We are pleased to share with you the latest CPS Hate Crime Newsletter. It’s packed full of information, including positive outcomes in CPS areas, information on Hate Crime Reports and Events, Social Media Guidelines and much more.
The recent report, issued by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabularies (HMIC), says that Police in England and Wales must tackle ‘significant problems’ in handling Hate Crime.
It’s a headline that makes people sit up and take notice and many are quick to criticise the authorities for not always getting things right in this area. However, there is a wider perspective that must be considered when looking at this potentially sensitive issue.
Whilst many of the UK’s Police forces have a Hate Crime strategy and defined strands of Hate Crime, there is still a lack of training and understanding about what Hate Crime is, the correct way to record the incidents and having the time, expertise and knowledge of how to respond to victims and witnesses.
We know that there is a great deal of inconsistency of the quality and quantity of training and we would like to see Hate Crime training prioritised – including refresher training – and checks to ensure that the message and policies are fully understood.
Our Police forces are already vastly overstretched and have had funding consistently cut for the last few years. However, if the report’s predicted trend in the rise of Hate Crime incidents does come to fruition in 2019, then those resources will be even more stretched to cope with any increase, no matter what the level.
It is, therefore, vital that the Police and authorities make use of the advice, support and training that is available to them from specialist 3rd party organisations, such as Stop Hate UK and that, collectively, we must adopt a collaborative approach to tackling Hate Crime.
Often, when people make their very first call to report or ask for advice regarding what could be perceived to be a Hate Crime or Hate Incident, that first conversation or point of contact is, arguably, their most vital conversation.
This is where 3rd party groups, organisations and charities provide such vital support to the Police. It is this specialist, expert advice that can often be the difference in how someone perceives their entire experience, in terms of the help they receive and their journey towards a resolution and/or outcome.
Stop Hate UK currently provide support to a number of the UK’s police forces and have developed many key relationships with other organisations during this time, proving that a collaborative effort is the key to tackling Hate Crime in our society, and that we are truly stronger together.
To find out more about Stop Hate UK, our training and support services and our work to assist in tackling Hate in our society, visit our website or search for our social media platforms.
This year, we are recognising the 23rd anniversary of the genocide in Srebrenica, during which thousands of men and boys were systematically murdered, simply because they were Muslim. As an organisation that works to/with people affected by Hate Crime, we feel it is vital to commemorate Srebrenica to take a stand against hatred and discrimination that targets groups based on their religion, ethnicity, gender, sexuality or any type of difference.
The theme “Acts of Courage” is a reminder that hope and the common bonds of humanity can triumph in the darkest of times. We are all invited to draw strength and inspiration from those who, during the genocide and ethnic cleansing, were bold enough to resist an ideology of division, protect their neighbours, and speak out for truth and justice. The baton of courage has now been passed on and it is up to us learn the lessons from Srebrenica.
It is now more important than ever for us to come together as people in the UK, no matter what our background, to celebrate diversity and to stand together in solidarity against hatred and discrimination. We hope you will join us in mourning the loss of those who died at Srebrenica, and reflecting on how we as individuals, groups and communities can come together to build a better future without hatred.
On 14th June, in Leeds Civic Hall, people from community groups, charities, the city council and the police came together, with a common goal – to ‘Galvanise Leeds’ towards being a Hate free city.
Organised by Stop Hate UK, the event was held in association with Safer Leeds and Passion Works CIC and was one of the first of its kind in the city, in terms of having such a diverse audience, made up of those at the forefront of the city’s Hate Crime Strategy, but also those who are no less involved yet, until now, have perhaps not had the platform or the access to such resources.
The event had received funding and assistance from the National Lottery Awards for All, Leeds’s Community Safety Partnership, Safer Leeds and the University of Leeds.
After a welcoming address from our very own Chief Executive, Rose Simkins, it was the turn of Harvinder Saimbhi, Head of Anti-social Behaviour for Leeds City Council, speaking as Head of Operational Delivery, gave a great presentation on the progress made by the Leeds Hate Crime strategy and its priorities for 2018.
We then welcomed Leeds GATE, the award winning community members organisation for Gypsies and Travellers, who presented a video they had made themselves, highlighting the issues faced by the group’s members. This was followed by a passionate address from Sophia Thomas, Director of TransLeeds, who provide support and advocacy for all trans* identifying people across Leeds.
The morning’s keynote speeches were rounded off by Stop Hate UK’s Director of London Services, but in his guise as Chair of the Government Independent Advisory Group (IAG) talking about the Hate Crime National Strategy and Priorities.
Prior to the day of the conference, delegates were invited to select to participate in a number of workshops, facilitated by various groups and individuals and it was at this point the audience divided to join their chosen morning workshops.
