Independent charity Victim Support will host a virtual event on 13th July, which brings together the Welsh Government and hate crime leaders to work to tackle hate crime across Wales.

Key guests will include the Minister of Social Justice, Jane Hutt MS, and senior leaders from the Welsh police forces, Cardiff University and many more.

The event comes after the charity has seen a stark increase in demand for its hate crime support services, up to 70%, during the pandemic. This rise was driven largely as a result of racial and homophobic related incidences.

In response to this rise in demand, Victim Support launched the Hate Crime Charter, which commits organisations to deliver rights for victims, as well as supporting them in identifying and reporting hate related crimes and incidences.

Jane Hutt, Minister for Social Justice, said: “We want to make Wales a safe place where everyone is free to be themselves – no one should ever have to live in fear and experience hate.

“Through the Charter and through Hate Crime Leaders, Victim Support has created an important network of allies to help support its work with victims and its awareness raising activities across Wales. These initiatives highlight that everyone can play a part in tackling hate crime and promoting equality.

“The Welsh Government has signed the Hate Crime Charter and I encourage organisations and establishments from all sectors and backgrounds to join us. I hope the event will inspire more involvement and build on the great progress already made.”

Ahead of the event, Victim Support’s Chief Executive Officer, Diana Fawcett, said:

We are very pleased to host the upcoming discussion, bringing together Hate Crime leaders and the Welsh Government, and to welcome the Minister of Social Justice, Ms Jane Hutt to the event.

“The aim of our Hate Crime Charter is to help make a more equal, safe and inclusive Wales and we all have a role to play in making this possible. This is why we hope to use the upcoming event as an opportunity to acknowledge the important work already done by the organisations that signed up to the Charter but also to discuss and inspire the crucial changes ahead of us.”

The event will also mark the launch of Victim Support’s new ‘Trustmark’ to acknowledge the work organisations have done to adhere to the Charter and in  creating a better environment for victims and witnesses of hate crime.

Since its launch in October 2020, 38 organisations across Wales are currently benefiting from the Charter including universities, voluntary organisations and all four police forces. It has also meant that Victim Support has been able to help over 800 victims of hate crime and train over 2200 people in hate crime awareness, all to encourage long-term change and contribute to a more equal, safe and inclusive Wales.

Victim Support runs the National Hate Crime Report and Support Centre across Wales. Commissioned by the Welsh Government, the service provides free and confidential emotional support to those affected by hate and allows people to report hate crime incidents, including anonymously.

For more information, please contact Victim Support’s press office, press@victimsupport.org.uk or call 07766 070660.