Posted on: Monday 12 October 2020
This week marks Hate Crime Awareness week, a national week of action that encourages local authorities, key partners and communities affected by hate crime to work together to tackle local hate crime issues.
Hate crime is the term used to describe an incident or crime against someone based on a part of their identity. There are five categories of ‘identity’ when a person is targeted because of a hostility or prejudice towards their:
- race or ethnicity
- religion or belief (which includes non-belief)
- sexual orientation
- Gender identity
Hate crime awareness week is more than just defining what a hate crime is and how to report it; it gives us all an opportunity to support and welcome people who may feel they are being targeted or discriminated against just because they are different to the majority.
West Gwent Community Cohesion officers have been working with schools to showcase how they celebrate diversity and stand up to hate crime.
Schools across Wales have taken part in an anti-racism poster competition organised by race equality first. The schools produced some amazing art work which shows the spirit of unity and kindness that can make communities stronger.
Mike Morgan, West Gwent Community Cohesion Officer said ‘The schools have produced some fantastic pieces of art work this year and it was important for us to share their work more widely. I have walked through the corridors of the primary schools and its nothing but messages of positivity, growth, love and compassion.
It goes to show that we are not born to hate and that educating young people about celebrating difference and respecting people for who they are is a preventative intervention to keep hate crime out of our communities. Wales is a welcoming nation and we have always been at our strongest when we are most united.’
Torfaen Council Leader, Cllr Anthony Hunt said, ‘Hate crime has no place in our communities, so it’s great to see the work schools have produced to demonstrate this.
It’s important that these topics are discussed in schools so that pupils are aware that all forms of hate crime are unacceptable and that everyone has the right to feel safe and have a sense of belonging in their community.‘
Victims or witnesses of hate crime can report directly to the police. If it’s an emergency call 999 or 101 for any non-emergency or you can report to victims support at any time by calling 0300 3031 982.