×

Driver's license suspensions for failure to pay fines inflict particular harm on Black drivers

Black drivers are more likely to encounter police regardless of how they drive, research shows. Rich Legg/Getty Images

Driver's license suspensions for failure to pay fines inflict particular harm on Black drivers

Black drivers are more likely to encounter police regardless of how they drive, research shows. Rich Legg/Getty Images

Driver's license suspensions for failure to pay fines inflict particular harm on Black drivers

Black drivers are more likely to encounter police regardless of how they drive, research shows. Rich Legg/Getty Images

Driver's license suspensions for failure to pay fines inflict particular harm on Black drivers

Black drivers are more likely to encounter police regardless of how they drive, research shows. Rich Legg/Getty Images

These are some of the situations facing millions of Americans who were unable to pay fines – and whose lives were turned into a nightmare by overly punitive policies in response.

Sian Mughan, Arizona State University

Imagine being unable to pay a US$50 traffic ticket and, as a result, facing mounting fees so high that even after paying hundreds, maybe thousands, of dollars toward your debt you still owe money.

Imagine being fired from your job because you’ve been forced to use unreliable public transportation instead of your car.

And imagine going to jail several times because, even though your license is suspended, you had to drive to work.

These are some of the situations facing millions of Americans who were unable to pay fines – and whose lives were turned into a nightmare by overly punitive policies in response.

And these policies have an outsize, and damaging, impact on Black Americans, according to our research.

Disagree with this article?
Create an Opposing View
Add Related Article