Hate crimes are crimes targeted at a person because of hostility or prejudice toward that person’s:
- race or ethnicity
- religion or belief
- sexual orientation
- transgender identity
These types of crime can be committed against people or property and a victim doesn’t have to be a member of the group that the hostility is aimed at. Hate crimes where the law has been broken should be reported to the police.
Reporting hate crime
If you or someone you know has experienced hate crime, reporting it can stop it happening to someone else. Reporting it also helps the police better understand the level of hate crime in your area and improve the way the respond to it.
Incidents can be reported by victims or witnesses. Incidents can range from verbal abuse, threatening or aggressive behaviour – even through letters, emails or social media – criminal damage to personal property, or physical attacks.
You should contact the police to report hate crime. You can:
call 101 if it’s not an emergency fill in an online crime form on the Avon and Somerset Police website:
You can also report hate crime anonymously to CrimeStoppers on their website or by calling 0800 555 111.
Support for people affected by hate incidents
There are a number of local organisation offering support and advice.
This service lets people who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech impediment contact the emergency service by texting 999. Mobile phone numbers must be registered with the service before it can be used.
Responding to Hate Incidents in North SomersetThe Responding to Hate Incidents in North Somerset (RHINS) multi-agency partnership was established in 2002 and leads the implementation of the North Somerset Hate Crime strategy. The purpose of RHINS is to:
- promote best practice and collaborative working between local agencies, support organisations and members of the community involved with hate incidents in North Somerset.
- achieve consistency of approach and effective resolution of hate incidents across partner agencies.
- identify any hate crime issues using available partnership data and to collaborate and use the resources of all partners to tackle identified issues
- raise awareness of and improve confidence in the reporting procedure as well as unblock any blockages in reporting
- give support and guidance on the development of partner policies and procedures that relate to hate incidents or the promotion of equality, diversity and community cohesion.