Faculty in the News

Faculty News

  • Profs. Frase and Orfield and Research Director Ruhland Quoted in Star Tribune About Racial Disparities in Arrests

    July 19, 2016

    Professors Richard Frase and Myron Orfield and research director at the Robina Institute of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice, Ebony Ruhland, were quoted in a Star Tribune article examining racial disparities in Twin Cities arrests in the wake of new crime data that reveals a disparity in arrests of blacks when compared to the city’s population makeup. “There are not studies out there today that readily document overt racial bias,” said Prof. Frase. “But there is study after study after study out there demonstrating implicit racial bias when it comes to decisionmaking at every stage of Minnesota’s criminal justice system.” Prof. Orfield said that when the statewide study on racial profiling—conducted by the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity—was released 13 years ago, the area surrounding St. Anthony “was one of the worst we found” for racial profiling, meaning that nonwhites were more likely to be stopped or arrested without sufficient cause. He added that relying on arrest data is not the best way to prove racial profiling, though, noting that “there’s a lot of quick and dirty analysis being done.” Ruhland, who previously worked at the nonprofit Council on Crime and Justice, said she welcomes more data. “We can’t deny that profiling does happen. … We need to change police practices.”


  • Prof. Orfield Interviewed by the New York Times, Politico and Christian Science Monitor About Racial Segregation and Police Profiling

    July 17, 2016

    Professor Myron Orfield was interviewed by the New York Times, Politico Magazine and Christian Science Monitor about racial segregation and police profiling, and how the two are closely related. “You’re kind of looking at the greatest hits of segregation: Baltimore, Chicago, Minneapolis,” says Myron Orfield in the Christian Science Monitor, director of the University of Minnesota Law School’s Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity, referring to the police killings of Freddie Gray, Laquan McDonald, and Castile. “They are places where the black and white realities are really different for people for both race and class.”

    Specifically in the case of Philando Castile, and in response to questions of racial and ethnic bias in traffic enforcement, the New York Times cited the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity’s 2003 study, which found that African-Americans and Latinos were more likely than whites to be stopped by the police for traffic violations.

  • Prof. Younger Quoted in the Charlotte Observer About Prince Estate

    July 15, 2016

    Professor Judith T. Younger was quoted in The Charlotte Observer in an article examining recent developments regarding Prince’s estate and new “potentially relevant” information about its heirs. “It’s probably something less than a will,” said Prof. Younger, an expert in family law, wills and estates. “Any lawyer holding a valid will for Prince would have been legally obligated to produce it sooner, assuming they knew they had it.” She added that “it’s hard to see how anything like this could have a legal effect if it wasn’t properly written and executed.” 

  • The Atlantic and ThinkProgress Cite Prof. Orfield's Work on Segregation and Profiling

    July 14, 2016

    Professor Myron Orfield has been interviewed by multiple media outlets, including The Atlantic magazine and ThinkProgress.org, about his work on segregation and racial profiling. Orfield contends that segregation is an important factor that explains existing problems between police and the community. “Almost all of the places you are seeing problems between the police and the community are very segregated,” In The Atlantic he said, “Almost all of the places you are seeing problems between the police and the community are very segregated. You are not seeing these problems as often in more integrated places.” He went on to say that, Philando Castile’s shooting “illustrates the racism and tension that has accompanied the Twin Cities becoming very racially segregated over the past two decades.” ThinkProgress.org cites Orfield’s 2015 study, “Why Are The Twin Cities So Segregated?” as showing that when affordable housing in the Twin Cities suburbs dried up in the ‘90’s, it was the beginning of a return to segregation in one of the least segregated areas of the country.

  • Op-Ed on Racial Profiling and Segregation by Prof. Orfield and Will Stancil in Star Tribune, Orfield Interviewed on NPR

    July 14, 2016

    Professor Myron Orfield, director of the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity, and research fellow, Will Stancil, published an op-ed piece in the Star Tribune about what followed a 1967 presidential commission created to study racial disturbances. The commission found that “Our nation is moving toward two societies, one black, and one white–separate and unequal,” spurring the Twin Cities to adopt proactive integration policies. Over time, however, those efforts were reversed to actually increase segregation. The op-ed connects this process to recent police violence: “Stuck bridging this divide are the police. Segregation means that most officers in poor neighborhoods have little personal connection to the area they are policing. To residents, this can make officers feel like occupiers. In white areas, segregation can cultivate the idea that the duty of the police is to enforce borders.

    In an interview with National Public Radio, Professor Orfield said he wasn’t surprised at the number of times Philando Castile had been pulled over for minor traffic offenses. Orfield’s 2003 study on racial bias in policing found that African-Americans and Latinos were more likely than whites to be stopped by the police for traffic violations. ”When you see those stark residential differences between neighboring communities, it’s often a sign that there’s some underlying discrimination going on,” Orfield said.

  • Prof. Orfield Interviewed on CNN: Was Philando Castile Racially Profiled?

    July 12, 2016

    Professor Myron Orfield was interviewed by CNN reporter Rosa Flores for the “Erin Burnett OutFront” program on the subject of suburban racial profiling in the Twin Cities. 

  • Prof. Painter Quoted in Two Wall Street Journal Articles About the Potential for Trump's Conflict of Interest

    July 11, 2016

    Professor Richard W. Painter was quoted in two Wall Street Journal articles—here and here—about Donald Trump’s business enterprise and the potential conflict of interest if he were to be elected president. Trump has said he would separate himself from his business empire by establishing a blind trust. Prof. Painter, who was chief ethics lawyer during the George W. Bush administration, said, “A blind trust would never work in Trump’s case, because his assets are known, not blind, and children aren’t independent trustees.” Prof. Painter added that other modern-era wealthy presidents, such as Franklin D. Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy, were “old-money with diversified holdings who didn’t directly manage businesses the way Mr. Trump does.”  

  • Prof. Painter Quoted in New York Times Article About White House Forbidding Cabinet Members from Addressing the DNC

    July 11, 2016

    Professor Richard W. Painter was quoted in an article in the New York Times about the White House announcement that the President would forbid cabinet members from addressing the Democratic National Convention later this month. Prof. Painter, former chief White House ethics counsel during the George W. Bush administration, said that he agreed with this decision and that, “[w]ith Republicans in control of the House and the Senate, you can bet that the investigative arm will swing into action very quickly if anything is even hinted at being wrong.” 

  • Star Tribune Column Quotes Prof. Orfield & Cites IMO Study on Racial Segregation and Profiling

    July 10, 2016

    A 2003 study from the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity was featured in a Star Tribune column from Jon Tevlin about racial segregation and profiling in the Twin Cities. In reference to the study’s findings, which found that blacks were stopped 310 percent more often than expected in Twin Cities suburbs, Professor Myron Orfield, director of the IMO, said, “We have become really segmented, really fast. In particular, when we had a very white community next to a community with more diversity, we tended to have a very high number of [traffic] stops.”

  • Prof. Orfield Discusses Racial Profiling in Saint Paul Suburbs

    July 8, 2016

    Professor Myron Orfield was interviewed by KARE 11 news concerning the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity’s 2003 racial-profiling study, which showed that blacks were three times more likely than whites to be stopped while driving in Saint Paul suburbs.


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E.g., Jul 27 2016

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