Rebecca Wexler, Professor

Closed (1) Police Vendor Contracts and Surveillance Accountability

Applications for fall 2021 are now closed for this project.

Civil liberties organizations across the country have been engaged in Freedom of Information Act litigation to sue police departments and get access to the secret contracts that police departments sign with the vendors of surveillance tools and other militarized police technology. This project is a partnership with the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project to collate these contracts from disparate sources and apply a legal analysis to the contracting language. At the end of the semester, the work will be publicly released and distributed. Our analysis will help civil liberties groups and courts to improve police accountability.

Undergraduate URAP fellows will work closely with current law students under my supervision to collect and create a database of the police-vendor contracts that have been publicly released to date from various disparate sources, and to extract key contracting terms for legal analysis. Students will learn introductory principles of contract law and how to bring a legal eye to reading and analyzing a document. Students will also learn about Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) or public records litigation - the source of the documents we will analyze - and may have an opportunity to help develop a new FOIA legal demand.

Day-to-day supervisor for this project: Tyler Takemoto, Graduate Student

Qualifications: Interest, enthusiasm, and commitment.

Weekly Hours: to be negotiated