August 15, 2019

Indiana's Supreme Court, Like Many States', Lacks Diversity

Original story from   IPBS-RJC

Article origination IPBS-RJC
The Indiana Supreme Court chambers.  - FILE PHOTO: Lauren Chapman/IPB News

The Indiana Supreme Court chambers.

FILE PHOTO: Lauren Chapman/IPB News

State supreme courts across the country are far less diverse than their states’ populations – Indiana's included.

A new study from the Brennan Center For Justice looked at diversity on states’ highest judicial bodies.

Nearly half the states in the country currently have an all-white supreme court, Indiana among them. Seventeen have only one woman on the bench – the Hoosier state is on that list, too.

The Brennan Center criticizes those disparities. It argues a lack of judicial diversity limits the perspectives judges can draw on to develop legal interpretations for a country that’s growing more diverse.

Indiana has had 110 Supreme Court justices in its history. Only two have been women, and only two have been people of color. This decade, there have been 13 people nominated to the state’s high court. None of them were people of color and only four of them were women – with only one, current Chief Justice Loretta Rush, actually appointed to the bench.

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