Policy Statements

policy-statements2Key Justice Information Sharing and Management Issues Reflected in SEARCH Policy Statements

SEARCH’s policy statements articulate the Membership Group’s core values, express the view of the States on key criminal justice information sharing and management issues, and offer a roadmap for how local, state, and federal governments can achieve progress in these important policy areas.

Each statement articulates a core principle of SEARCH—taken together, the eight statements affirm what SEARCH most values:

  • information sharing among justice, public safety, and homeland security,
  • standardized criminal history records as a basis for information sharing, with positive identification of record subjects,
  • the states’ responsibilities for conducting background screening within a national legal, policy, and operational framework,
  • an integrated justice enterprise,
  • evidence-based decision-making, and
  • privacy and civil liberties protections for criminal history records.

Each statement provides background on what the core principle means, why it is important, who it affects, and how we achieve the end result articulated in the principle.

> Download the complete policy statements

SEARCH Values National Cooperative Information Sharing Efforts SEARCH values collective and cooperative efforts by State, Local, Tribal, Territorial, and Federal jurisdictions to share justice, public safety, and homeland security information.
SEARCH Values Positive Identification Via Biometrics SEARCH values use of biometric identification as a foundation for criminal and civil records exchange and criminal investigations.
SEARCH Values the Official Criminal History Record: A State and Federal Effort SEARCH values a nationwide, standardized, and user-governed approach to sharing criminal record information among the States and Federal agencies.
SEARCH Values a National Structure for Criminal Record Background Screening SEARCH values the legal, policy, and operational framework that the Congress and States have established to govern the exchange of criminal justice information for criminal record background screening.
SEARCH Values States’ Responsibilities for Criminal Record Background Screening SEARCH values the ability and right for the States to establish criminal record background check policies, requirements, practices and fees, within the context of a nationwide approach.
SEARCH Values an Effective, Integrated Justice Enterprise SEARCH values the integration of justice information systems, across all levels of government, to enable the more effective and efficient administration of the justice system.
SEARCH Values Decision-Making Based on Evidence, Research, and Data SEARCH values the use of information and research to inform and improve policy and practice in the administration of justice.
SEARCH Values Protecting Privacy and Civil Liberties SEARCH values privacy and civil liberties protections as fundamental to effective justice information sharing.