Girlhood Interrupted: The Erasure of Black Girls’ Childhood

The Georgetown Law Center on Poverty and Inequality, which published this report, works with policymakers, researchers, practitioners, and advocates to develop effective policies and practices that alleviate poverty and inequality in the United States. The Center’s areas of anti-poverty work include national, state, and local policy and program recommendations that help marginalized girls, promote effective workforce and education policies and programs for disconnected youth, and develop policy to combat deep poverty. Our strategies are to partner with agencies and non-profit organizations to host national conferences, produce and widely disseminate in-depth reports, engage in public speaking, and participate in national coalitions and working groups.
 
This groundbreaking study by the Georgetown Law Center on Poverty and Inequality provides—for the first time—data showing that adults view Black girls as less innocent and more adult-like than their white peers, especially in the age range of 5–14. The report builds on similar results that have emerged from studies of adult perceptions of Black boys. In 2014, for example, research by Professor Phillip Goff and colleagues revealed that beginning at the age of 10, Black boys are more likely than their white peers to be misperceived as older, viewed as guilty of suspected crimes, and face police violence if accused of a crime.
 

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