Report Discrimination / Hate Crime
This page provides you with more information about hate crime and links to Race Equality First's hate crime resources.
Introduction: What is Hate Crime?
A hate crime is defined as any criminal offence perceived by the victim, or anyone else, as being motivated by hostility or prejudice towards people or communities on the basis of their identity.
Another way to put it is to say that hate crime is the targeting of individuals or communities because of who they are.
These are the most commonly recognised forms of hate crime:
Incidents and crimes motivated by the perpetrator's hostility towards disabled people, e.g., because you have a physical or sensory impairment, a learning disability or a mental health condition. Here is an example of disability hate crime.
Incidents and crimes motivated by the perpetrator's hostility towards people or communities because of their race, ethnicity or nationality, e.g., because you are Black, Asian, Polish or come from a Gypsy or Traveller community. Here is an example of a racist hate crime.
Incidents and crimes motivated by the perpetrator's hostility towards people or communities because of their religion, faith or belief system, e.g., because you are Muslim, Sikh, Hindu, Christian or a Humanist. Here is an example of faith based hate crime.
Incidents and crimes motivated by hostility towards people or communities because of their sexual orientation e.g., because you are gay, lesbian or bisexual. Here is an example of homophobic hate crime.
Incidents and crimes motivated by the perpetrator's hostility towards people or communities on the basis of their gender identity, e.g. because you are undergoing gender reassignment, or identify as transgender or gender variant. Here is an example of hate crime on the basis of gender identity.
Did you Know?
The Government is required to record and monitor these five kinds of hate crimes, but you don't have to be from any of these groups to report hate incidents and crimes. Sometimes hate crimes happen that don't fit the above categories as, for example, in the case of Sophie Lancaster who was murdered because she belonged to an alternative subculture.
If you feel you've been targeted because of your identity, or are aware of someone else being targeted, then you should report it.
What sort of incidents and crimes do victims experience?
Remember, hate incidents and crimes are defined by the perception of the victim (or a witness) and the motivation of the perpetrator, NOT by the type of offence committed. This means that hate incidents and crimes can involve a very wide range of incidents, including:
- Antisocial behaviour (ASB)
- Verbal abuse
- Abusive gestures
- Vandalism and property damage
- Cyberbullying and online hate, e.g., abuse posted on Facebook and twitter
- Maliicious communications, e.g., letters, leaflets, emails
- "Mate crime", e.g., being exploited or abused by "false friends"
- Sexual assault and rape
All these offences can be hate crimes if they are motivated by the perpetrator's hostility towards the victim's identity.
The impact of hate crime on the lives of the victims can be very severe, even leading in some cases to suicide, as shown in the tragic case of Fiona Pilkington and Frannecca Hardwicke.
How many hate crimes take place in Wales?
We don't know the full extent of hate crime in Wales. According to the most recent Home Office figures, there were 43,748 recorded hate crimes in England and Wales in 2011-12 with 1,809 being recorded in Wales. You can download a breakdown of the data for Wales from our downloads section. Hate crime is significantly underreproted, so it's important to be aware that the figures are probably the "tip of the iceberg".
Have you been affected by hate crime? Please go to our reporting pages.