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Identifying and Preventing Gender Bias in Law Enforcement Response to Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence

General Material
Published Date
December, 2015

One critical part of improving law enforcement agencies' (LEAs’) response to allegations of sexual assault and domestic violence is identifying and preventing gender bias in policing practices. This guidance document from the U.S. Department of Justice is intended to reflect and further the department’s partnership with the police leaders, line officers and detectives who work to ensure that policing is free from bias and to uphold the civil and human rights of the communities they serve. The purpose of this guidance is to:

  • examine how gender bias can undermine LEAs’ response to sexual assault and domestic violence; and
  • provide a set of basic principles that—if integrated into LEAs’ policies, trainings and practices—will help ensure that agencies’ efforts to keep victims safe and hold offenders accountable are not undermined, either intentionally or unintentionally, by gender bias.