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Hate Crime

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What is a hate crime?

Hate crimes and incidents come in many different forms. It can be because of hatred on the grounds of your race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender identity or disability.

A hate crime is a crime that has been committed where the victim believes their attacker was motivated by their hatred of and prejudice towards their race, religion, sexual orientation, trans identity or disability.

Hate crimes and incidents come in many different forms. Any abusive behaviour that expresses prejudice can be a hate crime, and this can include:

  • Verbal abuse.
  • Acting in a threatening or intimidating way.
  • A physical attack.
  • Stealing or damaging your belongings.
  • Sending abusive or offensive messages.
  • Blackmail.
  • Encouraging others to target people who have a shared identity, for example, LGBT+ people, wheelchair users, Black people, etc.

Hate crime in any form is wrong. That is why it is important that if any hate crime happens to you or someone you know, you should report it.

Seek Help.

  • If you think the person being attacked may need immediate police or medical help, call 999.
  • To speak directly to your local police, you can call 101.
  • Find a nearby, responsible adult. If you are in school, find a teacher. If you are somewhere like a train station, find a staff member.

Take appropriate action.

  • Physically or verbally attacking the abuser may feel like the way to break up whatever is going on but could result in you getting into trouble or you getting hurt. If it is safe to do so, speak to the victim and pay attention to them. Chat with them, ignore the abusers and walk away from the situation and stay in public spaces until you find a responsible adult or a safe space.

Report it.

  • You do not have to be the victim of a hate crime to report one. Speak to the police and make a statement about what happened; you may have important information that the victim cannot remember.
  • You can report crimes by calling 101, visiting a police station or completing the True Vision Hate Crime/Incident reporting form.

You have the right to express yourself and live free from abuse – hate crime is never the fault of the victim.

Seek help. You can do this in multiple ways. 

  • If you need immediate police or medical help, call 999.
  • To talk to the police directly you can use their non-emergency number 101.
  • If you would prefer not to speak to the police initially but you would like to chat to someone for advice and support, you can contact the LGBT+ anti-violence charity Galop whose website you can access here.

Record what happened.  

  • Memories fade quickly and the details of the event can be important. Try to write down what happened including who the person was or what they looked like.
  • If this hate crime is ongoing, with the same person harassing you, it is useful to keep a record of what happens including the dates and times.
  • If you have been injured, as well as seeking medical help, photograph your injuries as they may later be used as evidence.

Look after yourself. 

  • We hope you are never the victim of a hate crime but if it does happen it can be very stressful and upsetting. We encourage you to talk to someone and share how you are feeling. Try using our instant messaging service or a call-in system like LGBT+ Switchboard.
  • As well as caring for your mental wellbeing, look after your physical health. Care for your body with good food, lots of water, some exercise and enough sleep.

True Vision has lots of information about the different types of hate crime and what they may look like – you can check out their website here.

Galop is an LGBT+ anti-violence charity that can offer guidance and support – you can access their website here.


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