Today marks the start of the 6th annual National Hate Crime Awareness Week #NHCAW.
The week starts with a special launch event at St Paul’s Cathedral in London, followed by hate crime awareness events across Merseyside and the UK. It aims to bring people together, to stand with those affected by hate crime, to remember those we have lost, and to support those who need support.
Ths year's theme is H.O.P.E which aims to highlight:
- Hate crime awareness - running awareness events to increase public knowledge;
- Operational responses to hate crime - encouraging people to think about how they would respond if hate crime happened to someone they know;
- Preventing hate crime where possible;
- Empowering communities to report hate crime and work together..
The week is organised by the anti-hate crime charity 17-24-30 No Hate Crime Campaign, in partnership with Stop Hate UK, the leading Hate Crime charity.
Last year over 200 events were organised and registered on the 17-24-30 website; its aim is to list as many hate crime events and activities taking place around the UK and add them to an annual National Hate Crime Google map.
Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Jane Kennedy is one of six Police and Crime Commissioners who have written letters of support for the campaign.
Jane said: “Merseyside is a vibrant and diverse region, home to people from all races and faiths, to people of all sexual orientations and genders and to people of all abilities. It is a warm and welcoming region, made stronger by that rich diversity.
“National Hate Crime Awareness Week is an opportunity for us to stand together to demonstrate that hate crime will not be tolerated across Merseyside.
“Nobody should be subject to abuse, fear or hatred simply because of who they are and this week we will be working hard to make sure all those who have been affected know there is help and support available.
“I would urge anyone who has been subjected to hate to contact Merseyside Police on 101 or, if for any reason they don’t feel comfortable speaking to the police, to ring independent charity Stop Hate UK on 0800 138 1625 who I have commissioned to provide 24/7 help and support.
“There are also more than 90 independent centres across the region where you can get help to contact Stop Hate UK - anywhere displaying a ‘red hand’ logo is part of this important network standing up against hate.”
Founder of 17-24-30, Mark Healey said: “We are very proud that National Hate Crime Awareness Week is now being marked by so many local authorities and organisations around the UK.
"This will be our biggest year yet but there is still so much more that needs to be done. We need to get every local authority involved. We want people to organise and get involved in hate crime awareness events everywhere around the UK, to remember those we have lost, and stand together with all those affected by these horrendous attacks.
"Working together we will eliminate all forms of hate crime.”
Rose Simkins, Chief Executive of Stop Hate UK believes it’s an important week in the calendar by adding: “We wholeheartedly support National Hate Crime Awareness week and we would encourage people to show their support to the many people affected by Hate Crime.
"Although every week is Hate Crime Awareness week for Stop Hate UK the week gives others the opportunity to show their support for this vital work and for us all to work closer together.”
For more information visit the National Hate Crime Awareness Week website.
You can find more information at Stop Hate UK or 17-24-30 or via social media using the hashtag #NHCAW.