Stirring up hatred and online hate crime
There are stirring up offences which make it a crime to do things to stir up hate against a group of people because of who they are.
Stirring up offences are sometimes called "hate speech".
They include things like writing or saying threatening things about a whole group of people (for example someone of a different race).
At the moment stirring up offences apply to race and religion.
There are not many prosecutions for stirring up offences in Scotland.
The low number could mean that hate speech is not a problem or that the law has worked so that people know that hate speech is wrong.
It could be that the type of behaviour which stirs up hatred in society would already be covered by the existing statutory aggravations.
If we criminalise the stirring up of hatred it could stifle debate and mean that people feel that they should not express their opinions.
For example, about religious practices or certain sexual behaviour.
Should there be offences that cover stirring up of hatred against groups other than for race and religion?
Yes / No
Please tell us why and what groups?
Email: Independent review of hate crime legislation - secretariat, firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit
The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House