Essex Police support Hate Crime Awareness

Crime / Thu 15th Oct 2020 at 08:22am

Hate Crime Awareness Week #StopTheHate #NHAW

THIS week, Roger Hirst, the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, is championing a campaign to raise awareness of hate crime in all its forms.

The Commissioner is working with Victim Support, the Essex Restorative and Mediation Service, Essex Police, Essex County Fire and Rescue Service and other partners across the county to focus on issues surrounding hate crime as part of National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2020.

Roger Hirst said: “Any crime committed against someone because of their race, religion, race, religion, sex, parental or marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age or disability is totally repugnant and wholly unacceptable in modern society. I encourage all victims of such crimes to report the incident and seek any help they need from one of the various organisations who are able to assist.”

The Essex Restorative and Mediation Service, part of the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner’s Office, is using this week to highlight how the restorative justice process can be used in hate crime incidents.

Service manager Nikki Essex said: “Restorative justice is a process used alongside the criminal justice system, giving victims the chance to have a voice about how a crime has impacted them. It also gives them the opportunity to ask questions and have a real say. For offenders, it allows them to understand the consequences of their actions and make meaningful amends. 

“It has the potential to break down barriers between victims of hate crime and perpetrators and could benefit both sides. It empowers them to have their say, express the impact and educate the offender. Research with more than 3000 victims of hate crime show that, when given a choice between restorative justice with the offender or the offender serving a longer prison sentence, 60 per cent of victims would rather restorative justice.”

As part of a collaboration between Essex Police and Essex County Fire and Rescue Service, the joint education team, teach hate crime awareness in schools. These packages are now available online and can be accessed here: https://www.essex-fire.gov.uk/Home_Fire_Safety/Education_Hub/

Roger added: “Only by working together can we #StopTheHate. Protecting vulnerable people is a key priority for me in my Police and Crime Plan and Fire and Rescue Plan for the county. We must stand together to stamp out hate crime in all its forms and ensure victims feel fully supported.” 

The PFCC supports various organisations across Essex that help victims of Hate Crime and work to prevent it. We have developed the Essex Hate Crime Prevention Strategy in conjunction with Victim Support and the Safer Essex Partnership and commission an Essex Hate Crime Coordinator to assist with delivering the strategy’s aims and monitoring its success.  

The PFCC Community Safety Development Fund also finances the 24-hour Stop Hate helpline service in Essex. 

For more information go to www.victimsupport.org.uk or search Hate Crime at www.essex.police.uk

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