Poverty, Race, and Community Policing in Buffalo
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The region’s inequality has dramatic effects in every aspect of life, and the criminal justice system is no exception. As PPG documented in its 2013 report, Alarming Disparities, African-Americans account for 14% of Erie County’s population but 43% of arrests and 65% of prison sentences, and Hispanics represent 4.7% of the population but 7% of arrests and 9% of prison sentences. For some charges, the disparities are especially striking; for example, African-Americans account for 69% of misdemeanor marijuana possession arrests, although African-Americans use marijuana at roughly the same (or slightly lower) rates as whites.
Buffalo; Equality/Civil Rights; Criminal Justice; Policing; General; Policy Brief; PPG; Data/Demographics/History