Illinois debates effectiveness of racial profile data

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Capitol building in Springfield, Illinois.

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Experts disagree on the effectiveness of a 14-year-old Illinois program to collect data on the race of motorists stopped by police as debate is underway on whether to continue the collection .

Some police officials say it’s not worth the time-consuming workload. Jim Kaitschuk (KYET’-shuck) with the Illinois Sheriff’s Association wonders if the data prove anything.

The law expires in 2019. Chicago Democratic Sen. Kwame Raoul (KWAH’-may rah-OOL”) is sponsor of the extension. He says collecting the data is essential to maintaining transparency with the public.

The law was sponsored by former President Barack Obama when he was in the Illinois Senate. The state Department of Transportation has been collecting data since 2004.

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