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Is Cultural Diversity a Good Idea for Law Enforcement?

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Many of the nation's cities are divided into radically different cultures. Every large American city has areas with dense populations of different races, cultures, and religions. To adequately and efficiently police these areas, criminal justice must not excuse behaviors because of these differences, but recognize the importance of understanding the peoples that it serves. The criminal justice system is often called upon to address issues within the greater societal debate.

Explain your views on why it is important to have a department that reflects the population at large. For example, is it desirable to staff an area heavily populated with Chinese persons with officers of Chinese heritage? Will a Caucasian section of town accept only Caucasian officers? What is the difference in economic bases of various areas of a city? Is it necessary to provide only well-educated officers to the citizens of well-educated areas? Cities are divided into radically different cultures. Every large American city has areas with dense populations of different races, cultures, and religions. To adequately and efficiently police these areas, criminal justice must not excuse behaviors because of these differences, but recognize the importance of understanding the peoples that it serves. The criminal justice system is often called upon to address issues within the greater societal debate.

Explain your views on why it is important to have a department that reflects the population at large. For example, is it desirable to staff an area heavily populated with Chinese persons with officers of Chinese heritage? Will a Caucasian section of town accept only Caucasian officers? What is the difference in economic bases of various areas of a city? Is it necessary to provide only well-educated officers to the citizens of well-educated areas?

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Hi,

Interesting discussion question! Let's take a closer look.

RESPONSE:

1. Explain your views on why it is important to have a department that reflects the population at large. For example, is it desirable to staff an area heavily populated with Chinese persons with officers of Chinese heritage? Will a Caucasian section of town accept only Caucasian officers? What is the difference in economic bases of various areas of a city? Is it necessary to provide only well-educated officers to the citizens of well-educated areas?

Today, almost one in three Americans is a racial or ethnic minority. Nearly one out of every five school-aged children in the United States speaks a language other than English at home. By 2010, nearly half of the total workforce of the United States will be comprised of women and people of color (http://www.leeforum.com/articledetail.php?recordID=162).

Therefore, it is important to have a department that also reflects the population at large, meaning that it is made up of a cultural diverse population. However, this does not mean that it is about matching law enforcement officers on the same 'same' dimensions as those they serve, such as a Chinese law officers would ONLY serve Chinese people, or ...

Solution Summary

In reference to the scenario, cultural diversity is explored for in relation to law enforcement. It is explains why it is important to have a department that reflects the population at large e.g. it is desirable to staff an area heavily populated with Chinese persons with officers of Chinese heritage, and so on.

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