This Hate Crime Awareness Week (7-13 February), local children are urging people to stand together against hate crime and build a stronger and kinder Greater Manchester.
Launched as part of Greater Manchester’s Hate Crime Awareness Week, pupils star in an emotive video calling for a kinder world without hate. The video is being shared on social media as part of a week of activity to encourage people to speak out and take action to eradicate hatred and prejudice.
Hate crimes are acts of violence or hostility directed at people because of who they are or who someone thinks they are and can take many different forms.
Local authorities are hosting events during the week, including various virtual sessions and workshops, raising awareness of hate crime and exploring how to tackle it.
Speaking ahead of a virtual launch event which will be attended by partners and those who work in hate crime, Deputy Mayor of Policing and Crime Bev Hughes said: “The events of the last couple of years have seen us all living under restrictions and spending more time at home. This doesn’t mean hate crimes have stopped, instead we’ve seen hate speech move to online platforms, including social media. Whether online or offline, hate crime has a devastating impact on victims and there is no place for it in Greater Manchester.
“We all have a right to live without fear, hostility and intimidation. If you have been a victim of hate crime, help and support is available. Throughout Hate Crime Awareness Week we will be sharing how you can access support and report hate crime. We will continue to build on the partnership work we do with districts, with the aim of eradicating hate crime.”
Hate crimes are crimes committed against someone because of their race, religion, disability, transgender identity or sexual orientation. These are the personal characters currently identified by law, and in Greater Manchester we also record hate crimes against alternative sub-culture.
Chief Superintendent Rick Jackson, Greater Manchester Police’s tactical lead on hate crime, said: “Standing together alongside residents of Greater Manchester, local authorities and our partners such as GMCA, gives us all the best chance of eradicating hate crime, which damages lives and communities, and has no place in modern society.
“The diversity across Greater Manchester is what makes it such a vibrant place to be, and we want everyone – regardless of race, faith, disability or sexual orientation to feel safe and welcome.
“I would like to encourage anyone who is a victim of hate crime to come forward and report it, not only so that they can receive the support they need, but so that those responsible do not go unchallenged. As a force, GMP is consistently the highest performing force in the North West for successful conviction rates for hate cases that reach court. I hope that fact gives victims the confidence to come forward, knowing that they will be taken seriously and treated with respect.”
Councillor Rabnawaz Akbar, Executive Member for Neighbourhoods for Manchester City Council, said: "In a world which has become increasingly divided it is more important than ever to show that hatred in Manchester will be met head on and shown that it has no place in this great city. For decades Manchester has been a place where people of all cultures, genders, races, faiths, sexualities, and identities have found a home, free of prejudice and discrimination. We pride ourselves on this heritage but during times such as Hate Crime Awareness Week we are reminded that acceptance had to be fought for. I hope everyone will be able to join together this week to show the huge commitment to tackling hate crime, promoting cohesion, and celebrating the diversity in our communities."
The Deputy Mayor has also called for misogyny to be made a hate crime and will work with police and other partners to consider how this can be introduced as part of the Gender Based Violence Strategy work. This will ensure that abuse that is aggravated by misogyny is fully investigated with victims offered the same protections as those afforded to all hate crime victims.
Bev continued: “As we have seen in horrific events over the past 12 months, tackling violence against women and girls remains a priority, and the work we are doing in Greater Manchester, as part of the Gender Based Violence Strategy, will focus on men and boys’ behaviour as well as look at how legislation can help protect women and girls.”
For more information on how to access support if you have been a victim of hate crime, and for any resources, please visit: letsendhatecrime.com. You can also follow #WeStandTogether on social media during the week.
Article Published: 07/02/2022 13:58 PM