Ahead of National Hate Crime Awareness Week, Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime Bev Hughes has called on communities to stand together once again against hate.
This call for unity comes following publication of figures by Greater Manchester Police which show that there has been a significant increase in reports of hate crimes taking place across Greater Manchester. In the past three years reporting has risen by nearly 55%, from 3,107 reports in January 2014 to 5,639 reports in January 2017.
Increased confidence in services amongst those who have experienced hate to come forward has undoubtedly affected the number of reports we receive. This has been driven by significant work that has been done by police, partner agencies, and communities themselves to encourage victims to report hate. However, events such as the Brexit vote and the aftermath of the terrorist attack at the Manchester Arena saw spikes in hate crime incidents.
Bev said: “Nobody should live in fear about being persecuted for who they are or what they believe. Here in Greater Manchester we take a zero tolerance approach to all forms of hate crime. That’s why we have one of the highest reporting rates of hate crime in the country. But we know it’s just the tip of the iceberg and many, many people who have been subjected to abuse or violence because of who they are still suffer in silence.
“That’s why it’s so important that we have awareness weeks like this. It shines a light on these dreadful crimes, give victims a voice, and shows that Greater Manchester will stand together against hate.
For more information about what police, local councils and other organisations are doing about hate crime in your area, as well as how to report it, visit www.letsendhatecrime.com