A hate crime is any instance where someone has been targeted because they are believed to be different. This could be motivated by: race, colour, ethnic origin, nationality or national origins; religion or faith; gender or gender identity; sexual orientation or sexual identity; and disability. It may include verbal or written abuse, harassment or intimidation, damage to property, assault, or offensive texts or emails.
Why report a hate crime?
It is important to report hate crimes, as everyone has the right to live free from fear, prejudice and violence, regardless of their race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, sexual orientation or any other difference.
By reporting hate crimes, you may be able to prevent them from happening to someone else. If you are the victim or a witness of hate crime, or know someone who is the victim of hate crime, you can report it to the police – in an emergency, telephone 999 or, in a non-emergency, telephone 101.
If you don’t feel able to report a hate crime directly to the police, you can also report it at one of Dorset’s walk-in hate crime reporting centres:
- Weymouth community safety centre, attached to Weymouth fire station
- Dorset County Council and the local district/borough council offices
- If you’re a housing tenant, drop into your local Magna, Sovereign or Hastoe housing offices (Dorset only)
Alternatively, you can telephone any of the following numbers:
- Access Dorset supports anyone living in Dorset to talk to the police on 01202 771336
- Call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. This number is free of charge from a land line or mobile phone
- Dorchester Citizens’ Advice Centre can be contacted on 0845 231 0400
- Weymouth college – 01305 761100
- If you live in Poole, you can call the Borough of Poole’s community safety team on 01202 633438
- Dorset Race Equality Council (for race related hate crimes), call 01202 553003 or email [email protected]