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Disarming the Political Grenade

Instructor wrote: In my opinion, most officers that do so don't set out to racially profile.  I believe officers attempt to employ criminal profiling when conducting enforcement but may inadvertently employ racial profiling because of a lack of understanding and differentiation between the two philosophies.  I would agree that racial profiling happens, but I don't necessarily believe that all officers are making a conscious decision to profile in this manner.  I also don't believe this makes an officer a racist.  Training and education are the key factors in reducing these incidents across the law enforcement community.

While this conversation has focused on racial profiling by law enforcement officers, we also see community members calling the police about individuals they don't recognize or believe should be in their community.  How should law enforcement respond to these calls?  In these situations, officers are responding to the calls of the community but the officer is often blamed for racially profiling.  What are your thoughts? 

Does it help law enforcement's cause when they educate the public regarding racial and criminal profiling?  Do we see more claims of racial profiling today than we did 20 years ago?  Why?

Reference:

DeLord, R., Sanders, J. (2006, August).Police Labor-Management Relations (Vol.I): Perspectives and Practical Solutions for Implementing Change, Making Reforms, and Handling Crises for Managers and Union Leaders. U.S. Department of Justice Publications.Washington, D.C.

All questions in bold print need answered list references


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