All levels and branches of government must strive to eliminate racism in the criminal justice system through improved law enforcement training and discipline, condemnation of racial and ethnic profiling, and reform or abolition of laws that have a disproportionate impact on minorities. One approach that NACDL supports is the Justice Integrity Act, legislation that would establish diverse working groups in 10 federal jurisdictions to study prosecutorial practices and make recommendations for reducing racial disparities.
S. 495/H.R. 1412, The Justice Integrity Act
The Justice Integrity Act would address racial and ethnic disparities in the federal justice system by mandating the creation of 10 pilot programs to evaluate racial and ethnic fairness in the practices of U.S. Attorney’s Offices. The time has come for the government to acknowledge, once and for all, the role of racial disparity in the U.S. criminal justice system. The legislation seeks to address the gross imbalance in incarceration rates, disparate application of capital punishment, and continued reliance upon racial and ethnic profiling. Abundant evidence that the juvenile justice system deals more harshly with minorities, and emergent evidence that diversion programs are more generally available to more affluent and less diverse populations, cannot be ignored.