UOPD signs national pledge to diversify its workforce

UOPD patrol car

UO Police Department Chief Matt Carmichael has signed the department on to the 30X30 Pledge, a national effort to improve the representation and experiences of women in law enforcement.

Women currently make up only 12 percent of sworn officers and 3 percent of police leadership across the U.S., while research has shown that women tend to use less force and less excessive force in the field. Female officers are also named in fewer complaints and lawsuits and can achieve better outcomes for crime victims, in sexual assault cases in particular.

At the heart of the 30X30 Pledge is the goal of ensuring that at least 30 percent of each participating agencies’ recruits in 2030 are women. The pledge also includes commitments to agencies assessing their current status with regards to gender equity, identifying factors that may be driving disparities in recruitment, assessment, retention and promotion, and implementing strategies to eliminate those barriers.

“It is with great excitement that I have signed the 30X30 pledge on behalf of the UOPD to increase the number of female recruits here and to support women at our agency throughout their career,” Carmichael said. “This initiative is in complete alignment with our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, and we can make it happen.”

UOPD already surpassed the 30 percent target in its recent hiring wave of nine new community service officers over the summer. Four of those officers, which are new, unarmed UOPD positions, are women. The department created the new positions by eliminating seven vacant sworn police officer positions last year.

“We are really proud of the diversity in our new CSO recruitment class, in terms of gender but also ethnicity, career path and perspective,” Carmichael said. “It’s a great first step towards achieving the goals of the 30X30 initiative.”