Letters of Solidarity and Support will be added here in due course.
Leader of the Opposition
Northern Ireland Assembly
First Minister of Wales
Dear Mr Healey.
I am writing to add my support to this year’s Hate Crime Awareness Week.
The Welsh Government remains committed to tackling all forms of hostility and prejudice. Hate crimes and incidents have a devastating impact on the lives of people and we will continue to implement our cross Government Tackling Hate Crime Framework to support a zero tolerance approach. This includes funding for our National Hate Crime Report and Support Centre.
Clearly these are challenging times. World events have continued to test our resolve and it is important that we remain resilient and united in our resolve. Since the EU referendum, it has been worrying to see the number of incidents of racist hate crime and abuse directed against both non-British people and people from ethnic minorities born here in Wales or elsewhere in the UK. As a government, we have made it clear that absolutely nothing has changed in the status of foreign nationals living and working in Wales. They remain welcome as they always have been – before devolution before the EU. Wales has always been a welcoming country and we must not lose sight of that. It is incumbent on all of us to stand up to anybody who thinks they now have licence to abuse people of different races or nationalities. They have no such licence and should anyone suffer from this sort of abuse, they should report it to the police immediately.
For Hate Crime Awareness Week this year we are working closely with the Police and Crime Commissioners across Wales to challenge people to think about the impact of underlying prejudices. This will be supported through a media campaign and we will also continue to encourage communities across Wales to report through a range of workshops, stalls and awareness which will be taking place.
My final message is of hope. Together we are stronger and it is important that we continue to break down any perceived barriers to inclusion or equality. Ultimately we are all judged by the actions which we take or do, regardless of our faith, race or any other protected characteristic. Everybody deserves to feel safe and be treated with respect and dignity.
House of Lords
I write to support National Hate Crime Awareness Week, which raises awareness of the damage that hate crime can cause, not just to individual victims but to whole communities.
We live in difficult times and it’s even more important that every person, no matter their background, age, gender, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, beliefs or ethnicity, should be allowed to live their lives free of the fear of being abused or attacked because of who they are. It’s not only a human right, it also makes our society function better. Our towns, cities and countryside are happier, more secure places when we accept and enjoy diversity.
We all have to take responsibility. Communities are already working in partnership to combat hate crime and support those who have been targeted. But as individuals we must take action too and be positive about the value that those differences bring to our lives.
Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb
Mayor of Sutton
All people of goodwill must stand together, in these difficult times, against hate crime.
No-one in our society should be threatened, targeted, attacked or abused for being who they are. Crimes of hatred are an evil cancer in our society and every individual and organisation must resolve to do all we can to demonstrate our opposition.
Councillor Richard Clifton, Mayor of Sutton
Police and Crime Commissioners
Avon & Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner
I welcome National Hate Crime Awareness Week as an opportunity to talk about hate crime, the impact it has on people’s lives and what more we can all be doing to prevent it from happening in the first place. It also enables us all to reach out to victims of this terrible crime and let them know that they are not alone, there are people who can help.
I fully support the work being done by organisations such as 17-24-30 and their efforts to raise awareness of such a destructive crime. It is only by standing together, can we truly tackle hate crime. Our message is clear – perpetrators who affect communities with their hatred and vitriol are not welcome and will not be tolerated.
Hate crime is motivated by prejudice towards any aspect of an individual’s identity such as a disability, sexuality, race or religion. In 2015, 423 hate crimes were reported in Avon and Somerset and the majority of these were racially motivated, while others were homophobic, faith and disability related.
Following the results of the EU Referendum there has also been a worrying increase in hate crime nationally, including in Avon and Somerset. Let’s be clear, the result of the Referendum did not legitimise hatred and racism. There are no excuses for this behaviour and as local communities we must stand together united against hate crime.
As communities, if we see this behaviour we must challenge it and report it. We must help give victims of hate crime the confidence to speak to the police or partner agencies about their experience. There are some fantastic organisations offering support to victims of hate crime and locally I have commissioned an adults’ advocacy service – AVoice.
I believe we must take pride in the rich, multi-cultural and beautifully diverse communities we live in, taking every opportunity to learn more about one another’s cultures, traditions and livelihoods. Celebrating inclusivity has been the focus of past hate crime awareness weeks in Avon and Somerset using #celebratenothate to share people’s positive stories.
