The website ProPublica recently published a story that focused on the scientific validity of COMPAS, raising questions about racial bias. As a result of the article and the subsequent national attention that it garnered, Northpointe launched an in-depth analysis of the data samples used by ProPublica.
As the creators of the COMPAS, a widely used and trusted Risk and Needs Assessment, it’s important to us to be part of the conversation. There are some common myths in play, and we want to address those - but more importantly, we want to share more about who Northpointe is and speak plainly on the issue of bias in our criminal justice system.
You’ve heard that risk/needs assessments can provide plenty of benefits: these tools support criminal justice professionals as they make decisions related to pretrial release, inmate classification and programming, supervision case management, and treatment needs.
Northpointe, Inc. d/b/a equivant, issues the following in response to the article in the January 17, 2018 Science Advances online open access journal article titled “The accuracy, fairness, and limits of predicting recidivism”.
We are driven by a justice system that instills confidence through its processes and is accessible to all citizens. Like you, equivant aims to embrace community while advancing justice and deliver better outcomes to all who touch the justice system. We do this through our deep domain knowledge, modern technologies, and expert services that help promote public and individual safety by informing decisions at every step.