Daily Digit: The DOJ has a big problem with gender discrimination

Sam Matthews

Daily Digit is the story behind the numbers that make our world work. Today we’re looking at the state of women within the Department of Justice’s law enforcement components, which include the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the FBI and the U.S. Marshalls Service. A new internal review, has discovered that only 16 percent of criminal investigators within the DOJ are female — far lower than the 27 percent found in similar roles within state and local law enforcement. Women make up 39.3 percent of DOJ law enforcement employees overall, but they are disproportionately relegated to support roles. Both men and women within the DOJ say that a pervasive “macho culture” could be the root of the problem, however only the DEA and FBI have issued formal plans to increase gender diversity among their staff.