NSW Police has been accused of unfairly targeting indigenous people after the emergence of data indicating the use of sniffer dogs is disproportionately concentrated in areas with larger indigenous populations.
The research commissioned by The Greens found that a person is more than 650% more likely more likely to be searched in the five most indigenous-populated (aged 18-35) parts of Sydney.
“This data confirms a long-running suspicion about the police drug dog program,” Greens MP David Shoebridge told Fairfax. “The police have never been able to explain why a train station like Redfern – with a high population of students and Aboriginal people – is constantly hit with drug dogs despite having one of the worst results at finding drugs.”
Meanwhile NSW Police has disputed the findings, saying demographics of an area are not considered when deciding where to send the dogs.
“The demographics of an area are not taken into account in these decisions,” a spokesman told Fairfax. “Decisions on where to deploy detection dogs are intelligence-based and focus on locations where the use and supply of illicit drugs is known to have an increased prevalence.”
The sniffer dog program is notoriously shit, with dogs being wrong about someone having drugs as much as 80% of the time.