Lawrence to join select nationwide jurisdictions for alternative 911 cohort

Published: Sep. 5, 2023 at 6:17 PM CDT
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LAWRENCE, Kan. (KCTV) - Douglas County and the City of Lawrence are one of 14 jurisdictions being selected for an initiative designed to support city and county leaders in developing, improving, and expanding unarmed alternative responses to 911 calls.

The local jurisdiction was selected by the Harvard Kennedy School Government Performance Lab.

“When I heard about this opportunity, I knew our community was a great candidate and quickly began working through the application process,” said Lawrence Kansas Police Chief Rich Lockhart. “The policing industry is changing. Like many industries, we’re being asked to do more with less. At the same time, the people we serve are asking for new ways to respond to crisis. We must do both -- and do them effectively.”

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The Cohort includes jurisdictions in Virginia, Massachusetts, Maryland, California, Wisconsin, Oregon and Arizona. The Government Performance Lab offers pro bono applied research support and technical assistance to jurisdictions. That support includes supporting jurisdictions in researching and testing approaches to analyzing 911 call data and designing call decision trees.

Lawrence was selected among an applicant pool of 40 jurisdictions around the country.