As individuals, I believe our differences should be celebrated; it’s our uniqueness that makes each and every one of us who we are. Being targeted because of your age, race, sexual orientation, religion or any other reason is unacceptable.
We all have a right to live in a society free from fear of hate.
Cambridgeshire Police and Crime Commissioner
Dear Mr Healey
Many thanks for your email dated 16th September and please accept this as my letter of support for National Hate Crime Awareness Week.
It has been disappointing to see an increase in the reporting of hate crime both nationally and locally following the outcome of the EU Referendum, however, I have been pleased at the way the Constabulary has responded immediately, engaging with affected communities and providing increased support.
Practical and positive steps have been taken to encourage both victims and witnesses of hate crime to report incidents. Communities need to be safe in the knowledge that they will be taken seriously and that issues will be investigated thoroughly.
Although we are now seeing levels return to those formerly experienced before Brexit, the Constabulary will continue to work closely with local groups, holding further talks with community leaders, and will continue to reassure communities that appropriate actions are being taken.
Both my office and the Constabulary are working hard to put together events during National Hate Crime Awareness Week. This will be in the form of Police contact points in high footfall areas with a hate crime awareness theme. Each area of Cambridgeshire will have their own contact point and we aim to not only raise awareness but also ensure that if someone is the victim of a hate crime, they know how to report the crime and that their report will be taken seriously.
Cambridgeshire Police and Crime Commissioner
Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner
Dear Mr Healey
I am proud to be supporting Hate Crime Awareness Week.
Hate Crime Awareness Week is a good opportunity to talk about hate crime. I want to be clear that in Cumbria hate crime is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
I hear from victims the long-lasting effect hate crime has on their lives. They often suffer in silence for too long and there is simply no excuse for someone to be subjected to such abuse and crimes. My commitment is that I want to encourage people to come forward and I know sometimes how difficult it will be in some circumstances to report crime.
The pace of change within society is moving quickly and it is essential that we all embrace the change happening within our communities and across policing. One of the ways to reduce crime is to stop it happening in the first place. In Cumbria, we are launching a drama production to go into secondary schools focusing on what is hate crime and why it is not acceptable. This proactive approach is being supported by multi-agency training, educational support programme to offenders of hate crime to work towards reducing re-offending, engagement at a community level to give people a voice.
I am a great believer in ‘we, not they’. It is only by us all working together that we will make a difference and stop hate crime.
Cumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner
Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner /Dorset Police
Dear Mr Healey
We are writing to confirm our commitment to the national Hate Crime Awareness Week. As a Force, we recognise the detrimental impact that harassment, prejudice and targeted hostility has on individuals and the wider community.
Hate crime can take many forms and all forms of hate crime are unacceptable in any circumstances. Hatred not only has the potential to cause serious physical and emotional harm, it damages communities and undermines the diversity and cohesion we should instead be celebrating.
We have in place our equality strategy which sets out how the Force understands who it serves, where those people and communities are, what are their needs and expectations and how services are designed and monitored. The strategy also sets out how the Force understands the workforce, who and where our staff are and their needs and expectations of Dorset Police as an employer which links to our positive action strategy to encourage representation from under-represented groups.
On Saturday 9 July, Dorset Police took part in Bourne Free at which a police car specially decorated for the event and arranged by the Office of the Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner was launched. Officers and staff walked in the parade alongside the branded vehicle which has been specifically decorated with rainbows and stars to celebrate Pride. The PCC is also a trustee of Bourne Free having been involved with the event since 2010.
Both Dorset Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner had information stands; sharing community safety information and asking for resident’s views on policing. Dorset Police is working to build increased confidence among the LGBT community.
On Saturday 6 August, Dorset Police took part in the Dorset One World Festival in Dorchester, joining in the celebrations that brought people of all cultures together. It provided an opportunity for officers to get a feel for issues facing local communities.
Officers from the Dorchester Neighbourhood Policing Team and three Equality Champions joined in the festivities as part of the Force’s ongoing effort to demonstrate that hate crime will never be tolerated and victims of crime will be supported.
