A new Gallup poll released Wednesday shows an overwhelming majority of black Americans, 81 percent, support either the same amount or an increased police presence in their communities.
The survey, conducted June 23 – July 6, showed 61 percent of black Americans supported police spending the same about of time in their neighborhoods while 20 percent wanted law enforcement to spend more time in their streets. Nineteen percent said police should spend less time in their community.
In contrast, 24 percent of Hispanic Americans wanted more policing compared to 17 percent of white Americans and 9 percent of Asian Americans, who were also most likely to report supporting a decrease in police presence in their neighborhoods at 28 percent.
Black Americans reported the highest levels of seeing officers in their neighborhoods: 32 percent said they saw police either often or very often. Twenty-eight percent of Hispanic Americans said the same compared to 22 percent of white Americans and 21 percent of Asian Americans.
The survey was conducted in English online, taking answers from 36,463 adults aged 18 and older with a +/-1.4 percent margin of error. The poll comes from Gallup’s new Center on Black Voices. Gallup reported that the findings remain consistent with a previous poll showing only 22 percent of black Americans supporting calls to abolish police departments.
Despite contradicting the views of the vast majority of black Americans, demands for defunding police have become a signature of the contemporary Black Lives Matter movement. Fifty-eight percent of Americans said do agree that policing needs “major changes.”
In June, the Minneapolis City Council voted unanimously to disband its police department tasked with protecting more than 400,000 residents.
The latest Gallup poll comes amid a crime wave sweeping the nation’s cities as animosity towards police reaches new heights from a vocal minority, demoralizing law enforcement and stripping resources dedicated to ensuring public safety. The cities of Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Nashville, Chicago, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, and New Orleans have reach seen homicides jump more than 20 percent just this year. Research links lockdowns and anti-police sentiment to higher rates of civil unrest.