One more factor contributing to disproportionate minority contact is the differential opportunities or privileges for prevention and treatment that are available to some youth and not to others.
For many years, notes Alex Piquero, youth of color have been overrepresented at every stage of the U. Advocating for national and statewide change is a crucial step in our movement toward disproportionate minority contact reduction.
Finally, Piquero emphasizes that one critical research area involves updating justice system data systems and repositories, which have failed to track changes in U. As with racial disparities in a wide variety of social indicators, the causes of these disparities are not immediately apparent.
Asking how much minority overrepresentation is due to differences in offending and how much to differences in processing no longer seems a helpful way to frame the discussion.
At the highest level, the development of legislation mandating efforts to reduce disproportionate minority contact are needed. Adjudicating between these options, says Piquero, is difficult and may even be impossible.
For instance, differential selection might look like African-American youth being stopped by the police more frequently than European-American youth despite having the same criminal record, being in the same location and engaging in the same behavior.
See Section 1. Methods for intervening at the local level are described within the Disproportionate Minority Contact Technical Assistance Manual 4th Edition.
At the local level, we as citizens can encourage suspension reduction programsas suspension is often the first step in the school-to-prison pipeline that disproportionately affects youth of color.