Published In

Understanding & Dismantling Privilege: The Official Journal of the White Privilege Conference and the Matrix Center for the Advancement of Social Equity and Inclusion

Document Type


Publication Date



Discrimination in law enforcement -- United States, Race awareness, Race relations, Social justice -- Study and teaching -- United States


The systemic racism embedded in and embodied by law enforcement has resulted in nationwide protests, sparking a call to action that has particular resonance and urgency for social justice educators. While the need for transformed education of police officers is critical, educators may ask: What pedagogic tools are most effective in police departments? How might educators respond to officers’ resistance to learning about inequality? And what obstacles might educators have to overcome in order to do this work? In this case study, I draw from 11 years of experience providing consulting and training to a city police department, sharing key insights designed to further discussion about the essential ethical, pedagogical, and practical considerations. Topics include effective assessment, pedagogical design, negotiating resistance, and building relationships. While the needs of each community and police department are highly contextual, this case study is designed to further dialogue among social justice educators regarding our unique role in the struggle to create a justice system worthy of its name.


Amie Thurber was affiliated with Vanderbilt University at the time of publication.

Persistent Identifier

Included in

Social Work Commons