The Police and Crime Commissioner's Plan includes a priority to Tackle and Reduce Hate Crime. To help deliver this priority, the Commissioner established the Joint Hate Crime Action Group, chaired by his office and includes people from a wide range of organisations in the public and voluntary sectors. The Group holds the Police and partners to account for the work they do to address hate crime, and it is also a mechanism for developing multi-agency projects.
The Action Group held a major conference in July 2018, attended by 120 people from across County Durham and Darlington. As well as speakers from service-providing organisations, there were talks by three people who have experienced hate crime and were prepared to talk about how it has affected them. There were also 20 workshops in which colleagues came up with ideas to include in a new Hate Crime Action Plan.
Hate crime is particularly unpleasant because it is so personal. It takes place because of a person’s own background and make-up. Victims of hate crime should feel assured that the Police, and partners, will take reports of hate incidents very seriously, and they want to bring the perpetrators of hate crime to justice.
“A hate crime is any criminal offence which is perceived, by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by a hostility or prejudice based on a person’s race, religion or belief, sexual orientation, disability or transgender status.”
Hate crime affects victims, families and the wider community and targets people for who they are. It ranges from verbal abuse and harassment to criminal damage and serious assaults. Victims and witnesses are often vulnerable and require a police response that takes account of their particular situation.
Alternatively reports can be made via the True Vision third party reporting web portal at www.report-it.org.uk
Alternatively, a victim should speak to a colleague, a teacher, or someone else they trust. In any event, please do not keep it to yourself!
Victims of hate crime are being helped through an innovative network of support across County Durham and Darlington.
When the Commissioner changed his job title to include the word ‘victims’, he said that he wanted to put in place services that provide support that is customised to the needs of the victim. You can read more about those services on our supporting victims page.
Victims of Hate Crime can take advantage of the Hate Crime Advocacy Service (HCAS). HCAS employs Advocates with expertise in discrimination on the grounds of race, faith, disability and sexual orientation. They can help the victim have a voice in the criminal justice system, so that offenders are brought to justice.
Durham Constabulary have an Independent Advisory Group (IAG), which represents the diverse sectors of our communities. The group is made up of individuals from these diverse sectors who volunteer their time and knowledge to look into various issues and opportunities for people within these communities across the force area.
These individuals provide a lot of valuable work and effort for the benefit of our communities by raising awareness of the diverse sectors and for being active volunteers in tackling related issues on behalf of the public.
For further information about the IAG, please go to the Equality & Diversity section within the Durham Constabulary website.
The Commissioner provides funding for education in primary schools via Show Racism the Red Card. The team works with footballers to raise awareness with pupils to the risks of hate crime, how to identify it, and what to do if they see or experience it.
No one is born with hate for others; it’s really important to me that they do not develop a hatred for some groups within the population, and this initiative really helps to prevent that.
The Commissioner provided funding to Durham Agency Against Crime for a Hate Crime Resource Pack which launched in January 2015. This includes a DVD and lesson plans, to be used by various partners to deliver educational workshops to young people across County Durham and Darlington.
Below you can download our policy position document on hate crime.Download the Policy Position Summary document