Cynthia D. Mares
Hispanic National Bar Association
As attorneys, Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) lawyers have a responsibility to ensure that our legal system is just, that police officers who use undue force are held accountable, and that broken policies such as lack of training and lack of accountability are fixed before any more tragedies happen. Moreover, fundamental civil and human rights must be protected.
Recent events, like those in Ferguson, demonstrate that we as a country have not made much progress since the Rodney King tragedy many years ago. Every day, not only African Americans, but also Latinos, are racially profiled by police. According to 2010 Bureau of Justice statistics, while crime rates were equal, African-American men were six times as likely, and Latinos three times as likely, to be imprisoned than their white counterparts.
In 2007, Pew Hispanic reported that, “Latinos accounted for 40 …