Religious Hatred: Christianity

Department for Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 21st February 2017.

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Photo of Baroness Berridge Baroness Berridge Conservative

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for a Christian hate crimes unit, additional to the Jewish and Muslim hate crimes units in the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Photo of Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales, The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government

The Government set out its commitment to reduce the harm caused by all hate crime, including that which is religiously motivated, in ‘Action against hate: the UK government’s plan for tackling hate crime’ which was published in July 2016.

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) does not have specific units for antisemitic or anti–Muslim hate crime. Rather, we support Working Groups to bring members of those communities, where religiously motivated hate crime is at the highest levels, together with Government and other agencies to discuss what more we can do to tackle anti - Semitism and anti-Muslim hate crime. DCLG also supports the cross-Government Hate Crime Programme, which coordinates the response to all forms of hate crime across Whitehall and the Criminal Justice Agencies.

DCLG supports the police website ‘True Vision’ and, in January 2017, the Communities Secretary announced £25,000 extra funding for True Vision to work with Christian Groups, including Churchwatch. The project will assess the nature and extent of anti-Christian hate crime, reassure affected Christians and raise awareness of reporting mechanisms for hate crime. The findings of the research will help inform our future activity to challenge hate crime, which is unacceptable in any community.

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