Video Game To Teach Lessons About Racial Profiling
Using a $650,000 grant from the U.S. Justice Department’s Community Oriented Police Services, WILL Interactive developed a 2.5-hour video game, called “Virtual Experience Immersive Learning Simulations,” meant to teach police officers in New Jersey how to pinpoint their own racial prejudices and the racial prejudices in others.
Video game players watch different scenarios and then make choices about the next course of action, and if the choices are correct, the player receives positive reinforcement.
Since 1998 when four minority men were wrongly shot on the New Jersey Turnpike during a traffic shop, the state has been monitoring police officers and their supervisors to ensure proper handling of racial cases; however, the monitoring is scheduled to expire this year and NAACP President Keith Jones will fight elimination of monitoring, asserting that much work is still left to do in the state.
Besides the video game, police officers will learn via real-life training on better interactions with the public.
Abstracted by the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center(NLECTC) from the Bergen Record (NJ) (04/08/05) P. A1; Johnson, Paul H.