -  Councilors engaged in discussion that included status reports and updates from City Council Equality Indicators working groups.

    • Trust and Accountability:Committee visited Sand Springs to visit with the City Manager who was previously the Police Chief. Use business cards to help engage with the officers and ensure that citizens have a way to keep in contact with officers they have interacted with