Officers raised awareness of hate crime reporting options available to any victims, including the pioneering Hate Crime App, which helps the most vulnerable members of society to report in the moment and in the privacy of their own safe environment.
We have also founded Prejudice Free Dorset, a partnership organisation that seeks to promote inclusive communities across Dorset. Prejudice Free Dorset working in partnership with Dorset Police, will provide a victim focussed response to any incidents reported. Tackling hate crime is a priority and we continue to work with our communities to stamp it out.
Our joint efforts include educating the public on how prejudice affects individuals and communities, encouraging victims and witnesses to report hate crime, signposting to support networks for victims of hate crime and providing third party reporting centres.
Hate crime has always been under-reported. We are working to build the confidence of all communities to come forward and report hate incidents and crimes. With recent media coverage, national and international events raising the profile of hate crime, we want to encourage victims to come forward in confidence. We seek to bring perpetrators to justice wherever possible.
Prejudice Free Dorset will be holding a Hate Crime Conference on 10 October during Hate Crime Awareness Week to consider the government’s new hate crime action plan with our communities and agree our action plan for the coming year in relation to preventing and responding to hate crime, increasing reporting, improving support for victims and building understanding. Yours sincerely
James Vaughan Deputy Chief Constable & Martyn Underhill Police & Crime Commissioner
Durham Police and Crime Commissioner
Dear Mark Healey,
I would like, once again, to support the work of the ’17-24-30- No to Hate Crime Campaign’ and Stop Hate UK for their efforts in facilitating and promoting Hate Crime Awareness Week.
National Hate Crime Awareness Week is not just a day to celebrate the giant leaps and baby steps which have been achieved so far, but to call on all of us to continue our commitment
A time has come to chat out a future where those gains are protected, nurtured and used as a catapult for our vision; a safe and enabling environment for all individuals and communities.
This isn’t going to be a one person or one organisation led movement. Together, we can work towards a country where there will be zero violent assaults, misinformation and any form of phobia towards a person’s identity.
Absolutely no one should be victimised because they have a different faith, gender, disability or sexuality. Every person-no matter who they are or what they look like or what gender they identify as, deserves to be valued and loved for who they are. It is very encouraging to see so many people speak out against Hate Crime and support National Hate Crime Awareness Week.
All 3 North East PCCs have a shared commitment to tackle Hate Crime issues, by raising awareness of what Hate Crime is and how to respond to it, encourage reporting, and promote local support services and resources. Our police forces are dedicated to tackling Hate Crime, to better serve people who have been a victim of Hate Crime, to end this type of crime.
However, I recognise that there is still much to do to confront Hate Crime and tackle the scale of under-reporting. Many victims are still reluctant to report incidents to the police.
For these reasons, I am determined to do more to support vulnerable people and victims of Hate Crime. Reducing the impact of Hate Crime remains a priority and features in the refreshed Police, Crime and Victims’ Plan. I want to reduce the incidence of Hate Crime and increase confidence for individuals to report these appalling crimes, instead of suffering in silence.
My ambition is to make services for victims in County Durham and Darlington the best in the country. I believe that every victim of crime should benefit from the best possible service according to their needs and this can only be done by continuously improving the quality of the response and support available.
It is vital that we continue to work closely with partners and the voluntary sector organisations to share the knowledge and the ability to improve the service to all those who have been a victim of hate crime, and as such, I encourage people to come forward to report Hate Crime.
Ron Hogg (standing on the left)
I am pleased to pledge my support for National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2016.
We Stand Together with the diverse communities of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland tackling hate crime and encouraging reporting and engagement every day. Throughout #NHCAW we will be continuing our work to increase reporting and awareness of hate crime and support available to victims. We will also be holding Police Liaison Officer of the Deaf (PLOD) awareness raising event.
Simon Cole QPM Chief Constable
Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner
Dear Mr Healey
RE: Hate Crime Awareness Week 2016
Hate crime is completely unacceptable in any form and against any person. I am a strong believer in fairness and for people to be able to live in society without feeling or being treated differently for any reason.
I am supporting local work in collaboration with partners to try to encourage reporting of hate crimes, to provide better support to victims and to educate people on hate crime.
