What is National Hate Crime Awareness Week?
2020 was the 25th anniversary of ‘Stop Hate UK.’ From the 10-17th October 2020, the UK celebrated National Hate Crime Awareness Week. It is essentially a week-long event designed to encourage local authorities (police and parliament) who have been affected by hate crime. The local authorities and community work together to prevent hate crime.
Since 2007, the British police have recognised 5 types of hate crimes:
- Ethnic minority and racial
- Sexual orientation
Hate crime refers to a criminal act towards another individual based on prejudice and bias due to the following circumstances:
- Racial identity
- Religious beliefs and values
- Sexual orientation
It includes a direct attack towards the individual or their property, and the victim does not necessarily have to be a member of a hostile target group. In actual fact, anyone can be a victim of a hate crime.
What is a hate incident?
For the victim, a hate incident feels like a crime and it can often lead to increase crime and tension within the local community so the police are worried about these types of issues. Victims of hate incidents and hate crimes can go online at https://www.report-it.org.uk/your_police_force and report the incident. Although the police can only prosecute the perpetrator when/if they break the law, by reporting the incident the police can work together with the local community to prevent the situation escalating.
In the event of a serious incident, you must call 999. If the situation isn’t too alarming, please call 101. If you don’t want to liase with the police, you can ring your local authorities (some local authorities have the jurisdiction to handle hate incidents.) Or you can contact a third party organisation who can offer you support and advice.
Why should we report hate crime? is a hate incident?
Hate incidents and hate crimes can leave the victim feeling hurt, embarrassed and anxious. By reporting an incident when it happens can prevent the same situation happening to someone else. It also provides the police with relevant information regarding the time and place of the incidents, so in the future they are better equipped to respond.
How to confront hate crimes caused by COVID-19?
Since the beginning of this year, there has been a significant increase in the number of racial hate crimes towards Asian and South East Asian communities within the UK. In correspondence with the UK’s National Hate Crime Awareness Week, Walford Trust, Protection Approaches and the Newham Chinese Association, together with the City of London Police and the Brent local government have organised an online discussion titled ‘hate crime derived from COVID-19.’ The online discussion focuses on the phenomenon of hate crime and the most effective ways to handle these situations.
The list of guest speakers include:
- Sir Kenneth Olisa OBE – HM Lord-Lieutenant of Greater London
- Cllr Ernest Ezeajughi – Mayor of Brent
- Hau Yu Tam – Core team member, End the Virus of Racism Campaign
- Abdul Haque – Crime Prevention, Inclusion and Engagement, New Scotland Yard
- Mei Sim Lai OBE – Chair of Chinese Welfare Trust
- Andy Fearn – Co-Executive Director, Protection Approaches