What is hate?
Click on the video above to find out about hate crime. Read the transcript below.
Transcript: What is hate?
What is hate? We all have the right to feel safe where we live and no one
should be treated badly because of who they are. Hate can make people feel afraid.
In law the word hostility is used to talk about hate. This is about how a person is treated.
A protected characteristic is something about a person that is shared by a group and have been targeted by others because they are different in some way, for example their race.
There are nine of these protected characteristics. Five of these are protected under criminal law and the other four are protected under civil law.
The five protected under criminal law are race, religion or belief, sexual orientation, disability and transgender.
The four protected characteristics under civil law are maternity and pregnancy, sex, age, and marriage and civil partnership.
These are all covered under the Equality Act 2010.
The police and the CPS have agreed the following definitions for identifying and flagging hate crimes or hate incidents.
A hate crime “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 disability, perceived disability, race or perceived race, religion or perceived religion, sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation, or transgender identity or perceived transgender identity”.
A hate incident is defined by “any non-crime incident which is perceived by the victim or any other person to be motivated by hostility or prejudice based on a person’s disability, perceived disability, race or perceived race, religion or perceived religion, sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation, or transgender identity or perceived transgender identity”.
There are key words in this definition we need to understand. Let’s start with perception.
Perception is the ability to see, hear or become aware of something. This
could either be both the victims or anybody else’s ability to identify, recognize, realize, acknowledge, understate, believe or judge that any crime incident or behaviour was attributed to hate.
Anyone can perceive a hate incident or a hate crime. It doesn’t have to be the victim. Help them to recognize what it is and stand up for them.
Next we will look at prejudice.
Prejudice is a preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or experience. It can influence both a person’s behaviour and the words they express. This means that the most important thing you must do is report anything that anyone has said or done that has made you feel upset, angry or has caused harm to you.
If you see it happening to anybody else, report it. Do not be an active bystander.
Some examples you should report are:
- physical assault
- damage to property
- offensive graffiti
- and arson.
Hate crimes can also include:
- threatening or abusive words, pictures or videos
- offensive social media posts
- abusive or obscene telephone calls or text messages
- intimidation by groups
- or unfounded malicious complaints.
If any of this has happened to you because of your race, religious belief or lack thereof, sexual orientation, disability or gender identity, report it.
Remember some disabled people are not able to be immediately identified as being so and have what are known as hidden disabilities.
Once a hate crime has been reported the police will investigate whether a hate crime has been committed.
The police refer hate crime cases to the CPS where they think there is enough evidence for a conviction that is within the public interest
They may not always go to court as there needs to be enough evidence for a court to decide if it is true that a crime has happened.
It is still important that you report what has happened to you as it can be reported as a hate incident by the police so they know what has happened.
If the Crown Prosecution Service or CPS decide if someone should go to court, then the CPS will ask for a bigger sentence it is a hate crime.
Find out more about disability hate crime.