I would like to show my support to National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2016 taking place in October and would encourage others to participate.
I am supporting local activity across Warwickshire during the week and will continue to work throughout the year to tackle this crime type.
Phillip Seccombe, TD Police and Crime Commissioner
West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner
Dear Mr Healey,
National Hate Crime Awareness Week – along with your other sterling work at 17-24-30 gets my wholehearted support.
I work in the diverse and dynamic West Midlands, an area that understands the importance of mutual respect and strength in unity. This year’s NHCAW theme of Standing Together therefore strikes a chord with me.
Hate crime is a corrosive practice: one that has no place in modern society. Anything that promotes awareness, tolerance and respect should therefore be celebrated and this is the reason I am supporting National Hate Crime Awareness Week.
Keep up the good work,
West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner
Dear Mr Healey
As West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner tackling hate crime and supporting victims is an absolute priority.
Organisations such as 17-24-30 and the National Hate Crime Awareness Week play a crucial role in tackling hate and they have my full support.
Recent local, national and international events have impacted upon our communities, but I want to offer reassurance that myself, West Yorkshire Police and our partners are fully committed to working together to tackle these issues head on.
We have an ongoing awareness raising campaign “Hate Hurts. Report it, Sort it, Say No to Hate Crime” which will be re-launched during hate crime awareness week. At the very heart of that campaign is the message that: Everyone has a right to feel safe and no one should ever be a victim of hate crime because of their disability, gender, identity, race, religion, sexual orientation or because of how they choose to dress.
I have also been supporting many local projects to deliver support to victims of hate crime and better understand the impact of hate crime and hate incidents on individuals and communities through projects funded by my ongoing Safer Communities Fund and my recent extraordinary Hate Crime grant round which was funded by Ministry of Justice Victims Support Services Fund.
I want to stress that there is no place in West Yorkshire for those who foster any kind of hatred and intolerance, a view which I know is held by the vast majority of our diverse communities. I encourage anyone affected to come forward and report it. We take every report seriously and investigate thoroughly, putting appropriate support in place for any victims.
To find out more about our work to tackle hate crime and the support available to victims visit https://www.westyorkshire-pcc.gov.uk/get-involved/campaigns/hate-crime.aspx.
We all need to work together to send out a strong and clear message that hate is unacceptable, will not be tolerated and any victims who come forward will be fully supported.
West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner
Stop Hate UK
Stop Hate UK is proud to support National Hate Crime Awareness Week
National Hate Crime Awareness Week
Saturday 8th-Saturday 15th October 2016
Stop Hate UK are once again proud to be working in partnership with the charity, 17-24-30, to coordinate and promote National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2016.
17-24-30 was set up in 2009 by Mark Healey and Ryan Parkins following the London bombings in 1999 so that we would never forget the 139 people who were killed or injured. National Hate Crime Awareness Week has since become a focus each year for individuals and organisations, large and small, to show their commitment to stopping hate.
The week begins on Saturday 8th October with a service of Hope and Remembrance at St. Paul’s Cathedral, to remember all those who have lost their lives because of Hate Crime and all those who have been affected by it. (Click here for the full launch event information)
During the week various events and initiatives will be held throughout the country by charitable and voluntary organisations, statutory agencies such as the police, police and crime commissioners, local authorities – and many others. Through information stalls, campaigns and social media these agencies will be working together to raise awareness about the different ways to report Hate Crime and the support services that exist to help those who are affected. You can see the Guide to holding your own event by clicking here
Rose Simkins, Chief Executive of Stop Hate UK said:
“National Hate Crime Awareness Week is always a wonderful event, as it sees so many organisations working together to raise awareness about Hate Crime. Hate Crime across all monitored strands – disability, faith, gender identity, race and sexual orientation is a much under-reported crime. It’s important that we all continue to work together to ensure that those people who have been impacted by Hate Crime know where and how they can access support and the different options available to them. We want to see all perpetrators brought to justice and our communities made safer.”
Stop Hate UK and 17-24-30 have released a joint press release, which you can read by clicking here.
We hope as many people as possible participate in National Hate Crime Awareness Week. Keby looking for #NHCAW right across social media.
