Americans’ trust in police bounced back in 2015 despite the recent slew of questionable police conduct cases and Black Lives Matter attacks, a new Gallup poll shows.
From 2010 to 2013, Americans rated the honesty and ethics of police from 54 to 58 percent. In 2014, that number dropped to 48 percent as cases like the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., and Eric Garner in Staten Island, N.Y. created distrust. But in 2015 the number jumped back to 56 percent.
Even as scandal and protests erupted in Chicago over the death of Laquan McDonald and Baltimore erupted in riots over the death of Freddie Gray, the national feeling on police has regained its majority positive view.
This drop and subsequent rebound was caused by minority views of police. The number of nonwhites who viewed the ethical standards of police as high or very high was only 23 percent in 2014, but that number increased to about 40 percent in 2015. The poll was conducted in December just after the August death of Brown.
The results are part of an annual Gallup poll conducted earlier this month asking Americans to rate the honesty and ethical standards of common professions. Nurses topped the list this year, as they have almost every year since 1999. Congress sits on the bottom rung of the professions polled, along with lobbyists and telemarketers, with less than 10 percent of Americans saying these professions have high ethical standards.
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