Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Juries Not As Racially Diverse As The Communities From Which They Are Drawn, Study Finds

Date:
December 7, 2008
Source:
Wiley-Blackwell
Summary:
Results reveal that there is a wide range of factors that conspire to prevent juries from being as racially diverse as the communities they represent.

A new review of the literature in the journal Social Issues and Policy Review examines obstacles that prevent diversity on juries and the implications this has on jury performance. Results reveal that there are a wide range of factors that conspire to prevent juries from being as racially diverse as the communities they represent.

Related Articles


Samuel R. Sommers, Ph.D., of the Department of Psychology at Tufts University shows how racial bias in the legal system is not an outdated or obsolete concern, and race still influences many processes.

In his article, Sommers notes how a county in the U.S. has a sizeable number of African-American citizens. Across various trials, not a single jury had enough black jurors to indicate a jury composition representative of the more general racial demographics. The facts describe Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, just prior to Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Various reasons exist why juries are often less diverse than the surrounding communities. Members of racial minority groups are often relatively underrepresented when it comes to driver’s licenses and voter registration, both of which are lists often used to select people for jury duty.

Even when a diverse group of people shows up for jury duty, lawyers often consider race in deciding whom to challenge during jury selection. Prosecutors are often inclined to remove minority jurors from the panel because of expectations that such individuals are less likely to vote guilty in a case, even though the U.S. Supreme Court prohibits them from excluding jurors based on race.

A legal system with non-diverse juries is problematic. “There are multiple consequences of having juries that are not diverse,” Sommers concludes. “Community members begin to lose confidence in the fairness and legitimacy of the legal system, as it is difficult to have faith in a legal system when you never see anyone who looks like you making the important decisions. Furthermore, in some instances we actually see more thorough decision-making processes on diverse juries.”


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Samuel R. Sommers. Determinants and Consequences of Jury Racial Diversity: Empirical Findings, Implications, and Directions for Future Research. Social Issues and Policy Review, 2008; 2 (1): 65 DOI: 10.1111/j.1751-2409.2008.00011.x

Cite This Page:

Wiley-Blackwell. "Juries Not As Racially Diverse As The Communities From Which They Are Drawn, Study Finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081203184641.htm>.
Wiley-Blackwell. (2008, December 7). Juries Not As Racially Diverse As The Communities From Which They Are Drawn, Study Finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081203184641.htm
Wiley-Blackwell. "Juries Not As Racially Diverse As The Communities From Which They Are Drawn, Study Finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081203184641.htm (accessed April 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Science & Society News

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Models in Masks Highlight Indonesian Environmental Devastation

Models in Masks Highlight Indonesian Environmental Devastation

AFP (Mar. 31, 2015) — Wearing gas masks and designer dresses, models condemn the fashion industry&apos;s role in causing environmental devastation. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Future Of Japanese Whaling: Heritage Vs. Conservation

The Future Of Japanese Whaling: Heritage Vs. Conservation

Newsy (Mar. 30, 2015) — In 2014, the International Court of Justice ruled Japan could no longer engage in whaling in the Antarctic, but Japan has plans to return this year. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Soda, Salt and Sugar: The Next Generation of Taxes

Washington Post (Mar. 30, 2015) — Denisa Livingston, a health advocate for the Dinι Community Advocacy Alliance, and the Post&apos;s Abby Phillip discuss efforts around the country to make unhealthy food choices hurt your wallet as much as your waistline. Video provided by Washington Post
Powered by NewsLook.com
UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

UnitedHealth Buys Catamaran

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 30, 2015) — The $12.8 billion merger will combine the U.S.&apos; third and fourth largest pharmacy benefit managers. Analysts say smaller PBMs could also merge. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins