Gender Invisible: "Many Police Stops in New York Unjustified, Study Says"

Many Police Stops in New York Unjustified, Study Says –

This NYT article on the study, conducted for a test case being  brought by the US Center for Constitutional Rights is interesting and informative.  I suspect that the study is as well, and this issue is critically important.  But with my gender analysis hat on, let me tell you this: Not once in this article is gender mentioned.  So you get really interesting findings:

Another of the Fagan study’s main areas of focus was where stops were concentrated.

It found that the highest proportion of stops occur within police precincts that cover areas with large numbers of black and Hispanic residents. A chart in the study shows that in the quartile of the city with the highest concentrations of black residents, the police stopped people at a rate two to three times as much per criminal complaint than in the quartile of the precincts with the lowest percentage of black residents.

But, isn’t something missing? Is it just intended to be obvious that we’re talking about men?

I’m certainly not alone in thinking that the intersection of race and gender holds a good deal of explanatory power, and I think that it’s equally interesting and important to be asking about gender in these cases.   I don’t know what we’d see with the gender data.  Maybe we’d learn something about gaps in the experiences of black men and women in NYC.  Or, maybe the data would show something surprising – how many people, on reading the article, actually picture the police stopping women at all?  Likely to capture the depth of raced and gendered discrimination in policing you have to study a variety of police activities – not just stops, but for instance, conversations with victims of crime, family members of those arrested detained, etc.

Here’s a link to the CCR and the case they are bringing – it includes a link to the study itself. If you check it out, let us know through the comments what’s in there. I cannot spend anymore time on the internet today!

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