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(p. 1) The Legacy of Racism for Children’s Interactions with the Law: Exploring Themes with Psychological Science 

(p. 1) The Legacy of Racism for Children’s Interactions with the Law: Exploring Themes with Psychological Science
Chapter:
(p. 1) The Legacy of Racism for Children’s Interactions with the Law: Exploring Themes with Psychological Science
Author(s):

Margaret C. Stevenson

, Bette L. Bottoms

, and Kelly C. Burke

DOI:
10.1093/med-psych/9780190056742.003.0001
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date: 19 January 2021

Psychological research and theory are needed to understand how laws and public policies contribute to racial disparities affecting children involved in the legal system. This chapter profiles an actual case to illustrate the complex interplay of myriad problems faced by children of color, such as early poverty, child abuse, failures in public education, and racism institutionalized in the policies and laws meant to protect children. The chapter also previews the issues presented in this book, which address the intersection of race and ethnicity involved in child victimization (sex trafficking, corporal punishment, disclosure of abuse); dependency court decisions and adoptions; juvenile and criminal justice systems (parental incarceration, the school-to-prison pipeline, police–youth interactions, perceptions of victims and offenders); and immigration law and policy. Understanding the intersecting implications of psychology, public policy, and law is necessary to end the challenges facing racial minority youth in America today, ensuring equitable treatment for children of color.

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