Black Men Killed More in the US

About one in every thousand Black men are killed by the police in the United States, making them 2-5 times more likely to be killed by police than white men, according to a new Lancet study.

In the 40-year study period (1980-2019), the report said that Black Americans were estimated to be 3.5 times more likely to die from police violence than white Americans. Black women are about 1-4 times more likely to be killed by police than are White women.


The Lancet report finds that systemic and direct racism, manifested in laws and policies as well as personal implicit biases making Black, Indigenous, and Hispanic Americans being the targets of police violence. The report finds significance in the wake of high-profile killings by police in the country. The study looked into under-reporting of police violence in US Government-run vital registration data and offers a method for correcting under-reporting in these datasets, and presents revised estimates of deaths due to police violence in the US.


The Lancet study found that police disproportionately killed Black people at a rate of 35 times higher than White people, and the same proportion was related to Hispanic and Indigenous people. It noted that the rate of fatal police violence was higher in every year for Black Americans than for White Americans. In the US, more males died from police violence in 2019 (1140 deaths) than from environmental heat and cold exposure (931), Hodgkin lymphoma (835 deaths), testicular cancer (486 deaths), appendicitis (373 deaths), exposure to forces of nature (62 deaths) and sexually transmitted diseases (37 deaths).


The authors said that they estimated about 30,800 deaths from police violence between 1980 and 2018 across all races and states. This represents 17,100 more deaths than reported by the National Vital Statistics System (NVSS) . Over this time period, the age-standardised mortality rate due to police violence was highest in non-Hispanic Black people (0-69 per 100 000), followed by Hispanic people of any race (0-35), non-Hispanic White people (0-20), and non-Hispanic people of other races  (015). The report said that the variation was further affected by the decedent’s sex and shows large discrepancies between states Between 1980 and 2018, the NVSS did not report 55.5% (548-56 2) of all deaths attributable to police violence. When aggregating all races, the age standardised mortality rate due to police violence was 0 25 (0 24-0-26) per 100 000 in the 1980s and 0 34 (0 34-0 35) per 100 000 in the 2010s, an increase of 38-4% (32-4-45-1) over the period of study.



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