This week marks Hate Crime week, a time which reminds the country that it is an offence to target people for hatred for their social group.
In Scotland, a hate crime is ‘any crime which is perceived by the victim or any other person to be motivated (wholly or partly) by malice and ill-will towards a social group’.
Chief inspector, Graham Binnie, says: “It means that anyone can be a victim of hate crime at any time and hate crime can happen in many different ways.”
Mr Binnie explains that there is a variety of ways in which a hate crime can be committed against someone, for instance he says it verbal abuse such as shouting and swearing at a person, or physically assaulting someone.
He also says that graffiti and online abuse is counted as a hate crime and is encouraging anyone to come forward of any instances they might be aware of.
The chief inspector stresses: “Also if you witness such behaviour being inflicted on another person then you should also feel confident to contact the Police; you don’t need to be the victim to report a hate crime.”
Hate crime’s in Scotland can be committed against anyone with a background involving Disability, Race, Religion/Belief, Sexual Orientation and Transgender Identity.
In particular, Mr Binnie highlights that there are 13 hate crimes reported in Scotland every day and between 2018-2019 sexual orientation amounted for a quarter of all reports of a hate crime.
He also emphasises that the figures show that disabled children are almost four times more likely to experience violence than non-disabled children.
Mr Binnie adds: “Police Scotland takes hate crime very seriously and will do everything we can to bring those responsible to justice; we can try to prevent the same thing happening to someone else and together we can work to rid Scotland of hate.”
For more information, follow the link to: https://onescotland.org/campaigns/hate-crime-campaign/