linguistic justice intervention
Injustice: The Effect of Racial Profiling on Access to Affordable Housing
April 10, 2022
Racism, both systemic and institutionalized, is profoundly established in the culture of the United States and other parts of the world. While adopting “non-standard” or distinct from typical American English accents when enquiring about a property for rent, the property becomes unavailable for no apparent reason. This is due to property owners detecting characteristics of specific languages and linking them with unfavorable racial stereotypes.
I selected this linguistic injustice because I know people who have experienced it, even though it is prohibited. This, I believe, is unjust to those who do not speak standard American English, the majority of whom are people of color, particularly African Americans. Housing discrimination prevents individuals of color from accessing stable and suitable housing, resulting in a higher quality of life.
There have been federal laws enacted by the U.S. Housing and Development (HUD) Department, such as The Fair Housing Act in 1968, that ban discrimination against home searchers. The act’s success was that it reduced segregation to some measure. Despite this, underprivileged communities continue to face subtle racial bias and discrimination. One of the impediments is the regulatory changes implemented under Trump’s presidency, one of which is a provision that makes it more difficult for anyone to submit a complaint against housing discrimination alleging “disparate impact” (McQueen, 2022).
Systemic racism has perpetuated disparities in homeownership rates throughout the Bay Area, and Black families who can buy a home frequently face discrimination (Glover, 2021).
Discrimination in the housing market manifests itself in various ways and has a lengthy record in our nation and the Bay Area. As a result of this issue, the percentage of Black Americans who own their own home is frighteningly low. According to Redfin, only 44 percent of Black Americans would purchase a home in 2020, representing a nationwide lag. When compared to white Americans, this figure is 74%.
According to the National Association of Realtors, only 34% of Black Californians own a property. These figures are even lower in the Bay Area. According to Redfin, only 33% of Black residents of San Francisco own a home, in comparison to 61% of white San Franciscans. In San Jose, the black homeownership rate is 31 percent, while the white homeownership rate is 65 percent (Glover, 2021). And black applicants for mortgage loans are declined at three times the rate of white candidates (National Association of Realtors, 2021). Another factor restricting Black property ownership is a burdensome debt due to the wealth inequality perpetuated by systematic racism.
Minority home seekers continue to face subtle discrimination, according to HUD User (2022). Researchers discovered that, when all three stages of the paired-testing procedure are included, minorities are at a disadvantage in comparison to whites, mainly in two of the three stages: Asian, Hispanic, and Black renters were just as likely as white renters to be able to arrange meetings with rental brokers during the rental inquiry process. During these encounters, black renters learned about 11.4 percent fewer homes and were shown 4.2 percent fewer units than equally qualified white renters. Hispanic renters were informed of 12.5 percent fewer units and established 7.5 percent fewer units than white renters. Asians were shown 9.8 percent fewer available units and were informed about 9.8 percent fewer available units than whites.
Hispanic and Asian homebuyers were equally likely to secure a meeting with a sales representative during the inquiry process; however, black homebuyers were marginally less likely than white homebuyers to do so. Black purchasers learned approximately 17% fewer homes and were shown 17.7% fewer homes than similarly eligible white homebuyers. Asian purchasers were offered 18.8 percent fewer properties and knew about 15.5 percent fewer available homes than whites. Hispanics and whites did not learn about or view a remarkably contrasting units of residences (HUD User, 2022).
Minority home seekers with easily recognizable ethnicities faced higher prejudice than minorities who may be taken for white. With regard to guiding, most obtainable homes for rent and buying presented to the testers were in majority-white districts; nevertheless, the distinction in the racial mix of the communities displayed to minority home seekers and white home seekers was not substantial. Likewise, there were no statistically outstanding contrasts in the occurrence and intensity of prejudice by metropolitan region or area. Overall, having their searches constrained by discriminatory tactics of sales and rental brokers raises the expense and time minorities must spend on locating a decent house and limits the options accessible to them and their households (HUD User, 2022).
