TAKE ACTION: Be Prepared to Document Racial Profiling

Thank you for taking the time to consider submitting testimony to the Racial Profiling: Face the Truth Hearings and Campaign.  We appreciate your efforts and your time, especially considering what you have been through.  We hope your testimony along with the testimony of others at our hearings throughout the nation will help provide advocates with the inspiration to make it harder to profile in the future.

This question sheet is meant to assist you in preparing your testimony for the Face the Truth hearings.  The best way to prepare is to write down your experience, have someone read through it, and discuss with that person how understandable, relevant, and concise your statement is.  It is important to review your testimony with at least one additional person who is not familiar with it, as one of the most important elements of telling your story is making sure it can be understood to a complete stranger without needing extra explanation.  Thank you again, and we hope this document assists you in preparing your statement.

  1. When and where did the incident occur?  Date, time, place (location — did it happen on the street, in a shopping mall, at the border, etc.), city, and state.
  2. What type of incident was it?  (Traffic?  Border crossing?  Pedestrian stop?  shopping?  Other?)
  3. What type of officer did you have the encounter with?  (city police? CBP? ICE? Sheriff’s deputy?)  If you don’t know exactly, describe the color/type of uniform the officer wore, the type of car they drove, any other characteristics of their dress ).
  4. Describe the events of the incident in as much detail as possible.  What were you doing when you encountered the officer?  What were your plans before you encountered the officer?  Begin at the beginning of the story, and tell it as if you were walking someone through what happened.
  5. Were you searched or questioned?  Was your ID, license, registration or immigration documents checked (which of these?)
  6. Were you cited, ticketed, given an warning, arrested?  For what?
  7. What was the result?
  8. If you refused a search, did the officer take additional action?  If you consented to a search, what happened?  Was anything found?
  9. Was anything illegal found?
  10. Were there any witnesses?
  11. Do you believe you were targeted because of your race, ethnicity, national origin or religion?  Did the officer specifically say or do anything to make you believe these characteristics played a role in the encounter?
  12. Please indicate what type of profiling you believe occurred.
  13. Did you make a complaint to anyone regarding the incident?
  14. If yes, to whom did you make the complaint?  What was the response?
  15. If you were not searched, cited or ticketed, was an explanation given for why you were stopped or approached?  If yes, what was the explanation?
  16. How long was your encounter with the officer(s)?  Did the incident significantly disrupt your plans?
  17. How has this made you and/or your family feel?
  18. Are you doing anything differently now?

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