When Mark Burns-Williamson took up his position as West Yorkshire Police Commissioner he set up a ‘Listening to You First’ survey.
The results of that were disturbing.
They showed that those who felt threatened or had been attacked were more likely to be – female, disabled, Gay or Lesbian, Muslim or from an ethnic minority background.
So it’s no surprise that Mark joined Leeds Councillors this week to launch a ‘Leeds Challenges Hate’ Charter.
Leeds Challenges Hate aims to stop Hate crimes – and to tackle Hate incidents – which all too easily escalate into Hate crimes.
A Hate incident is
‘Any behaviour that you feel is motivated by prejudice can be hate incidents. This can include name calling, mocking, bullying, intimidation and threats. A hate incident is any behaviour which is perceived by the victim or any other person to be motivated by a hostility or prejudice based upon:
Race or Ethnicity
Religion or Faith
The Charter aims to increase awareness of Hate Crimes and Incidents – among everyone – and to build the confidence of victims so that they report them.
So if you’re the victim of a Hate incident – or if you know anyone who is –
– To West Yorkshire Police, by ringing 101
– To Stop Hate UK, using their freephone – 24 hour helpline 0800 1381625
– Or online http://www.stophateuk.org/talk-to-us/
There are also Hate Incident Reporting Centres – including in the City Centre at the City One Stop Centre on Great George St, and at the advice centres of both University Student Unions.
You can find a list of all the centres and specialist helplines – e.g. for anti-Jewish and anti-Muslim hate Incidents HERE.
‘Hate Incident Reporting Centres are safe locations where anyone who has witnessed or been a victim of a hate incident can make a report. You are in control. You choose how you want us to handle the information.’
The Charter – like Safer Leeds of which it is part – wants Leeds to be
‘ a city where people are able to recognise, value and embrace diversity and difference.’
We heartily endorse that.