Vera is a founding member of a global alliance of six NGOs and academic centers called Altus , which you can read about at www.altus.org. We are preparing for Altus Police Station Visitors Week, which will run internationally from October 29 through November 4, 2006 . This project oversees planned visits between Police Departments and community members to promote dialogue and mutual understanding of community concerns and police actions. During the week of the project, a global map on the Altus website will allow participants to track where these visits have been made. Those stations with exceptionally high ratings will be honored and their best practices will be shared internationally. However, there will be no individual ranking of police stations. Please read more about this project on the ... Altus website: www.altus.org/policevisit. You can also read more about Vera at www.vera.org.This is an interesting idea and would make a good project, it seems to me, for local chapters of groups like ACLU, NAACP, LULAC and other civil rights organizations.
UPDATE: A commenter asked for more information on how to get involved, so I emailed Amanda Andrews at the Vera Institute who sent this addendum to what's on the website:
Yes, there is a questionnaire to collect data on the stations. I can send you more information about the actual Kit, which contains 20 questions divided into 5 catagories, These questions and catagories are related to international human rights principles. If you would like the media kit that is being sent to police departments and community groups, which contains 5 sample questions, send me a mailing address and I'll send that information on its way. The actual kit will not be available until immediately before the week of Oct. 29.So there you have it - get in touch with Amanda if you'd like to be involved.
Feel free to post my contact information- firstname.lastname@example.org, 212-376-3094. Any one who would like to participate should contact me first to get more information about the project and to find out what departments in their area are participating. If no stations are participating, we can work together to build that relationship. If there is a station participating, I will send them the contact information for the designated police department official. The community member can then contact that officer to set up their visit. When I get the final "yes" from any Texas stations, I will let you know.