Policing immigrants: Fear of deportations and perceptions of law enforcement and criminal justice

David Becerra, M. Alex Wagaman, David Androff, Jill Messing, Jason Castillo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Summary: This study examined the relationship between the fear of deportation and perceptions of law enforcement, the criminal justice system, and the willingness to report crimes among Latinos in the US. Understanding the relationship between increased immigration enforcement and fear of deportation may promote public safety by improving the relationship between the police and Latino communities. Findings: Multivariate ordinal logistic regression analyses of the data found that participants who had a greater fear of deportation reported: (1) less confidence that police would not use excessive force (p <.01); (2) less confidence that police would treat Latinos fairly (p <.05); (3) a lower likelihood of reporting crimes (p <.05); and (4) less confidence that the courts would treat Latinos fairly (p <.01). Applications: Social work practitioners can help address this issue and improve the relationship between law enforcement, the criminal justice system, and the Latino community by: delivering cultural competence training for police and criminal justice personnel; educating Latinos about how to protect their rights when interacting with police and the criminal justice system; and by advocating for immigration reform that can help improve public safety and reduce fear in Latino communities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)715-731
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Social Work
Volume17
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2017

Keywords

  • criminal justice
  • discrimination
  • ethnic minorities
  • Fear of Deportation
  • immigrants
  • Latinos
  • social justice
  • Social work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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