Essay about Disparity and Discrimination

685 Words Apr 4th, 2007 3 Pages
Disparity and Discrimination
Penny Turberville
CJA 420/Cultural Diversity in Criminal Justice
John France
March 26, 2007

Disparity and Discrimination Disparity can be defined as an inequality while discrimination can be defined as a prejudice. I will set forward to define these terms as they relate to the criminal justice system and how the terms relate to one another. I will also provide examples of each. In criminal justice disparity means that there is a difference, but that that difference does not automatically mean discrimination (Walker 16). On the other hand in criminal justice the term discrimination means to treat people differently because of them being a certain race or religion without regarding the individual's
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Discrimination can also be against ones gender, sexual orientation, height, weight and many other factors. An example of disparity that might have a reason is a law or rule that requires police officers to be a certain weight that is in proportion to their height. While this has a good reason in mind, it could present a disparity towards people with weight problems. We want our officers to be in good shape and for them not to have a heart attack when they have to pursue a suspect on foot or are involved in a physical altercation. Discrimination can sometimes present itself in subtle ways that are more difficult to prove or acknowledge. A police department may balk at hiring women. If the department is careful not to engage in sexual harassment, they can still make the precinct a very uncomfortable place for a woman to work. They can choose to give her the undesirable assignments and blame it on the fact that she is new and inexperienced. They can also be careful to recruit only men by appearing in places where men are the majority of the audience. I think when we think about disparity in the criminal justice system we think about things that wouldn't affect us. We think that if people who are employed are the people who get bond, then that is fine, because we are employed. We think that women who are in abusive relationships choose to be in these relationships. While there is no easy quick fix answer for either

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