Disability Hate Crime Network
National Hate Crime Awareness Week
Hate in our country and society is a dreadful, daily constant, and it is vitally important to recognise the damage done to victims of this insidious and under-reported crime.
National Hate Crime Awareness week is a time when we can, and must all join together and endorse the aims of reducing all hate crime against anyone whoever they are of from whatever background they come.
In our network we see that In the face of hatred, apathy can be interpreted as acceptance — by the perpetrators, the public and, worst of all, by the victims. National Hate Crime week reminds victims that all over the country people are fighting hate, and are standing up to promote tolerance and inclusion.
We all grow up with prejudices. Acknowledging them – and working through them – can be a scary and difficult process. It’s also one of the most important steps toward breaking down the walls of silence that allow intolerance to grow. Luckily, we all possess the power to overcome our ignorance and fear, and to influence our children, peers and communities.
We must unite and take action; if we don’t, hate persists. Victims of hate crimes feel terribly alone and afraid. They have been attacked simply for being who they are — their disability, their faith, their ethnicity, their sexual orientation. Silence amplifies isolation; it also tacitly condones the act of hate. Victims need a strong, quick message that they are valued.
More often than not, when hate flares up, good people rise up against it — often in greater numbers and with stronger voices. There is power in numbers in the fight against hate. We must work together to create a healthy relationship with local police; CPS and all agencies, human rights groups and CJS officials for a unified response.
National Hate Crime Awareness week is a time of reflection, but it is also a reminder that we fight the battle for all the other weeks of the year. While we at the Disability Hate Crime Network are not logistically able to create an event for National Hate Crime Awareness Week, each of us will be involved in some way in either local or national events.
We endorse the aims of reducing all hate crime against anyone whoever they are of from whatever background they come.
Stephen Brookes MBE
Coordinator Disability Hate Crime Network
Disability Rights UK
In a recent BBC broadcast I said ‘disability hate crime is, often, still something which goes unreported and unnoticed. This can be because disabled people don’t think their account will be taken seriously or due to a distrust of the system. When times are harder people often become more intolerant and pick on those who are different’.
Attacks on disabled people seem to be increasing – partly because of improved reporting rates, which is a positive testimony to the work of some police forces and prosecutors, and partly because sadly we live in an era in which intolerance still thrives. More positively, prosecutions are increasing – but still we see clear cases of crimes motivated by hate not categorised as such. We need sustained action by police, CPS and the courts’.
National Hate Crime Awareness week is a time for us all to reflect on our part in reducing this abominable crime and is a time when we can unite to say that attacks on anyone because of their being perceived as being different is not to be tolerated.
We commend the work being done by Mark Healey and the 17 24 30 campaign and will continue to press for the rights of individuals to live without fear of attack.
Liz Sayce CEO Disability Rights UK.
I am pleased to commit Galop’s continued support to National Hate Crime Awareness Week. Events like this provide a valuable opportunity to share the knowledge and learning from our direct client work combatting homophobia, biphobia and transphobia to ensure the needs of LGBT victims of hate crime are heard and responded to. We are in fact taking the opportunity to launch the second edition of the Galop Hate Crime Report during NHCAW.
Galop’s 2016 Hate Crime report provides an in-depth examination of hate crime against LGBT people. It finds that despite huge progress on this issue, 4 in 5 LGBT people have experienced hate crime. It also highlights that victims still face considerable barriers to accessing assistance in terms of policy, practice and legislation. Whilst the UK remains a world leader in it’s response to Hate Crime, it evidences we still have more to do. I welcome NHCAW’s support in highlighting key findings and the recommendations that the report makes.
The study is the product of a pan-European collaboration, funded by the EU with European partner organisations combatting hate crime. The importance of this work, at this time in particular cannot be understated, following the Brexit vote there was a 147% rise in the use of our hate crime casework service.
In this context it has never been more important that communities stand strong together in solidarity against hate crime of all types and Galop is extremely honoured to co-ordinate the Community Alliance to Combat Hate (CATCH). It is an intersectional partnership initiative, launched in April this year, which is the first project of its kind to establish a partnership of the leading specialist community hate crime organisations.
Thank you for your continued hard work in co-ordinating NHCAW.
Galop Chief Executive