Black troops two times more likely to face disciplinary action

Black members of the military are more likely to face disciplinary actions than their white comrades, according to a new study.

Advocacy group Protect our Defenders, based on findings from Freedom of Information Act requests, found that black troops — depending on their branch of service and type of action — were up to two times more likely than white service members to have action taken against them, USA Today reported.

“Over the past decade, racial disparities have persisted in the military justice system without indication of improvement,” the report reads. “These disparities are particularly striking for black service members, who face military justice of disciplinary action at much higher rates than white service members in every service branch.”

It continues on to state the disparity between black and white officers has “remained consistent” over the years, while it has increased in both the Air Force and the Marines, according to USA today.

According to the report, between 2006 and 2015, black Marines were 2.61 times more likely to get a guilty verdict at a general court-martial, though a guilty finding in a non-judicial punishment proceeding was only 1.29 more times likely, The Hill reported.

During the same period, black members of the Air Force were 1.71 times more likely than their white comrades to face court-martial or non-judicial punishment, according to the report.

Black soldiers in the army were 1.61 times more likely to face the same disciplinary actions than their white counterparts.

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The Navy provided information for only 2014 and 2015 — in that time black sailors were 1.4 times more likely to have action taken against them.

A spokesman for the Pentagon told USA it will review Protect our Defenders’ report.

“It is longstanding Department of Defense policy that service members must be afforded the opportunity to serve in an environment free from unlawful racial discrimination,” Pentagon spokesperson Johnny Michael said. “The department will review any new information concerning implementation and compliance with this policy.”

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