In a column in today’s New York Law Journal, Professor Steve Zeidman discusses “quality-of-life” policing and equal protection. He writes,
As pernicious as rampant stops-and-frisks may be, they pale in comparison to quality-of-life arrests. These arrests often result in a host of impenetrable and permanent negative consequences, including deportation, eviction and ineligibility for various loans and licenses. At a minimum, the arrest records that are generated make it that much harder for people to find jobs. Unbridled quality-of-life arrests, like stops-and frisks, must be addressed in any policy that aims to take on unequal treatment of poor people of color and New York’s tale of two cities.
Zeidman is a professor and director of the Criminal Defense Clinic at CUNY Law. He advocates on behalf of indigent defendants in many venues, including as a member of the Indigent Defense Organization Oversight Committee. He presently serves on the Board of Directors of Prisoners’ Legal Services and has also served on several statewide commissions, including the Commission on the Future of Indigent Defense Services and the Jury Project.