Applying Psychological Science, Benefiting Society

Criminal and Juvenile Justice rss

Jury Bias: Can You Argue the Facts When Race Enters the Mix?

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August 22, 2017

Research tells us that facts not “relevant” to a given case impact jurors’ decisions – these are called extralegal factors and range from personal characteristics like race or gender to how a juror sees others. Scientific data show, for example, Blacks are treated the worst in criminal and civil cases. Studies also show jurors’ biases about race may have something to do with their decisions –that is, their verdict. Yet, researchers don’t quite agree…

[CROSS-POST] Put Aside What We Don’t Know and Support Justice-Involved Youth with Mental Health Needs

We need to be careful about the language we use to discuss mental health and juvenile justice—and even more careful about how we meet the mental health needs of justice-involved youth.

Police tape saying "police line do not cross"

Why Evidence-Based Community Policing Needs to be the Norm, Not an Exception

Longstanding tensions between police and communities of color have reached a boiling point in the United States. If we are to heal as nation, we must first acknowledge and move beyond entrenched societal stereotypes that reduce people of color, particularly black men, to suspected criminals who should be feared.

Racial Trauma is Real: The Impact of Police Shootings on African Americans

There have been many changes within the criminal justice system as a means to deter crime and to keep citizens safe. However, research demonstrates that often times men of color are treated harshly which leads to negative perceptions of police officers. The recent shootings in Baton Rouge, Falcon Heights, and Dallas have exposed many individuals and their families to incidents of police brutality that reminds us that as a society work needs to be done to improve police and community relations.

Diverse kids holding hands

How to Talk to Our Kids about the Tragic Shootings in Louisiana, Minnesota and Dallas

Families around the country are coming together to talk about the officer-involved shootings in Louisiana, Minnesota, and the ambush of police officers in Dallas, Texas. These events come shortly after the violence in Orlando. In fact, it seems that acts of violence are in the news on a regular basis. How do we begin to explain all of this to our children when we, as adults, are having our own difficulties with what is occurring?

Addressing Biased Policing Through Science-Based Training

This is part of our ongoing series of blog posts about race, racism and law enforcement in communities of color. By Lorie Fridell, PhD (Associate Professor of Criminology, University of South Florida) Do you claim to be color-blind?  Do you believe that you do not notice when a person is Caucasian, Black, Hispanic, or Asian?  Well then, you… Read More ›

Psychologists Address Police Interactions with Boys and Men of Color

Originally posted on 2015 APA Annual Convention:
Do you know that feeling when you hear something really meaningful? For me it often involves a pit in my stomach and the chills. It is not an entirely pleasant feeling, but it is a helpful reminder that something important is happening that I don’t want to miss. That’s…

“Death by Legal Intervention” by the Numbers

This is part of our ongoing series of blog posts about race, racism and law enforcement in communities of color. By Suzanne Lea, PhD (Fellow, Interactivity Foundation, and Adjunct Professor, University of Maryland, Baltimore County) News of a citizen being killed or assaulted by police, or a citizen who dies in police custody, seems to be nearly a… Read More ›

Justice for All… Experiences of Undocumented Youth with Law Enforcement

This is part of our ongoing series of blog posts about race, racism and law enforcement in communities of color. By J. Manuel Casas, PhD (Professor Emeritus of Psychology, University of California, Santa Barbara) If I were to ask you in this post-Ferguson era which groups are affected by racial injustice in law enforcement, would undocumented immigrants be… Read More ›

Young black women protesters

Black (Women’s?) Lives Matter: Microaggression and the Erasure of Violence Against Women of Color

This is part of our ongoing series of blog posts about race, racism and law enforcement in communities of color. By LisaLyn Jacobs, JD (Vice President for Government Relations, Legal Momentum) On a recent December Saturday, I hurried from the Metro train with my 6 year-old son trailing behind. We were joining friends and colleagues at the Justice… Read More ›

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