Police issue hate crime plea

Blackpool police issued a plea for those who believe they are victims of hate crimes to speak out.

Thursday, 18th May 2017, 12:23 pm
Updated Sunday, 4th June 2017, 9:33 pm
Blackpool Police have encouraged the reporting of hate incidents

The force used International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia to raise awareness of issues on the Fylde coast.

The day, which was marked yesterday, takes place every year to raise awareness of LGB&T rights and issues.

A police spokesman said: “Lancashire Constabulary values difference and inclusion and during this day we want to raise awareness around the need to recognise and report hate incidents and hate crimes.

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“A hate incident is any incident which the victim, or anyone else, thinks is based on someone’s prejudice towards them because of their race or perceived race, religion or perceived religion, sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation.

“The law also related to disability or perceived disability and any crime motivated by hostility or prejudice against a person who is transgender or perceived to be transgender.

“A hate crime is any criminal offence which is perceived by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by hostility or prejudice based on a person’s race on the same grounds.”

The force made clear it was both easy and important to report such incidents

A spokesman said: “If you have been a victim of a hate incident or hate crime you can report it in a number of ways.

“You can call 101, report the incident through the Lancashire Police website or at www.report-it.org.uk.

“Alternatively ring Lancashire Victim Services on 0300 323 0085.

“In an emergency always ring 999.”

Action taken against hate crime by Lancashire police fell by a third last year despite an increase in reports.

In 2015/16, action was taken on 413 of 2,072 reported hate crimes – or one in five cases.

In 2014/15, action was taken 617 times in relation to 1,936 reports - or 32 per cent