Skip to main content

Factsheet: Crime, Race and Juvenile Justice Policy in Perspective

While some have denounced the comments by former Education Secretary and Drug Czar William Bennett, they unfortunately believe his comments are based in fact. Those who  believe that African American or Latino youth are more “criminal” than any other ethnic groups are simply wrong. The real facts tell us much more than stereotypes, or  musings—both of which obscure the well-documented disparate treatment accorded  African Americans compared to whites within the justice system. These comments on racially disparate crime also overlook the area of “corporate crime.”

For over a decade, the Justice Department has been working to reduce the racial disparity seen in juvenile arrests and juvenile imprisonment, a fact that underscores the existence of racially disparate arrests and sentences. African American youth arrest rates for drug violations, assaults and weapon offenses are higher than arrest rates for white youth—even though both report similar rates of delinquency.

Download

Factsheet

Keywords: Factsheet, Juvenile Justice, Racial Disparities

Posted in Juvenile Justice

JPI's work

Through a combination of groundbreaking research, communications strategies and technical assistance, we inform advocates, policymakers and the media about fair and effective approaches to justice and community well-being.

Learn more »

Contribute

We envision a society with safe, equitable and healthy communities; just and effective solutions to social problems; and the use of incarceration only as a last resort. Please help us end the #IncarcerationGeneration with a generous contribution.

Contribute »

Sign up for our newsletter