The morning workshops were run by West Yorkshire Police, Stop Hate UK, Ann Chapman Consultancy and Leeds Development Education Centre & Voice Influence & Change Team, covering such topics as transport, reporting and monitoring Hate Crime in Leeds, what communities should be included and young people, respectively.
After a break for lunch, the afternoon workshops commenced, featuring topics such as Online Hate, Hate Crime in public places (city centre and nighttime economy, what makes a ‘safe place’ and engaging reporting and signposting in Leeds.
These workshops were delivered by Aspire CBS, the Sophie Lancaster Foundation, Stop Hate UK and Tea and Tolerance.
After another welcome refreshment break, the afternoon moved into a plenary session, introduced again by Rose Simkins, who welcomed the Ambassador of the Jo Cox Foundation and lead on the ‘More in Common’ movement, Kim Leadbeater, who delivered a rousing address on just how the tragic death of her sister Jo Cox has completely changed her life and focus, which certainly touched many members of the audience.
After a feedback session from each of the workshop groups, it was left for Rose to close the day and thank all the attendees, speakers and facilitators, plus those who had helped to organise this amazing and unique day.
Commenting on the day, Rose said “We are very proud that Leeds is such a diverse city, but we need to ensure that all people, whatever their identity, feel part of it and, when we say diverse, are we including everybody? We need to ensure that all voices are heard and that we all feel safe and secure in Leeds. I hope this event means there will now be a raft of things we can introduce that will make it even better.”
To find out more about Stop Hate UK or Galvanising Leeds, visit our website by clicking here.
Merseyside’s Police Commissioner is today marking the third anniversary of Victim Care Merseyside by holding a special event at which she will recognise the service’s achievements and explain how £3m of support for victims of crime will be delivered over the next three years.
More than 19,000 vulnerable victims of crime have been given specialist, tailored support and advice from the services commissioned through Victim Care Merseyside since it was launched by Jane Kennedy in June 2015.
Additionally, more than 15,000 young people have taken part in group sessions to increase their awareness of exploitation and how to protect themselves, while 4,300 professionals have been trained to increase their understanding of crimes involving in children and what action to take if they fear a child is at risk.
These achievements will be recognised and celebrated at an event at the Holiday Inn on Lime Street today (Wednesday 20th June), at which the PCC will alsoformally re-launch Victim Care Merseyside and unveil the services which will be running for the next three years. This includes a brand new support service for victims and survivors of harmful practices, including FGM, so-called ‘honour-based’ violence and forced marriage delivered by Savera UK. There will also be new support for families who have lost a loved one through homicide or crime-related road traffic collisions at ‘The Hub’ provided by Families Fighting for Justice.
Over the next three years, Victim Care Merseyside will also provide more tailored support for victims of hate crime, with care down by ‘strand’, to ensure victims of racial hate crime, sexuality and gender identity-based hate crime and people subjected to hate because of a disability all receive specialist support according to their need.
Victim Care Merseyside will also continue to provide a host of pan-Merseyside specialist services designed to support the most vulnerable victims of crime, including child victims of exploitation – both sexual and criminal, victims of rape and sexual assault, and domestic abuse.
Jane said: “I’m pleased that over the last three years, Victim Care Merseyside has provided more than 19,000 victims of crime with the specialist support they need to help them to become survivors. When somebody is subjected to a traumatic experience, it is only right they get the best possible care and support to help them on the road to recovery.
“These are still early days in the commissioning of local support services for victims, so it is right that I keep this under review to make sure we are delivering what is needed. Crime too is constantly evolving, so I want to make sure we are meeting the needs of victims today, and in the future. That’s why, last year I took the decision to fully review the Victim Care Merseyside service to make sure it still fits the bill and whether any improvements could be made.
“As we mark the third anniversary, I’m delighted to not only celebrate Victim Care Merseyside’s achievements so far, but also relaunch the refreshed service which will continue to deliver many vital services, but also offer new and enhanced support for some of the most vulnerable people.
“I was particularly proud that we were one of the first areas in the country to offer specialist support for victims of child criminal exploitation and we are expanding on this by offering a dedicated service for those who have been subjected to harmful practices, and enhanced support for families who have experienced the most horrific of crimes, murder and manslaughter.”
Victim Care Merseyside was created to enhance the quality, availability and accessibility of support for victims of crime after the Ministry of Justice handed down the responsibility for commissioning support services to PCCs across England and Wales. It is designed to give victims the best possible help to cope and recover from the after effects of crime, ensuring victims get enhanced support from the first moment they report a crime to Merseyside Police right through to the emotional and psychological counselling they may need to help rebuild their lives.
In 2017, the Commissioner took the decision to carry out a Victim Needs Assessment to review the existing Victim Care Merseyside service and see if further improvements could be made.At the centre of this process were the views of victims and survivors, with surveys and focus groups being held to gather their opinions. The views of service providers were also gathered through a series of workshops, including a session on ‘hidden crimes’ to explore what crimes may still be taking place undetected and out of sight. This assessment has informed the services which will make up Victim Care Merseyside over the next three years.