Racial profiling has been a hotly disputed topic in recent years, particularly in the aftermath of the September 11th attacks. This is when police officers select someone based on their race and ethnicity rather than their acts or behavior. Gender, age, handicap, sexual orientation, and other factors can all be considered (Ronnie, 2016).
This article illustrates how people of color are still subjected to searches for no reason other than the fact that they are black or brown. It also describes how this has been going on for a long time and hasn’t stopped. Racial profiling is a recurrent civil rights problem even in the twenty-first century. This problem has been in our country since the early 1970s.
For years, racial profiling has been neglected and ignored, and underappreciated. Many individuals believe that this is not a significant issue in today’s culture. “Racial profiling” impacts everyone somehow, not just minority populations. The author of the article above analyzes racial profiling from law enforcement and criminal perspectives.
The author describes racial profiling as any police-initiated activity that depends on an individual’s race as one of multiple determining variables, resulting in the disproportionate selection of ethnical minorities for investigative actions. He says that it is also described as any law enforcement decision made based on race, ethnicity, or national origin rather than facts, circumstances, or evidence indicating illegal action by an individual or group of individuals.
Scholars investigate how institutional sources lead to racial discrepancies in policing in the essay “Beyond Profiling: The Institutional Sources of Racial Disparities in Policing” (Charles R. Epps et al., 2016). They contend that various institutions, including the criminal justice system and the media, encourage racial biases that contribute to inequities in law enforcement procedures. The authors begin their examination by providing a brief history of racial profiling in law enforcement. Racial profiling is a form of discrimination in which people are exposed to undue scrutiny because of their race or ethnicity. According to the authors, for decades, minority groups have been subjected to unjustified police surveillance. Scholars have also found evidence of similar discriminatory practices in recent officer batches. These findings suggest that racial profiling exists, despite legislators’ assurances that it has been removed.
The authors of the study investigate the function of police administrative data systems in defining police practices, emphasizing the impact of computerized records management systems (RMS) on policing inequities. They contend that police officer can utilize RMS to prejudice their decision-making by providing fast access to information about individuals’ prior interactions with the police. However, racially-biased RMS use, like racial profiling, is challenging to detect since it is implicit. The paper employs data from New York City’s RMS to demonstrate the link between RMS use and racial disparities in the police.
It also provides qualitative evidence that confirms how officers can use such tools to exhibit bias in decision-making. In conclusion, the findings imply that computational approaches can open up a substantial new window into understanding racial disparities in the police. To address the issue, most states have implemented legislation prohibiting police profiling. According to studies, these legal improvements have not resulted in significant changes in police behavior or reduced racial inequities in policing.
According to the piece, “How Dark Is It? Big City, Bright Lights, and Racial Profiling “Colorism is the practice of prejudice in which a person’s skin color determines their standing (William & Shawn, 2016). This type of discrimination is apparent in the topic of racial profiling, or looking at someone’s skin tone and presuming they are affluent or poor.
I agree with William and Shawn that racial profiling has been used to determine who was free or enslaved since the early 1800s. The “one-drop rule” was utilized to establish if someone was black or white. They were considered black and treated as if they had even one drop of black blood in them. White people are now identified by phrases like “bright lights, large city.” According to William and Shawn, this is an example of racial profiling in the present day.
I believe that racial profiling is used even more today than in the 1800s when enslaved people were liberated and became citizens of the United States. It may not be as visible or brutal as it formerly was, but I believe it is still there in our culture today. In the Rodney King case, four white police officers were acquitted of assaulting a black man because a jury couldn’t agree on whether or not they used excessive force. Following this, a series of riots erupted in Los Angeles and other regions of California, lasting several days.
Following the end of the riots, many African American individuals were allegedly treated worse by police officers than any other group. In the case of Amadou Diallo, four white police officers were acquitted of shooting an unarmed black man over 40 times after mistaking him for a rape suspect in New York City. Following this occurrence, many individuals began to discuss racial profiling of African Americans and how law officials treated them.
