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The Threat of Appearing Racist: Stereotype Threat and Support for Coercion Among Australian Police Officers

journal contribution
posted on 2024-04-17, 05:40 authored by M Mccarthy, R Trinkner, P Atiba Goff
Recent research in the United States has argued that the threat of confirming the “racist cop” stereotype may paradoxically increase the propensity for coercive policing by depressing officers’ self-legitimacy. The current study aimed to assess the influence of the threat of the “racist cop” stereotype on officers’ self-legitimacy and their attitudes toward force in an Australian policing jurisdiction. An online survey was completed by 306 frontline officers in Queensland, Australia. Structural equation modeling was used to assess the influence of stereotype threat on officers’ attitudes toward force, and the extent to which this is mediated by perceptions of self-legitimacy. The findings confirmed previous findings, with increased officer perceptions of stereotype threat associated with increased support for coercive policing, mediated by reduced self-legitimacy. The findings are discussed with reference to how the validity and salience of the “racist cop” stereotype can be diminished.

History

Journal

Criminal Justice and Behavior

Volume

48

Article number

ARTN 0093854821993513

Pagination

776-790

Location

London, Eng.

ISSN

0093-8548

eISSN

1552-3594

Language

English

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Issue

6

Publisher

SAGE PUBLICATIONS INC