Civil and Human Rights Coalition Applauds Introduction of the End Racial Profiling Act
WASHINGTON––Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued the following statement on today’s introduction of the End Racial Profiling Act (ERPA) by Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Congressman John Conyers (D-Mich.):
“The Leadership Conference thanks Senator Cardin and Representative Conyers for re-introducing ERPA today and taking this vital step toward ending racial profiling in America.
Racial profiling robs people of their dignity, undermines the integrity of our criminal justice system, and instills fear and distrust among members of targeted communities.
Strong evidence suggests that racial profiling is ineffective and counter-productive as a law enforcement tool and makes us all less safe by distracting law enforcement from the pursuit of individuals who pose serious threats to security. Despite this, its use has actually expanded after the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the context of counterterrorism; fighting drug trafficking and other ‘street-level’ crimes; and in efforts to enforce immigration laws.
This is true for Muslims, Sikhs, Arab Americans, and South Asians targeted by law enforcement for terrorist activities; for Latinos in places that mimic provisions of Arizona’s S.B. 1070 anti-immigration law; and for African Americans subject to street-level profiling while walking or driving.
When the ‘March 2 Justice’ marchers arrived in Washington yesterday from its 250-mile journey from New York, they called on Congress to pass ERPA among their top priorities. We join the marchers in demanding an end to this harmful and discriminatory practice and urge Congress to act now to bring an end to racial profiling by passing ERPA.”
Wade Henderson is president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition charged by its diverse membership to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its 200-plus member organizations, visit www.civilrights.org.