Wearing Police-Like Uniform May Lead to Social Bias

Simply putting on a police-like uniform immediately affects our perceptions toward others, creating a bias towards those considered to be of a low social status, according to a new study by cognitive neuroscientists at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada.

The findings, published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, raise important questions about stereotypes and profiling, and about how the symbolic power and authority associated with police uniforms might affect these tendencies.

“We all know that the police generally do an excellent job, but there has also been a great deal of public discourse about biased policing in North America over recent years,” said Dr. Sukhvinder Obhi, an associate professor of psychology, neuroscience & behaviour and senior author of the study, which was conducted with postdoctoral researcher Ciro Civile, Ph.D. Full Article