Public Safety

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RAND work on public safety issues ranges from policing and prisons to violent crime and the illegal drug trade, as well as homeland security and emergency preparedness. RAND research helps inform policy debates that are often riddled with arguments driven not by evidence but by emotion and ideology.

  • A car crash in an urban area, photo by kadmy/Getty Images

    Report

    Autonomous Vehicles and the Future of Auto Insurance

    Dec 17, 2020

    The existing automobile insurance system in the United States should be flexible enough to accommodate the introduction of autonomous vehicles. Some changes to the insurance model may be indicated as vehicles incorporate higher levels of automation, but it is too early to make radical changes.

  • RAND Gun Policy in America logo

    Project

    Informing the Gun Policy Debate

    Mar 1, 2018

    RAND's Gun Policy in America initiative provides information on what scientific research can tell us about the effects of gun laws. Our goal is to establish a shared set of facts that will improve public discussions and support the development of fair and effective gun policies.

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    Project

    Crime and Justice Research at RAND Europe

    Using evidence-based analysis to help inform policymaking both in the UK and internationally, RAND Europe offers insights into a variety of issues from the size of illicit markets to how to tackle serious organised crime and reoffending.

    Sep 2, 2020

  • Industrial Hemp (Cannabis sativa) being grown in Queenstown, MD USA

    Commentary

    Don't Entangle COVID-19 Relief with Cannabis Legalization

    Cannabis legalization is a multifaceted decision that has implications for health, safety, and social equity. Whether legalization could fund COVID-19 relief should not be a major focus of debates.

    Aug 28, 2020

  • Child wearing a face mask and gloves, holding a binder with Back to School and drawings of coronavirus, photo by Amy Mitchell/Getty Images

    Commentary

    To Reopen Schools Safely, Prepare for New COVID-19 Test Capabilities

    Safely reopening K–12 schools for in-person instruction requires complicated protocols ranging from symptom monitoring to physical distancing, as well as containment of transmission in the community. State policymakers and school leaders could begin planning now to draft, pilot, and evaluate protocols for reopening schools that incorporate rapid testing.

    Aug 28, 2020

  • Blog

    Voting in a Pandemic, the U.S. Postal Service, Defunding the Police: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on Americans' views about voting in the age of COVID-19, what makes the U.S. Postal Service so essential, why some in law enforcement may be open to “defunding the police,” and more.

    Aug 28, 2020

  • A person donates blood during a Red Cross and Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team blood drive at Chase Field in Phoenix, April 28, 2020, photo by Ross D. Franklin/AP Images

    Essay

    A Stable Blood Supply Is Critical in the COVID-19 Era

    Millions of lives depend on the U.S. blood supply. But no one knows exactly how much blood is in the system at any given time, or whether it's enough to meet demand. The federal government has no way to collect that data, and hospitals don't share it with each other. What can be done to strengthen the system?

    Aug 27, 2020

  • Close up of a doctor holding a clipboard, talking to a patient, photo by Chinnapong/Getty Images

    Journal Article

    Monthly Patient Volumes of Buprenorphine-Waivered Clinicians in the US

    This cross-sectional study examines the number of patients prescribed buprenorphine by waivered-clinicians. Evidence shows waivered-clinicians who are able to prescribe buprenorphine treat fewer patients than their limit allows. With so much unmet demand for OUD treatment, this suggests the need for ongoing efforts to address treatment barriers.

    Aug 27, 2020

  • An illustration of people from diverse racial backgrounds. Image by Lyubov Ivanova / Getty Images

    Content

    RAND Center to Advance Racial Equity Policy

    RAND has launched a new research center dedicated to racial equity. The center supports a portfolio of innovative, high-impact racial equity research and analysis, creates a clearinghouse to help coordinate related efforts, and collaborates with organizations dedicated to advancing racial equity.

    Aug 25, 2020

  • Police continue their patrols as officials begin what they are calling a slow and methodical clean-up and removal of a large homeless encampment along the Santa Ana River Trail in Anaheim, California, January 22, 2018, photo by Mike Blake/Reuters

    Report

    The Law Enforcement Response to Homelessness

    Despite lacking the tools and resources to address the underlying causes of homelessness, police are constantly under pressure from business leaders and communities to “fix” it. Some law enforcement agencies are trying new approaches, but they need support to improve these efforts.