Anyone who has been affected by crime can visit independent website www.VictimCareMerseyside.org for advice, information or to find the best-placed organisations to help them, without speaking to the police.
Today marks the 25th anniversary of the murder of Stephen Lawrence. The thoughts of everyone here at Stop Hate UK are with Doreen and Neville, and all of the Lawrence family.
As the title of last week’s BBC documentary made clear, Stephen’s murder changed a nation. This legacy, and his family’s tireless and dignified fight for justice, truth, and fairness, continues to be an inspiration for all of us and is a beacon of hope for a better future for all our communities.
Stephen may be gone, but he will never be forgotten. He is at the heart of everything we do.
We’re pleased to announce some changes to our West Yorkshire Hate Crime Reporting App.
Although not one of the 5 nationally monitored strands of Hate Crime, Ageism still appears consistently in our own reports and statistics, so the new release of the Stop Hate UK Reporting App now contains Ageism as one of the available selections behind an incident’s motivation.
Also, we’ve enhanced the App so users can be more specific when specifying faith as the motivation for the Hate Crime incident. Now, if faith is selected, there is a supplementary question about the type of faith that was involved; e.g. Christianity, Islam, Buddhism or any other faith.
These two changes will help us to make sure we are gathering more of the relevant information to provide help, support and guidance throughout the reporting and referral process.
A key addition to the new release of our App is that any audio, video or pictures are now automatically stored to your device (which was not possible on the previous version).
This means that once anything that might help in the reporting of an incident, such as a recording of someone saying something offensive or inappropriate, footage relating to an incident or a picture that could be important to taking the report further, would now be stored permanently on your device, until you delete it.
The advantages to this are that, sometimes, it could be that the situation of the incident could mean it is necessary to get away as quickly as possible, which can now be done with the captured images, audio or footage securely available on your device, to refer back to later and complete your report.
Another advantage is anything captured to the device will also be available for any authorities (e.g. the Police) or other organisation to view in their investigations or any other referral processes.
Finally, we’ve upgraded our App so that it’s now compatible with most tablet devices, featuring all the updates mentioned above, so it’s now even easier to access our West Yorkshire Hate Crime Reporting App.
If you already have our App downloaded and installed onto your device, all you need to do is head to your app store and download the updates that are ready and waiting for you!
If you’ve not managed to download our App as yet, don’t worry! Just visit your device’s operating system’s app store, search for ‘Stop Hate UK’ and follow the instructions.
We hope that you find the improvements we’ve made to our App mean it’s a more user friendly and thorough method to report a Hate Crime incident. If you’d like to find out more about the work of Stop Hate UK or our Hate Crime Reporting App, visit our website or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stop Hate UK want to make it clear that we find the recent sending of anti-Muslim letters, to families across the UK, a terrible and abhorrent act.
We are determined in our work to end acts like this and, as such, we have opened up our Hate Crime Helpline to anyone needing help or support in reporting an incident, or anyone that is worried by the recent events and would like advice on the current situation.
If you would like to speak to us about the issue above, or about any aspect of Hate Crime, please call 0800 138 1625 – our trained Helpline operators are here to help you!
Remember, you can also report a Hate Crime incident direct to the police funded website, True Vision (www.report-it.org.uk), call the police non-emergency number on 101 or visit Tell MAMA (www.tellmamauk.org). In an emergency call the police on 999.
I write the first blog of 2018 looking forward to another successful year for Stop Hate UK, packed full of events, initiatives and our continued work to challenge all forms of Hate Crime.
It’s only the middle of February and we’ve already seen 2 successful ‘Hate Crime Awareness Weeks’ in Merseyside and Greater Manchester, where Stop Hate UK played a key role in supporting the many things happening in both areas and there’s so much more to come in 2018!
These weeks also coincided with the launch of our new ‘Spread Love, Not Hate’ campaign.
Our new campaign has been launched in response to the many tragic events, that we witnessed in 2017, but also to remind ourselves of our very own vision statement;
“We dream of a society which is free from hate, harassment and discrimination, where all people are valued for their unique identity.”
When I reference our vision statement, I am also reminded of the great quote from the American poet and civil rights activist, Mary Angelou, that;
“Hate, it has caused a lot of problems in the world, but has not solved one yet.”
So, we think our new campaign to ‘Spread Love, Not Hate’ really resonates with our core values and vision, but also uses language that people can really relate to and get behind.
As part of the campaign, we’ve launched a range of new merchandise, available to buy to show your support and, of course, spread the love! Just visit our online shop to take a look at the new items, together with our existing range of Stop Hate UK products.
We’re really looking forward to 2018 and building on our successes in 2017 and we hope you’ll join us in spreading the love.