Crime and Justice

Why this issue matters for racial equity?

U.S. policing has been a historical tool used to maintain and control Blacks from its roots in slavery and Jim Crow, to contemporary racial profiling, stop-search-frisk policies and gang injunctions. In response to the Civil Rights Movement, the white opposition launched the War on Drugs and zero-tolerance policies, which led to an explosion in the prison population, disproportionately affecting Black men.

Policy levers:

Throughout California, community leaders are advocating for reducing sentences, increasing prevention and resources in low-income neighborhoods to help the formerly incarcerated rehabilitate into society and prevent violence without increasing policing.



Truancy arrests, curfew arrests, perception of safety, fatalities from police encounters, incarceration, and access to reentry services.

Key Takeaways

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Reentry Providers
Access to reentry providers is less disparate among races because providers are concentrated in urban areas where more people of color live.
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Killed by Law Enforcement
Black residents are about two times as likely to be killed by law enforcement than Whites, Latino/a, or Asian residents.
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Police Officer Representation
Surprisingly, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders are highly represented among police officers—eight per 1,000 persons—which is greater than the ratio for Whites (three per 1,000) and Blacks (two per 1,000).
06 of 7 key issues

Crime and Justice

Truancy arrests criminalize student tardiness or absenteeism from school and places them in contact at an early age with the criminal justice system. Truancy arrests have not been proven to be effective at increasing attendance or decreasing long-term criminal behavior.

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