Risk Assessment Tools: All Risk, Little Reward

 

As more states adopt risk assessment tools to gauge risk and recidivism, questions about efficacy, ethics and racial bias continue to rise

The Texas Alliance for Safe Communities today issued the following press release outlining the growing concerns surrounding the use of risk assessment tools in determining the fate of criminal defendants.

In recent years, it has become increasingly evident that risk assessment tools are far worse in practice than in abstract, with the pitfalls of using such a tool including:

They have led to an increase in failure-to-appear rates and pretrial crime;

They are no more effective in determining risk than the average human with no criminal justice experience;

They are privately-owned, yet costly to taxpayers and relatively unproven;

They may actually increase incarceration rates;

They remove jurisdiction from seasoned, elected judges; and

They are inherently biased toward minority defendants.

 

Read full press release: Risk Assessments Biased, Unsafe

The Texas Alliance for Safe Communities is a non-profit, 501(c)(4) coalition of public safety advocates committed to promoting responsible public policies that strengthen security and curb violent crime in Texas.

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