In public opinion surveys, Americans often display a split personality on criminal justice issues. They can support harsh punishments but also doubt that the prison system is effective at rehabilitating people. Latinos also display varied opinions, including paradoxes specific to their experiences with the justice system. They feel aggrieved about perceived mistreatment but also seek protection from the criminal justice system. Hispanics hold police responsible for controlling crime in their neighborhoods but at the same time regard law enforcement with a great degree of suspicion. Defying standard ideological and partisan categories, Latinos have strongly favored both gun control and, until recently, the death penalty. Latinos' views tend to fall somewhere in between blacks and whites, who are more clearly polarized (see footnote). Finally, Latino attitudes on criminal justice matters are uniquely influenced by immigration. Perceptions sometimes differ between the native born and...more.
With the current policy attention to immigration reform, the enforcement of immigration measures raises concerns for many Latinos. Overall, they agree that local police forces should not be involved i...more.
A 2013 study surveyed Californians who self-reported being a victim of crime in the past five years. These victims overwhelmingly disapproved of the state’s investing more money in jails and prison ...more.
Latinos exhibit strong feelings about some longstanding controversies. They strongly support existing gun control measures such as criminal background checks and a national gun database, and they are ...more.
Several studies have linked opinion of the police to residents’ perceptions of levels of disorder and crime in their neighborhood. The U.S. Department of Justice published a report in 2003 findi...more.
A 2013 study looked at perceptions of law enforcement authorities in light of the greater involvement of police in immigration enforcement, arguing that there is a reduction in public safety as a...more.
Latino Voices: The Impacts of Crime and Criminal Justice Policies on Latinos. June 2014 report by Californians for Safety and Justice summarizes much of the polling data on this website, as w...more.