Black-White Divide Over Policing Is Deep, Survey Says

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The fractured trust between minority communities and the law enforcement agencies that serve them is showing little evidence of healing, says a new national survey that found deep divides in how black and white America regard local police, reports USA Today. Mirroring almost daily demonstrations playing out on the nation’s streets, 14 percent of blacks said they have a lot of confidence in local police, compared to 42 percent of whites, says a report by the Pew Research Center released yesterday.

The chasm appears even more stark in the assessment of law enforcement’s use of force, equal treatment of racial groups, accountability for misconduct, and local crime control. In all but one of those categories — crime control— about one-third of blacks said police did an excellent or good job, compared with at least 70 percent of whites. Meanwhile, 78 percent of whites said police did an excellent or good job protecting communities from crime, compared to 48 percent of blacks. The survey, conducted between Aug. 16 and Sept. 12, involved 4,538 adults. It was finished before recent deadly encounters between police and black men in Tulsa and Charlotte, which prompted several days and nights of demonstrations.


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