Adults think that black girls are less innocent, less in need of protection and nurturing, and seem older than similarly aged white girls, which could lead to stiffer punishments in school, a new report said Tuesday.
The report also said American adults think black girls know more about adult topics and about sex than white girls of the same age. And those perceptions are greater when it comes to younger black girls ages 5-9 and 10-14. The discrepancy continues to a lesser degree with girls ages 15-19.
“This new evidence of what we call the ‘adultification’ of black girls may help explain why black girls in America are disciplined much more often and more severely than white girls, across our schools and in our juvenile justice system,” said Rebecca Epstein, lead author of the report and executive director of the Center on Poverty and Inequality at the Georgetown University Law Center.
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