New look Centres encourage Hate Crime Victims to report Incidents
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.
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 want to encourage victims to report hate crimes or incidents.
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
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.”
Re-branding for Third Party Reporting Centres
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.
“The group brings together criminal justice and community safety partners 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. You can now report hate crime at Microsoft Word – hatecrimereorting (stockton.gov.uk)”
Community Safety Chief Inspector Scott Cowie said: “Cleveland Police takes all reports of hate crime extremely seriously. 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.”
Increased Focus on Hate Crime
Hate Crime Awareness Week raises awareness of the harm caused by hate crime. It also highlights the support available to victims.
In recent years, the OPCC and Cleveland Police have given hate crime an increased focus.
Dedicated Hate Crime Investigators have been funded by the OPCC to improve prosecution rates. Additional staff have also been brought into the Cleveland Police Community Engagement Team. This is 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. They include 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.
If you have been a victim of hate crime, you can get 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 [email protected]