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Next steps on tackling hate crime

Published: 13 Jun 2017 15:00

Focus on prevention, raising awareness and improving services

A series of practical measures have been set out to tackle and prevent hate crime in Scotland, focused on tackling prejudice and building stronger communities.

Responding to the recommendations of the Independent Advisory Group on Hate Crime which reported in September, Communities and Equalities Secretary Angela Constance has confirmed:

  • Creating a delivery group of key partners with Ministerial oversight to ensure the advisory group’s recommendations lead to meaningful changes on the ground
  • Work with transport providers and disabled people’s organisations to deliver a hate crime charter for public transport
  • Tackling hate crime in the workplace, focusing on frontline staff, working with the STUC and others to gather evidence
  • A public campaign aiming to prevent hate crime by raising awareness of what hate crime is and how to report it and showing perpetrators the impact of these crimes on victims
  • Adopting the International Holocaust Memorial Trust’s definition of anti-Semitism – driving work to tackle this form of prejudice

Angela Constance said:

“These actions will drive practical measures in the months and years ahead that demonstrate Scotland’s leadership in the fight against hate crime. We are making abundantly clear that there is no place here for intolerance, discrimination or violence.

“We must continue to tackle the underlying causes and conditions that allow hatred and intolerance to flourish. It is vital in these challenging times that we remain united, which is why we are redoubling our efforts to promote fairness, equality and a respect for rights across our society.”

Background notes

Tackling Prejudice and Building Connected Communities - Scottish Government response to the report of the Independent Advisory Group on Hate Crime, Prejudice and Community Cohesion 

An update on progress on implementation of the Advisory Group’s recommendations will be published in 2020.  Remit and membership of the Advisory Group.

An independent review of hate crime legislation by Lord Bracadale is currently underway, which will report in early 2018.

Hate crime is defined in law as a criminal act that is aggravated by prejudice held by the perpetrator in relation to the victim or victims. Prejudice is defined as a preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience. 

Annual hate crime statistics 2016-2016

More than £195 million has been invested since 2007 by the Scottish Government to promote equality and tackle discrimination.

Full statement made by Cabinet Secretary on report made to Scottish Parliament.