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Hate Crime – it’s not just offensive, it’s an offence

With North Yorkshire police

Hate crime is a crime that is committed against a person because of their race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender or disability.

Hate crime takes many forms. For example, it could be a person committing a verbal, physical or sexual assault against you, or someone making threats of violence towards you or damaging your property – because of your race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender or because you have a disability.

Hate crime can happen anywhere. It can happen at home, when you are on public transport, at work, when you are out socially or even online.

How to report hate crime

You should always report all incidents of hate to the police.

For example if someone has shouted a name at you, or made an offensive gesture towards you or committed a more serious crime towards you, such as damaging your property or physically assaulting you and you believe that it is because of your race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or disability, you should tell the police.

If it’s an emergency and you are in immediate danger, always dial 999.

Otherwise, please contact North Yorkshire Police on 101 and make a report.

We want to know about all incidents of hate and we will always follow up and investigate your report.

It may sound obvious, but for a report of hate to be recorded as a crime, a law must have been broken and a crime must have been committed. If this is the case, and we have enough evidence to satisfy the Crown Prosecution Service, we will always look to support a prosecution.

If following investigation, the result is that a law has not been broken, a crime has not been committed, and a prosecution cannot be pursued, we will record your report as a hate incident and you will still be offered support.

We understand that not being able to pursue a prosecution is disappointing to victims of hate and we recognise the upsetting experience they have been through. However, it is important to report and record hate incidents, as it help us to understand and build a picture of intelligence, which will inform our local policing resourcing decisions.

For example, if we know through reports of hate that there is a local ‘hot-spot’ where incidents are happening, we can change our patrols routes to ensure our officers and PCSOs are visible in the area.

Reporting all incidents hate to the police also means that we can engage with support services, and ensure you can get access to the help and advice you may need, to help you move past the experience.

Click here to download a copy of an Easy-Read guide to hate crime

Prosecuting hate crimes

When a hate crime has taken place and police can prove that it has been motivated by hate, at conviction, the courts can take extra action and apply an uplift to the perpetrators sentence.

This means that in some circumstances they can apply extra terms to their sentence. In serious cases when a prison conviction is given, the courts can lengthen that prison sentence, because the crime has been motivated by hate.

Below are some examples of cases dealt with by North Yorkshire Police, where uplifts have been applied to the sentence:

Don’t want to report to the police? Help is still available

Please be reassured that we take all reports of hate very seriously and we would always recommend that you speak to the police in the first instance.

However, we recognise that not everyone feels comfortable contacting the police, so there are other places where you can report to and get help, advice and support from.

Below is a list of just a few charities and organisations who can help you;

Supporting Victims in North Yorkshiresupportingvictims.org

Supporting Victims in North Yorkshire can provide support for anyone affected by crime, whether reported or not, including victims, bereaved relatives, parents or guardians of victims under 18 and members of staff where a business has been a victim of crime. They can provide a range of practical and emotional support but if necessary they can also help you access support provided by other organisations.

True Visionreport-it.org.uk

True Vision is a website which was set up by the National Police Chiefs Council to allow people to report hate crime and hate incidents online. You can report all types of hate crime via True Vision and the website also provides lots of advice and guidance on where to get help and support.

Tell MAMAtellmamauk.org

Tell MAMA supports victims of anti-Muslim hate and also measures and monitors anti-Muslim incidents. You can report to Tell MAMA via telephone, email, SMS text message, Facebook or Twitter. Visit their website for more information.


CST stands for Community Security Trust, which is a charity that protects British Jews from antisemitism and related threats. You can report an incident to CST on their website or via their contact number 0800 032 3263. CST has a dedicated team which deals with anti-Semitic incidents and provides victim support, while respecting your confidentiality at all times.


Galop is an LGBT+ anti-violence charity who support lesbian, gay, bi, trans and queer people who have experienced hate crime, sexual violence or domestic abuse. Galop is completely independent – they are a community-led group and are not connected to police. You can talk to them anonymously if you choose. Visit their website or call them on 020 7704 2040.

The most important thing is to tell someone and get some help. Hate is not something that you have to live with. Please report it so we can make it stop.

If you have witnessed hate crime, but you were not the victim

You do not have to be the victim of hate crime to report it to police.

If you have witnessed an incident, you can still make a report to the police on 101 or to any of the above organisations.

Take a stand and say no to hate

Hate crime shatters communities. It causes fear and division and leaves its victims living in fear.

It’s everyone’s responsibility to stand up to hate and to not accept it in our communities. If you see something, please do something and report it to police.