Pub. date: 2002 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412950664 | Print ISBN: 9780761922582 | Online ISBN: 9781412950664| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Race and Policing
Helen Taylor Greene
The relationship between race and policing is a controversial issue in the study of criminal justice. Although there is disagreement about defining race , the term often is used to refer to one's ethnicity. In the United States, race is used to describe both physical characteristics and culture. In discussions of race and policing, race usually refers to African Americans (blacks). In other countries, such as Britain, race also can refer to various immigrants of color, including Pakistanis, Jamaicans, and Africans, who meet with considerable animosity from both British citizens and police. Policing refers to the agencies and processes responsible for maintaining law and order in a society. In the United States, policing is primarily a function of local governments, although there also are federal, state, and private police agencies. Race and policing sensitizes us to several issues, including the disproportionate number of African Americans and other minorities who are ...