Samuel Kuhn & Stephen Lurie

Samuel Kuhn, currently a student at Yale Law School, was until recently a Field Adviser with the National Network for Safe Communities at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, where he led implementation on the Department of Justice’s National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice. Stephen Lurie works on the Research and Policy team at the National Network for Safe Communities. Kuhn and Lurie are co-authors of a recent practitioner guidebook on reconciliation between police and communities (Executive SummaryFull Report)

Recent Articles

American Police Must Own Their Racial Injustices

To improve relationships with communities of color, a reconciliation movement has begun in several cities, in which police brush up on their history, admit past mistakes, and listen to frank talk and hard truths. 

Americans rarely discuss racial injustice. When they do, many people treat the subject like an exorcised demon, a distant past without present-day legacies. But Americans still live in a country characterized by racial hierarchy that infuses its institutions and organizations. Lawmakers, reflecting the will of a sizeable portion of the public, set the laws that made slavery, Jim Crow, and mass incarceration possible. Schools, hospitals, businesses, and municipal agencies implemented those measures. And law enforcement exacted the consequences for disobeying them. Police have been central to American racial injustice since our nation’s founding, when nascent police forces enforced slave codes. Today, the wars on crime and drugs continue to produce disproportionate and destructive enforcement in black and brown neighborhoods. Communities’ of color deep distrust of law enforcement is multi-generational and well-founded. And as the recent “ living while black ”...