County to Review Racial Bias in Law Enforcement Agencies

By City News Service

The Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to take a look at whether Los Angeles County’s law enforcement agencies can do more to mitigate implicit racial bias.

Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas recommended the review of anti-bias programs and focused on training for sheriff’s cadets. However, he and the board also requested information from the Probation Department, District Attorney’s Office, Public Defender and Alternate Public Defender, Superior Court and Fire Department.

“This is an unprecedented moment in the history of our nation,” Ridley- Thomas said. He later added, “There is no denying that there is a crisis of confidence” in law enforcement.

In his motion, Ridley-Thomas pointed out that training criteria and certification for law enforcement professionals in California prohibit racial profiling, but said less overt bias can be equally damaging.

One advocate was more direct.

“We must challenge the insidious idea that `criminals’ and `dangerous’ are synonymous with black people and people of color,” said Alex Johnson of the Children’s Defense Fund-California.

A spokewoman for the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California said even unconscious bias can lead to tragic outcomes.

“We know that racial disparity in everyday stops also means racial disparity in the number of incidents that escalate from the stop to a shooting or other use of force,” the ACLU’s Catherine Wagner told the board.

The supervisors asked departments to report back in 45 days on training related to implicit bias. A second report on national best practices is expected in three months.

Print This Post Print This Post

August 17, 2016  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.


One Response to “County to Review Racial Bias in Law Enforcement Agencies”

  1. Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas | August 2016 on August 18th, 2016 11:48 am

    […] County to Review Racial Bias in Law Enforcement Agencies (EGP News) […]

Comments are intended to further discussion on the article topic. EGPNews reserves the right to not publish, edit or remove comments that contain vulgarities, foul language, personal attacks, racists, sexist, homophobic or other offensive terminology or that contain solicitations, spam, or that threaten harm of any sort. EGPNews will not approve comments that call for or applaud the death, injury or illness of any person, regardless of their public status. Questions regarding this policy should be e-mailed to

 characters available

Copyright © 2018 Eastern Group Publications/EGPNews, Inc. ·