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The results of a research project by a University of Wisconsin Oshkosh assistant professor on racial disparities in Outagamie County policing will be presented at a public event this week in Appleton.

Addressing Front-End System Inequities To Promote Change is one of 25 projects that make up the 2023 cohort of the Catalyst Grant Program, a collaboration from the Urban Institute and the Microsoft Justice Reform Initiative. The program supports projects designed to leverage data and technology to advance racial equity in policing, prosecution and prevention.

Matt Richie, assistant criminal justice professor at UW Oshkosh and 2012 UWO graduate, will discuss his findings at 1 p.m. Friday at the Bubolz Nature Preserve, 4815 N. Lynndale Ave., Appleton. The event includes a data presentation and a panel discussion.

Earlier this year, Richie helped bring together the Fox Valley nonprofit People of Progression and Outagamie County law enforcement to get the project off the ground. People of Progression, a Black-led organization that launched in 2020, offers advocacy, support and other resources for the local Black community. The grant supports an effort that will include both a deep dive into law enforcement data and input from the community in the form of focus groups and surveys.

Richie collected the calls for service data for all of Outagamie County in 2021—meaning information related to more than 200,000 calls to police. His work includes a close look at suspicious person calls made to police and their outcomes. The project also included the gathering of feedback from the community.

For more on the project, read our story from August.

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