Diversity, Equity, Inclusion

Equity is core to our mission and our workplace.

Recidiviz’s mission is to safely, equitably, and sustainably reduce incarceration.

That mission isn’t possible without a vibrant, diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for every person who’s tasked with doing the work. In order to build intentional tools, provide responsible data stewardship, and bring insights from academia, the reform ecosystem, practitioners, and the justice-impacted, our team has to reflect the perspectives and lived experiences of the communities we serve. 

This is not a low bar: the tech ecosystem isn’t a diverse one to draw from, and data protection standards for criminal justice data often bar access for justice-impacted staff. But these challenges are opportunities—the system looks the way it does because of these hurdles. As a result, we are all the more committed to building a team that reflects the communities often left out of this conversation, and who have the most to gain by building a smaller and more equitable system. In the process, we are committed to build a workplace that is inclusive, rewarding, and worth time and dedication.

In Practice

DEI at Recidiviz

Diversity, equity, and inclusion are fundamental to our team culture. These principles play an intrinsic role in how we build our team, how we build our tools, and how we evolve our understanding of the issues we work on and our role addressing them, day after day.  

Building our team

  • We build hiring pipelines that will improve our ability to reach candidates of color, formerly incarcerated individuals, and other communities with proximity to the problem we are solving and who are underrepresented in tech 
  • Our Diverse Hiring Working Group, composed of rotating members of the team and team leads, spearheads ongoing improvements of our hiring and professional development processes
  • All new roles have job descriptions screened for gendered language, are posted on job aggregators focused on diverse and justice-impacted communities, and are recruited using structured interview practices
  • All Recidiviz staff in the same role are hired at the same compensation level, to reduce opportunities for unconscious bias or pay discrimination
  • We conduct quarterly diversity audits to review trends in representation, both on our board, in our leadership, and on our team

Building our tools

  • New team members go through a variety of internal training courses on the criminal justice system before writing their first line of code, with special emphasis on the risks of algorithmic bias and the history of the criminal justice system in America.
  • We track both success and backstop metrics for each tool we make—the former to know if we’re having our intended impact, the latter to monitor for unintended ones (e.g., inadvertently increasing disparities). Metrics are tracked in real-time, and reviewed by teams biweekly.
  • Our tools, documentation, and codebase focus on humanizing all people caught up in the system—from victims to the justice-impacted, we are all more than the worst moments of our lives. 
  • Our tools bring clarity to uncomfortable truths. We work with partners to highlight disparities, identify where they’re being introduced, and make them actionable to agencies to act on and monitor over time. 
  • Most importantly, we learn from both agency staff and justice-impacted populations in each region we work in, including both in the development of every tool and service we provide to fully understand their potential effects.

Learn more about our human-centered definition of success

Rebuilding over time

  • Our team discusses a combination of recent academic studies, books, and articles in our book club, Recidireads
  • We welcome guest speakers from across the reform ecosystem, including prominent advocates, academics, and practitioners 
  • Our team regularly re-trains for implicit bias, builds relationships with aligned organizations, and schedules after-hours events around reform talks in New York and San Francisco 
  • Recidiviz celebrates Juneteenth as a staff holiday, supported with suggested readings and discussion groups focused on the intersection of race and the criminal justice system

We’re committed to ongoing development: personally, professionally, and in the context of our work and role in the reform ecosystem.

Meet the people behind the work.

Our Team

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