Criminal Justice Paper on Discrimination and Disparity of incarceration U.S

Discrimination and Disparity of incarceration U.S

Statistics show that racial minorities, mainly the black and Hispanic males, face unreasonably high threat of imprisonment in the United States. This is the mostly serious subject facing existing criminal justice policymakers. This conclusion is made by considering the negative influences that incarceration can have on persons, their communities, and the combination of minorities into the state’s greater social, economic, and political scene. Concerns about the alterations of the ethnic community is attached to stereotypes that link the race to drug use and drug-related crimes and violence, that may point to insensible racism among sentencing administrators. The US Supreme Court thought that the judgement to arraign may not be intentionally based upon an indefensible standard such as race, religion, or other arbitraries.

Cultural disproportionality in incarceration is the race and justice concern that stresses the most consideration from researchers and legislators who reflects on several of factors. Principles considered when making these decision include:


Racial disparity in the criminal justice structure occurs when the quantity of a racial/ethnic community within the controller of the system is bigger than the percentage of other communities in the general society. The main reasons for such disparity are diverse and can comprise of opposing intensities of criminal action, law execution emphasis on certain communities, judicial policies, and verdicts by criminal justice experts who exercise comprehensive discretion in the justice procedure at one or more phases in the system. Illegitimate racial disparity in the criminal justice system comes from the different treatment of equally placed people grounded on race. In some cases this could include evident racial prejudice, while in others it might replicate the impact of aspects that are only incidentally connected to race.

Discrimination arises on most phases of the criminal justice system. Some of discriminations arise when dealing with race and person sexuality compared to other races. The most affected races are the Black Americans and the Hispanic who are mostly detained for offences that the white community are not detained or the court ruling for the same offence is different. The crimes that mostly receive the media attention are from politicians, criminal justice officials and street crimes such as murder, robbery, and rape. These racial minorities experience difficulties in court because of their race and because they are poor compared to the whites people. Discrimination can be divided into:-

  • Systematic discrimination where by different facilities or treatment are due to race; schools funding facilities are less that what the superior communities have and the population is also less.
  • Institutionalized discrimination which is also a persistence way of discrimination in social institutions that is not essentially familiar by everyone as discrimination
  • Contextual discrimination which describes a circumstances in which race minorities are treated more severely at some points and in some places in the criminal justice system but no differently than whites at other points and in other places.
  • Individual discrimination which is destructive action focused intentionally, on a one-to-one basis, by a member of a dominant group against a member of a minority group.

Racial disparity of incarceration has a negative effect on the affected community. Some of these effects are

  • The stigma factor which undermines human and social capital where by families are forced to feel shameful, and it also awakens the mistrust of neighbors when delinquents return home. It also creates a negative reputation that harms local businesses.
  • The financial cost of incarceration strains the families by the loss of an employee during imprisonment and by the liability of supporting ex-prisoners. These families have difficulties buildup human assets, which damages their capability to produce informal communal control.
  • Community populations living in high-incarceration areas struggle with the certainty of living in a disgraceful location. This can lead to personality problems, mainly for children, in the systems of weakened self-confidence and dignity
  • Damage to community relationships where by it is unavoidable consequence when a community undergoes mass incarceration. The increasing impact of this occurrence is a reduction of social provisions among communal residents.

There are four important phases to counter or to reduce racial disparity in the criminal justice system which are;-

  • Recognize the aggregate nature of racial disparities by identifying the problems which builds at different stage of the criminal justice scale from apprehension through liberation, rather than the outcome of the activities at any particular stage.
  • Encourage communication across all decision makers of the system in order to fight unjustified disparity. Policies are essential to block the problem at individual stage of the criminal justice system, and to do so in a synchronized way.
  • The decision makers need to know that what works at one judgement point may not work at others. Different decision point and section of the system needs unique approaches depending on the degree of disparity and the precise populations affected by the activities of that module.
  • Work toward systemic change where by it is impossible to work without knowledgeable criminal justice leaders who are willing and able to obligate their personal and agency resources to determining and addressing racial disparity at every stage of the system.




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Rehavi, M. M., & Starr, S. B. (2014). Racial disparity in federal criminal sentences. Journal of Political Economy122(6), 1320-1354.

Reisner, S. L., Bailey, Z., & Sevelius, J. (2014). Racial/ethnic disparities in history of incarceration, experiences of victimization, and associated health indicators among transgender women in the US. Women & health54(8), 750-767.