PUSH LA Coalition And RACE COUNTS Partner To Transform Traffic Stops In Los Angeles

In the heart of the multiracial community that makes up L.A., a movement took root—one driven by the passionate pursuit of justice and eradicating racial disparities in traffic stops. A group of advocates united to form PUSH LA and reshape a system marred by racial disparities.

Amidst the bustling cityscape, concerns about racially biased traffic stops became rallying cries for change. Enter PUSH LA, a cross-sector coalition of base building, advocacy and religious/interfaith organizations from L.A. city, who partnered with RACE COUNTS to weave compelling narratives from complex data. For example, the data based on the lived experiences of Black and Latinx low-income Angelenos that PUSH LA and RACE COUNTS analyzed found that the L.A.P.D.’s Metro Division has had a devastating impact on people of color in South L.A. 

In partnership with the PUSH LA, RACE COUNTS analyzed data on L.A.P.D. stops and arrests, specifically arrests for vehicle code charges, from 2018-2020. Specifically, PUSH LA and RACE COUNTS examined the impact of racially biased policing in the city, by calculating the rate of vehicle-related stops and arrests by race and ethnicity and comparing the rates for Angelenos of color to the rate for White Angelenos. Findings from this examination were uplifted in the joint PUSH LA and RACE COUNTS Reimagining Traffic Safety & Bold Political Leadership In Los Angeles report.  

The report unveiled crucial insights about L.A.P.D.’s patrol activities, to evaluate whether pretextual stops are affective, racially biased, and a waste of public resources: 

  • It highlighted how certain communities, like the South of L.A., were disproportionately impacted by racial profiling, income inequality, and geographic disparities. 
  • It quantified the amount of time L.A.P.D. dedicated to potentially harmful activities like racially biased, pretextual traffic stops. 
  • The report proposed policy reforms aimed at enhancing traffic safety, eradicating racially biased policing, and ensuring the efficient use of public resources. 

PUSH LA’s partnership with RACE COUNTS wasn’t just about altering outcomes; it was about shaping the discourse inspired by the public uprising in the summer of 2020 and protests for police reform. As a result of the joint PUSH LA and RACE COUNTS report, the L.A. city council was inspired to create The Traffic Enforcement Alternatives Project Advisory Task Force. By stepping into the world of the report, you’re not just reading; you’re becoming part of a movement—a movement toward a more just and equitable future for all in a safer, more just, and resource-efficient Los Angeles. 

The report’s inception was fueled by a resolute determination to illuminate the pressing issues plaguing L.A.P.D. patrol activities. These issues encompassed racial bias resulting in harm, compromising safety, and the inefficient allocation of precious public resources. PUSH LA’s overarching goal was not just to highlight these problems but to also provide actionable recommendations for the city of Los Angeles. RACE COUNTS, as a data-driven platform, supported the coalition’s advocacy efforts by working together to analyze and share data on law enforcement patrol practices in a way that was accessible to both community members and elected officials.

Below, the report awaits your exploration, your questions, and your engagement.