“Half of black respondents, including 6 in 10 black men, said they personally had been treated unfairly by police because of their race, compared to 3 percent of whites,” the poll read. “More than two-thirds of blacks — 71 percent —thought police are treated too leniently by the criminal justice system when they hurt or kill people.”
Over the past year, the United States has dealt with a number of high profile police killings of African-American men, spurring a national debate around the issue of excessive police force and racial profiling across the country.
Meanwhile, a third of white Americans believe US police are getting away with violent actions, and 46 percent said the US criminal justice system treats police officers fairly, the poll found.
The poll also revealed that some 74 percent of white Americans thought race “had nothing to do with” how police used deadly force, while 71 percent of blacks believed that US police are more likely to use deadly force against African-Americans in their community.
Additionally, 72 percent of whites said they “always or often trust police” to help their communities, compared to 66 percent of African-Americans who disagreed and “only sometimes, rarely or never trust the police to do what is right.”
US President Barack Obama has recently launched several policy initiatives in the wake of renewed calls to counter racial bias in the country. The initiatives include investing in police body-worn cameras for law enforcement agencies and a plan for addressing segregation in US neighborhoods.