    Aug 25, 2020

  • NYPD officers distribute face masks in Washington Square Park, New York City, May 10, 2020, photo by nycshooter/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Police Officers: This Article Will Make You Better at Combatting Misinformation

    By deliberately addressing misinformation, police officers can promote safe and healthy behaviors among those in their communities. The actions they take to combat misinformation and improve protections in their communities are a critical part of the collective campaign to end the pandemic and help people return to their normal lives.

    Aug 24, 2020

  • Homeless encampments along Central Avenue in downtown Los Angeles, California, photo by MattGush/Getty Images

    Report

    How Social Service Providers in L.A. County Are Responding to COVID-19

    Social service providers have adapted quickly to ensure continuity of care for their clients during the pandemic. Obstacles have included a lack of technology access among clients, reductions in revenue and workforce, difficulties having clients shelter in place, and other stressors on staff.

    Aug 24, 2020

  • Testimony

    Testimony

    The Strategic National Stockpile and COVID-19: Rethinking the Stockpile: Addendum

    Document submitted August 21, 2020, as an addendum to testimony before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs on June 24, 2020.

    Aug 24, 2020

  • Woman using a phone with a coronavirus tracking app installed, photo by kzenon/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Mobile Health Surveillance Is Here to Stay. How Do We Protect Privacy?

    Mobile phone surveillance can augment public health interventions to manage COVID-19 and might help countries prepare for the next outbreak. But these programs collect sensitive health and behavior data. That raises significant risks to personal privacy and civil liberties.

    Aug 20, 2020

  • Toyota-backed self driving company Pony.ai begins to provide autonomous electric vehicles to deliver packages from local e-commerce platform Yamibuy during the outbreak of COVID-19 in Irvine, California, April 28, 2020, photo by Mike Blake/Reuters

    Commentary

    How States and Localities Might Approach Operational Design Domains for AVs

    An operational design domain (ODD) is a description of the conditions in which an autonomous vehicle is designed to operate safely. No nationwide ODD policy exists, but because ODD is partly about the characteristics of a specific location, state and local policies could be useful.

    Aug 20, 2020

  • Camden County Police officers patrol on the streets of Camden, New Jersey, amid nationwide protests in the aftermath of the death in Minneapolis police custody of George Floyd, June 11, 2020, photo by Jessica Kourkounis/Reuters

    Report

    Would Law Enforcement Leaders Support Defunding the Police?

    Police have expressed frustration with being expected to handle complex social problems such as homelessness and substance use. Budgeting less money for police and more for other public safety strategies might appeal to law enforcement if these efforts relieve some of the unrealistic expectations on them.

    Aug 20, 2020

  • A Boogaloo Boy stands with protesters demanding that federal officers leave the federal courthouse in Portland, Ore., on July 25, 2020, photo by Alex Milan Tracy/Sipa USA via Reuters

    Commentary

    Building the Boogaloo Brand: Why the Movement Succeeds in Attracting New Followers

    The Boogaloo should not be dismissed as disaffected far-right youth enamored with firearms. Several acts of political violence on American soil are connected to the movement, including homicides. It's a fast-growing, anti-government and anti-police movement with broad appeal.

    Aug 19, 2020

  • The U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., photo by lucky-photographer/Getty Images

    Blog

    Summer Reading List for Congress

    During the August recess Hill staff should have an opportunity to step back from the fast pace of votes and hearing preparation to examine priorities for the fall and beyond. This list of must-read research and commentary covers some policy issues they will likely be addressing after the break.

    Aug 18, 2020

  • Homicide Process Mapping

    Multimedia

    Homicide Process Mapping: A Guide for Solving More Crimes

    Senior operations researcher John Hollywood describes the guidebook, Homicide Process Mapping, which lays out proven strategies for solving crimes.

    Aug 17, 2020

  • Blog

    L.A.'s High Unemployment, RAND's New Research Center, Twitter: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on unemployment in the Los Angeles area, the new RAND Center to Advance Racial Equity Policy, food consumption in the UK, and more.

    Aug 14, 2020

  • A young Black boy writing at a table, photo by kali9/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Elevating Equity in Los Angeles Juvenile and Criminal Justice Reform

    At age 13, Black children are placed in juvenile detention at nearly 3.5 times the rate of white children. By age 17, that ratio increases to 4.5 to 1. And the trend continues into adulthood. Without ongoing attention and deliberate policies and programs, injustices are likely to persist.

    Aug 12, 2020

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    From Awareness to Action: Accounting for Infrastructure Interdependencies in Disaster Response and Recovery Planning

    We suggest that awareness of the vulnerabilities in interdependent infrastructure systems needs to be coupled with coordinated action and collaboration among government agencies, communities, and industries.

    Aug 12, 2020