Hate crime services

Hate crime is any crime where the offender targets a person or community because of the victim’s personal characteristics (or when an offender assumes that their victim comes from a particular group or community).

Victims of hate crime are usually targeted because of their perceived:

  • disability
  • race
  • religion or belief
  • sexual orientation
  • transgender identity.

However, any crime or incident motivated by bias or prejudice against a person’s identity, such as targeting of alternative subcultures, can be considered a hate crime.

Who is most affected by hate crime?

Hate crime often affects the most vulnerable people, which makes it harder for them to seek help. Many victims feel that they can’t tell anyone about what is happening to them, and end up suffering in silence. This damages people’s self-esteem and can affect whole communities. Victims may also not tell the police because they aren’t confident in the criminal justice system.

About a quarter of hate crime prosecutions collapse because the victim thinks the justice system won’t support them. People or communities affected by hate crime may already feel excluded from mainstream society, and hate crime can deepen feelings of isolation.

As victims can retreat into their communities, we work in partnership with many community groups and hate crime specialist agencies to build confidence and let isolated people know that they don’t have to suffer alone. We provide a wide range of  support services that we can tailor to specific cases. This includes work with ‘third party reporting centres’, which enable victims to report a crime without having to deal directly with the police. So, as well as supporting the direct victims, we’re working hard to inform, educate and prevent hate crime from damaging communities.

We are the oldest victims’ charity in the world, with more than 50 years’ experience of supporting and working with people affected by crime. We are a trusted partner and work closely with local organisations and communities, local and national agencies, local and national government, and other third-sector organisations to deliver effective, victim-centred services that give people the support they need to move beyond the impact of crime.

As in independent charity, we can reach out to people who wouldn’t normally engage with the police and other justice agencies. Local needs vary so we flex and tailor our services accordingly.

If you’ve been affected by hate crime and would like information or support, you can get in touch by:

If English is not your first language and you’d like support, call our Supportline and let us know which language you speak. We will call you back with an interpreter as soon as possible. We also welcome calls via Relay UK and SignLive (BSL).

If you want to know more about hate crime, you can visit our hate crime page.