As protests against police brutality and systemic racism fill our streets across the country, changes must be made that will involve the police, the courts, and corrections. The demands for change have sparked soul-searching by local, state, and federal agencies about their own roles in a massive criminal justice system. Public attention on the use of lethal force by law enforcement (LE), particularly within minority communities, has surged in recent years following multiple high-profile cases involving the killings of unarmed black men by police. The history of racial disparity in the criminal justice system in the U.S. has been longstanding. The racial dynamics in sentencing have changed over time and reflect a move from explicit racism to more surreptitious manifestations and outcomes. according to a new report from the U.S. Sentencing Commission, Black men are sentenced to far more time in prison than white men for committing similar crimes. We need to be more informed in the development of prevention strategies, improve risk assessment, and modify LE response to increase the safety of communities and officers and prevent fatalities associated with LE intervention. There are close to 18,000 federal, state, local, and city departments in the U.S. Every state and federal branch has its own nomenclature for agencies and their power and responsibilities and funding.
Crime control is more collaborative and involves community efforts to be effective. Criminal justice agencies will have to open themselves more to different elements of the community. Call it guardian policing, trust policing, problem-solving policing, relationship-based policing, community policing, or partnership policing. The many names share one vision: humane, compassionate, culturally fluent police officers, who have a mindset of respect, do not fear black men, and serve long enough to know residents’ names, speak their languages, and help improve the neighborhood.
Class, I have given you a great deal of latitude here. You were to think about these questions and home in on your topic. You should have reflected on each of the topics we have discussed throughout the course and answered the questions.
For this essay assignment I am going to have you consider the following:
Is political influence pervasive within criminal justice organizations?
Would you consider hiring practices by the police to be of paramount importance, e.g., hiring officers that are representative of the community they serve?
Is there value in police officers having attained some level of higher education, e.g., a Bachelor’s degree minimum?
* PLEASE INCLUDE AN ABSTRACT IN THE BEGINNING*