APD Policy and Practice Updates

In November 2020, the City of Atlanta engaged the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) and APD Urban Planning and Management (APD Urban) to conduct a comprehensive study of Atlanta Police Department (APD) policies and practices. Since then, both PERF and APD Urban worked closely with community members, APD staff, and leading subject matter experts to conduct numerous town halls, focus groups, site visits, data analyses, and surveys. The culmination of these efforts include a final report with approximately 150 recommendations that provide APD with additional tools, resources, and knowledge to ensure policing practices and organizational philosophy.

PERF’s recommendations covered a variety of topics. PERF hosted “Kitchen Cabinet” discussions in which leading experts and law enforcement professionals discussed pressing and emerging policing issues; these discussions produced many recommendations from opportunities to improve officer morale and wellness to ideas for recruitment and hiring improvements. APD began implementing many of these recommendations immediately and is still in the process of implementing others, as you can see in Section 1 of the dashboard below.  

In addition to the “Kitchen Cabinet” recommendations, PERF experts recommended focused strategies for addressing key APD issues. PERF’s report included several recommendations specific to APD’s Crime Strategy, including incorporating more and improved data analysis into crime fighting strategies (See Section 2 in dashboard). Additionally, PERF identified several opportunities to refine APD’s policies and standard operating procedures around officers’ use of force and more opportunities to improve analysis and reporting on use of force (See Sections 3 and 4 in dashboard).

APD also worked with PERF to implement their Integrated Communications, Assessment, and Training (ICAT) model into APD recruit, field, and in-service training to improve support officers’ ability to defuse critical incidents (See Section 5 in dashboard). PERF made additional recommendations to improve APD’s internal procedures for handling critical incidents, including an early intervention system and organizational changes to the Office of Professional Standards (See Section 6 in dashboard). PERF’s final recommendations identified opportunities for APD to improve communications and transparency (See Sections 7 & 8 in dashboard).

As APD makes more progress addressing PERF’s recommendations, we will continue to update these dashboards with the latest information.