Racial profiling has always been a big challenge for police. More often than not we see news on media talking about police profiling people based on their race. It is often said that police always reacts differently to two people with two different racial backgrounds. Many shootings done by police, many of which have their videos on YouTube, have been labeled as actions done in favor of racial prejudice.
Attorney General of Maryland just declared some clear plans about this issue on Tuesday. Brian Frosh, the attorney general, said that new guidelines are to be issued in order to stop the police from taking actions against crimes based on racial profiling. He thought that after following the new guidelines, police will be in a position to reduce the amount of mistrust that public has in the police.
Frosh said that racial profiling was not in the favor of the police since the department has a very dangerous job to do. With the racial profiling, he said, police will not be able to win the trust of the communities it works for. If the police want to live with the public as a community, it has to stop racial profiling. According to him, the new plan with its guidelines will help police reduce that mistrust.
He admired the police on doing its job well despite it being really dangerous, but he also mentioned the fact that racial profile has been happening from the police and the consequences have been bad.
He clearly stated three big disadvantages of racial profiling by police. First, he said that racial profile gives rise to non-cooperation from the people who are actually good citizens and can be of help. Second, due to racial profiling the police are often going after people who are not actual criminals while actual criminals take advantage of such distraction of the police. Third and last, he said that such practice ends all trust that should be there in a community for police to get help from the law abiding citizens.
There are two main parts of the guidelines that have been issued for the police. First, when the police are doing routine work, they will never base their judgement of crimes and criminals based on which religious belief system, race or orientation of sex they belong to. Police can use only allowed racial profiling when they know that the characteristics that are being made part of the investigation really have a connection and impact on the proceedings.
The issue of racial profiling by the police has been getting a lot of air in the recent days. The issue got even more recognize around the country after a ruling was given by US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. In this particular ruling Sheriff Joseph Arpaio, the sheriff working at the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office was declared as being the person who had been making police stops based only on racial profiling. UN Committee Against Torture had recently requested the US government to take actions on police brutality cases in the country.
The committee asked US last year that it should start fresh investigations into all cases that revolve around police brutality. The committee also expressed that it had reservations about the role of police and immigration offices. It showed concern that both the aforementioned entities were not doing their jobs properly and were rather engaging in judging people based on their race. The request also included the point that only certain people were facing force from police and these people were being profiled based on their race, religion or sexual orientation.
Government surveillance centers have also faced some severe criticism from ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union). The Union has expressed concerns over the performance of centers of the government and said that they are engaging in practices that are not in the favor of the public and its privacy. The Suspicious Activity Reports by the centers, according to the Union, were being created more on the basis of which race the people belonged to.
It urged that these centers stop the practice and focus more on strict and ethical standards that did not include accusing people or suspecting them based on their race.