Center for American Progress

The Criminal Justice System’s Disproportionate Impact on People of Color
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The Criminal Justice System’s Disproportionate Impact on People of Color

People of color, particularly African Americans and Latinos, are unfairly targeted by the police and face harsher prison sentences than their white counterparts.

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idea_bulbThe nation’s criminal justice system is broken. People of color, particularly African Americans and Latinos, are unfairly targeted by the police and face harsher prison sentences than their white counterparts. Given the nation’s coming demographic shift, in which there will be no clear racial or ethnic majority by 2044, the United States cannot afford for these trends to continue. Not only could the money spent on mass incarceration—$80 billion in 2010—be put to better use, but the consequences for people who become entangled in the criminal justice system are also lifelong, leading to barriers to employment and housing, among many other things.

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