Listed below are letters since 2009 explaining to institutions or organizations – with respect to the recipients’ own analyses of demographic differences, analyses by others that pertain to the recipients, or guidance on analyses of demographic differences that the recipients have given (or should give) to others – that most analyses of demographic differences regarding outcome rates are undermined by failure to recognize patterns by which measures tend to be affected by the prevalence of an outcome. Many items since 2012 are principally focused on the mistaken belief that generally reduce some adverse outcome will tend to reduce relative demographic differences in rates of experiencing the outcomes and explain that the opposite is the case. Some recent materials, as in the case of the two sets of comments to the Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking (CEBP) and materials relating to the Baltimore Police Consent Decree, fall outside the above description. Recent treatments of the issues addressed in the letters may be found in “The Mismeasure of Health Disparities,” Journal of Public Health Management and Practice (July/Aug. 2016), “Race and Mortality Revisited,” Society (July/Aug. 2014), and “The Mismeasure of Health Disparities in Massachusetts and Less Affluent Places,” Methods Seminar, Department of Quantitative Health Sciences, University of Massachusetts Medical School (Nov. 18, 2015).
(Letter explains that obligations to generally reduce discipline rates pursuant to an April 2016 agreement with Department of Education will tend to increase racial disparities in discipline rates according to measures employed by the Department of Education.)
(Letter explains the premise underlying July 2016 suit brought against school district – that generally reducing suspension rates will tend to reduce proportion African Americans make up of suspended students is opposite of reality.)
(Letter, which may deemed a follow up to the letter of October 5, 2016, urges the ASA to explain the President of the United States statistical beliefs reflected in a speech on July 7, 2016) are the opposite of reality. See also “Things the President Doesn’t Know About Racial Disparities,” Federalist Society Blog (Aug. 5, 2016).)
(Letter explains to recipients, with respect to 2015 report they issued on discipline practices of Eureka (CA) City Schools, that generally reducing adverse discipline outcomes tends to increase, not decrease, relative differences in discipline rates and proportions more susceptible groups make up of persons experiencing the outcome.