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New look centres encourage hate crime victims to report incidents

237424 - TPRC Poster 4 red.white

New look reporting centres have been launched across Cleveland to encourage more victims to report hate crime.

National Hate Crime Awareness Week (10 – 17 October 2020) is being used to launch new branding for Third Party Reporting Centres across Cleveland.

The centres are community locations where people can report hate crime if they feel worried about going directly to the police.

Cleveland Police, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) for Cleveland and community safety partners across Cleveland want to encourage residents to report any hate crimes or incidents, which they have experienced.

The new logo can be seen in the reporting form and in windows and posters at all Third Party Reporting Centres across Cleveland.

A full updated list of Cleveland’s Third Party Reporting Centres has been added to the OPCC website at https://www.cleveland.pcc.police.uk/Victim-Services/Hate-Crime-and-How-to-Report-It.aspx

Lisa Oldroyd, Acting Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland, said: “We know that hate crime has a massive impact on victims. It is a direct attack on identity and can be very difficult to report.

“There are a minority of individuals who think it is acceptable to target some-one because of their race, religion, sexual orientation, disability or gender identity.

“The focus of Third Party Reporting Centres is on using community venues where people feel comfortable and supported in reporting this very personal crime.

“We hope that by re-branding these centres, we can encourage more victims to come forward and receive the help and support which they need and deserve.”

Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Community Protection Team led the re-branding project.

The Council’s Cabinet Member for Access, Communities and Community Safety, Councillor Steve Nelson, said: “It was important to have the re-branded centres up and running for National Hate Crime Awareness Week – particularly as there are issues around the under-reporting of hate crime – and I’d like to thank everyone involved.

“This has been achieved through a concerted push over the last couple of weeks by the Cleveland Strategic Hate Crime and Incidents Group, which brings criminal justice and community safety partners together to raise awareness of hate crime, improve investigations and improve support for victims.

“We’ve also been working towards having full online digital reporting capability through the Council’s website and you can now report hate crime at www.stockton.gov.uk/hatecrime.”

Community Safety Chief Inspector Scott Cowie said: “Cleveland Police takes all reports of hate crime extremely seriously and we have dedicated Hate Crime Investigators who thoroughly investigate these reports.

“Third party reporting centres are a fantastic way to encourage anyone who does not wish to directly approach police to report a hate crime and get any help and support which victims may wish to access.”

Hate Crime Awareness Week raises awareness of the harm caused by hate crime as well as the support available to victims.

In recent years hate crime has been given an increased focus by OPCC and Cleveland Police. Dedicated Hate Crime Investigators have been funded by the OPCC to improve prosecution rates and additional staff have also been brought into the Cleveland Police Community Engagement Team to increase engagement with communities across Cleveland and build trust between the police and vulnerable groups.

A wide range of activities will be taking place throughout the week including awareness-raising sessions with school children delivered by OPCC-funded School Liaison Officers and Covid-secure engagement events organised by the Cleveland Police Community Engagement Team.

In Cleveland, residents can report incidents directly to the police on 101, 999 for emergencies or through the Cleveland Police website www.cleveland.police.uk.

If you have been a victim of hate crime you can receive free and confidential support through the OPCC funded Victim Care and Advice Service, even if you have not reported the crime. Ring 0303 040 1099 or email info@vcas.uk

 

Posted on Monday 12th October 2020
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