Author and Educator
Dr. Michael Hames-García studies and teaches about inequalities of race, class, gender, sexuality and disability in the criminal justice system from policing and criminal courts to incarceration and reentry. His current research examines liberal responses to popular demands for racial justice.
Not What We Had In Mind:
Policing in Crisis and the Limits of Community Oversight
A multi-case study of community oversight of law enforcement in British Columbia, Los Angeles County, and Eugene, Oregon. Community oversight includes both civilian government oversight bodies and unofficial forms of community engagement with the police, policymakers, and the oversight process such as mass protests, grassroots organizing, investigative reporting, and popular education. Such popular responses to policing have prompted the establishment of oversight policies in almost every instance and are now driving policymakers to rethink existing policies. Community-based demands for police accountability arise in moments of crisis. Yet they too often get displaced by local planning mechanisms, which often seek transparency in reviewing police conduct but do not always lead to significant changes in police conduct.