Sounman Hong (2017) revisits the critical topic of racial profiling in police stops in “Black in Blue: Racial Profiling and Representative Bureaucracy in Policing Revisited.” It examines if the chance of African Americans getting pulled over is related to their representation in the police department using representative bureaucracy literature. According to the report, black officers are less likely to pull over black drivers than white officers. However, this influence is moderated by the police department’s hiring and promotion processes. Police departments that hire and promote minority officers more frequently have fewer black motorists stopped by white and black police. The findings sparked a debate about how hiring practices can cause or worsen gaps in policing outcomes between black and white communities.
The study looked into how the number of black police officers in a police department affects the occurrence of racial profiling by cops in this study. The researchers expected that as the ratio of black police officers in a department increased, so would the amount of racial profiling. The research topic was if there is a significant relation between the proportion of black officers in a police department and racial profiling by that department.
The researcher obtained information on the demography of local areas from the 2000 census, which included data on race, gender, and ethnicity. They also used MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) data for their investigation. They accounted for demographics such as age and gender to ensure that other factors did not skew their results. In their analysis, the researchers also adjusted for population size, poverty levels, violent crime rates, arrest rates, and motor vehicle fatalities.
The study included 1,201 law enforcement agencies from around the United States, including cities and counties with populations of more than 2,500 people. The author discovered that an increase in black policemen is significantly connected with a drop in “African American” traffic offenses.
“Trayvon Martin: Racial Profiling, Black Male Stigma, and Social Work Practice” (Martell Lee Teasley et al., 2018) examine the social concerns that occurred after Trayvon Martin’s shooting death. The authors explain how racial profiling and the stigma of being a young black guy contributed to his untimely death and the larger social, political, legal, and cultural discourse about race in America. The author focuses on the role of social work practice in addressing racial profiling as a public health issue among young minority males in particular. It discusses how black men were stereotyped. Trayvon Martin was shot and murdered by George Zimmerman in this case. In Sanford, Florida, he was 17 years old and walking home from a convenience shop. The article also discusses social work practice, which assists people who need assistance with challenges in their lives, such as job loss or a lack of affordable housing.
Charles R. Epp, Steven Maynard-Moody, Donald Haider-Markel. (2016). Beyond Profiling: The Institutional Sources of Racial Disparities in Policing. Retrieved from https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/puar.12702
Glover J. (2022). Black California couple lowballed by $500K in-home appraisal, believe race was a factor. Retrieved from https://abc7news.com/black-homeowner-problems-sf-bay-area-housing-discrimination-minority-homeownership-anti-black-policy/10331076/
HUD User (2022). Subtle Forms of Discrimination Still Exist for Minority Homeseekers. Retrieved from https://www.huduser.gov/portal/pdredge/pdr_edge_research_062813.html
Martell Lee Teasley, Jerome H Schiele, Charles Adams, Northern S Okinawa. (2018). Trayvon Martin: Racial Profiling, Black Male Stigma, and Social Work Practice. Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/sw/article-abstract/63/1/37/4607902?redirectedFrom=fulltext
McQueen, M. P. (2022). Housing discrimination: What is it, and what can you do about it? Retrieved from https://www.investopedia.com/housing-discrimination-what-can-you-do-5074478
National Association of Realtors (2021). NAR Finds Black Home Buyers More Than Twice as Likely to Have Student Loan Debt, Be Rejected for Mortgage Loans Than White Home Buyers. Retrieved from https://www.nar.realtor/newsroom/nar-finds-black-home-buyers-more-than-twice-as-likely-to-have-student-loan-debt-be-rejected-for
Ronnie A. Dunn. (216). Racial Profiling: A Persistent Civil Rights Challenge Even in the Twenty-First Century. Retrieved from https://scholarlycommons.law.case.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=4662&context=caselrev
Sounman Hong (2017). Black in Blue: Racial Profiling and Representative Bureaucracy in Policing Revisited. Journal of Public Administration Research & Theory. Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/jpart/article/27/4/547/3930869
William C. Horrace, Shawn M. Rohlin. (2016). How Dark Is Dark? Bright Lights, Big City, Racial Profiling. Retrieved from https://direct.mit.edu/rest/article-abstract/98/2/226/58331/How-Dark-Is-Dark-Bright-Lights-Big-City-Racial?redirectedFrom=fulltext