The government has announced a new hate crime action plan in the wake of Brexit and terrorist attacks in Europe. The plan builds on the previous plan – Challenge It, Report It, Stop It – published in 2012.
Among the new measures included in the new plan are:
- the publication, for the first time, of detailed findings from the Crime Survey for England and Wales on the extent of hate crime victimisation in England and Wales;
- improved police recording of hate crime – police forces will be required to record hate crimes under all five of the monitored strands, and publish that data as Official Statistics;
- funding for a number of projects with voluntary sector organisations working with victims of hate crime; and
- amended legislation to provide for enhanced sentencing in a wider range of crimes, including for the first time a victim’s transgender identity as an aggravating factor.
We haven’t seen an increase in hate crime in Lambeth since Brexit but there is a big gap between the estimated number of hate crimes and those that get reported to the police.
According to the independent Crime Survey for England and Wales, there were an estimated 222,000 hate crimes on average each year from 2012/13 to 2014/15. But only about a quarter of these were reported to the police – the difference between police figures and the crime survey shows that hate crimes continue to be significantly under-reported.
If you are a victim of hate crime or know someone who is report it to the police on 101 or 999 in an emergency.