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Hate Crime

Home Office written question – answered on 31st October 2019.

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Photo of Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth Conservative

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have (1) to encourage the reporting of hate crime, and (2) to achieve successful prosecutions for hate crime.

Photo of Baroness Williams of Trafford Baroness Williams of Trafford The Minister of State, Home Department, Minister for Equalities (Department for International Development)

Police recorded hate crime has more than doubled over the period 2012/13 to 2018/19, with 103,379 hate crimes being recorded in 2018/19- an increase of 10 per cent compared with 2017/2018 (94,121 offences). This increase is thought to be driven largely by improvements in police recording practices, as well as better identification of hate crimes, willingness of victims to come forward, and a genuine increase in these offences around certain events. Better recording is an important part of how to tackle hate crime and support victims.

However, this Government recognises that there is no room for complacency given the impact of hate crimes on victims, their families and wider communities. The Hate Crime Action Plan refresh published in October 2018 sets out a comprehensive plan for tackling the issue. This includes work under 5 key themes: preventing hate crime by challenging beliefs and attitudes; responding to hate crime within our communities; increasing the reporting of hate crime; improving support for victims of hate crime; and building our understanding of hate crime.

A number of steps have been taken to improve the effectiveness of prosecutions. The CPS has delivered mandatory face to face training for prosecutors and conducts assurance checks on hate crime cases to ensure they are dealt with effectively. The CPS Hate Crime Annual Report shows that the conviction rate for hate crime prosecutions remains steady at 84.3% and the proportion of cases where the CPS was successful in achieving uplifted sentences increased from 67.1% in 2017-18, to 73.6% in 2018-19.

Work includes supporting reporting mechanisms such as the police reporting portal TrueVision, the online hate crime hub and third party reporting centres like Tell MAMA as well as improving general understanding of hate crime through activities like the public awareness campaign.

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