The Effects of Race on Relationships with the Police: A Survey of African American and Latino Youths in Chicago

By Lurigio, Arthur J.; Greenleaf, Richard G. et al. | Western Criminology Review, June 2009 | Go to article overview

The Effects of Race on Relationships with the Police: A Survey of African American and Latino Youths in Chicago


Lurigio, Arthur J., Greenleaf, Richard G., Flexon, Jamie L., Western Criminology Review


Abstract: Race is one of the most powerful variables explaining public attitudes toward the police. The majority of studies on race and perceptions of the police have explored differences between African Americans and Whites. The emphasis of previous research on black-white comparisons has left unanswered many questions about minority group differences in attitudes toward the police, especially differences between Latinos and African Americans. The present study explored whether the police-related views of African American and Latino students differ. We compared African American and Latino youths on their attitudes, feelings, and behavioral intentions toward the police. Our independent measures included prosocial values, commitment to school, and contact with the police. We found several similarities between Latino and African American students on the dependent measures. We discuss the implications of our findings for police practices.

Keywords: Police Relations; Youths; Minorities and Police; Trust in Police; Vicarious Experiences

Race is one of the most powerful variables explaining public attitudes toward the police (Skogan 2006). The majority of studies on race and perceptions of the police have explored differences between African Americans and Whites, concluding generally that African Americans are less satisfied with the police than are Whites (Browning, Cullen, Cao, Kopache, and Stevenson 1994; Ho and McKean 2004). The emphasis of previous research on black-white comparisons has left unanswered many questions about differences in minority group attitudes toward the police, especially differences between Latinos and African Americans (Martinez 2007). For example, do Latinos and African Americans have similar views of the police? Do minority groups have different perceptions about whether the police care about their neighborhoods? Are Latino and African American youths similarly stopped and treated disrespectfully by the police? In the current study, we pose these and other questions to a sample of minority students in Chicago's Public School System.

Recent population estimates show that Latinos are now the largest and fastest-growing minority group in the United States (Schaefer 2006). The Latino population in Chicago has been soaring since 2000 (Little 2007). Although considered a heterogeneous population, most Chicago Latinos have their roots in either Mexico or Puerto Rico. According to Schaefer (2006), Latinos differ from one another in their immigration experiences and cultural identities. Although they are brought together by a common language and shared media outlets (e.g., cable TV stations), most Latinos eschew panethnicity or solidarity among ethnic subgroups, preferring instead to be characterized as Mexican American, Cuban, or Puerto Rican. However, the members of these different Latino ethnic groups appear to have quite similar views about the police (Skogan and Steiner 2004).

Evidence suggests that African Americans and Latinos harbor different attitudes and perceptions regarding the police. For example, Skogan and Hartnett (1997) found that awareness of, participation in, and support for Chicago's community policing initiative, Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy (CAPS), were considerably lower among Latinos, as a whole, than among African Americans. Non-English-speaking Latinos in Chicago had particularly unfavorable views of the police and rarely communicated with the police. Skogan and Steiner (2004) also found that although Spanish-speaking residents live in the city's most troublesome communities with high rates of crime and disorder, they are the least likely group to initiate contact with the police. Walker, Spohn, and DeLone (2000) suggested that non-English-speaking Latinos are reluctant to communicate with the police because of the language barrier. Others fear that calling the police will trigger investigations of the immigration status of community residents.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Effects of Race on Relationships with the Police: A Survey of African American and Latino Youths in Chicago
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.