-A A +A
Select color visibility that suits you Basic theme Dark theme Darker theme Text only

Hate crime guidance by Disability Rights UK, with the Office for Disability Issues, for disabled people on how to report hate crime or harassment

24 February 2012

News Release

Disability Rights UK (1) has launched a new guide on reporting hate crime experienced by disabled people. Maria Miller MP, the Minister for Disabled People spoke at the launch alongside Liz Sayce, the Chief Executive of Disability Rights UK. The guidance was developed by Disability Rights UK in alliance with ODI and the launch was attended by senior stakeholders from the disability movement.

Reports of hate crime against disabled people are growing and so are prosecutions, which went up to 579 in 2009-10. However, around half of disabled people say in surveys that they have experienced disability-related hate crime or harassment – so these convictions are only the tip of a large iceberg (2) and there is a major discrepancy between the number of disabled people who have been the victim of disability hate crime and the number of disability hate crimes that have been recorded (3). We see instances of disabled people being murdered for the sake of a £5 bet, disabled people's assistance dogs being kicked and abused, disabled people being spat at on the street.

The guidance has been developed for local disabled people's organisations to support them to report incidents of hate crime to the police. In addition, guidance has been produced for carers, friends and families (4).

Liz Sayce said

"Hate Crime against disabled people is shocking and has to stop. I hope our guidance will lead to change locally, enable disabled people to report hate crime and support new partnerships between disabled people's organisations and local agencies, ranging from housing associations through to the police and the CPS."

Maria Miller MP added

"Hate crime in all its forms is intolerable as it perpetuates segregation and creates fear. It has no place in our society, whether it is verbal abuse from children on street corners, mental persecution by those who are meant to provide care or physical attacks carried out by callous bullies. We will not tolerate it.”

For further media information please contact Mark Shrimpton at mark.shrimpton@disabilityrightsuk.org

Notes to editor

  1. Disability Rights UK has arrived - the merger of The Royal Association for Disability Rights (Radar), National Centre for Independent Living (NCIL) and Disability Alliance took place on 1st January 2012. Our vision is a society where all disabled people can participate equally as full citizens. We are the largest UK pan-disability organisation led by disabled people.
  2. Research undertaken by the Disability Rights Commission (Disability Rights Commission and Capability Scotland, Hate Crime against Disabled People in Scotland: 2004) found that approximately half of the disabled people surveyed (47%) had experienced disability hate crime.
  3. The Life Opportunities Survey ACPO (Recorded Hate Crime – January to December 2010) showed that 27% of disabled adults who had experienced hate crime reported that a health condition, illness or impairment, or disability was the motivation for that crime. And yet in 2010 the police only recorded 1,569 hate crimes in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
  4. Disability Rights UK in association with the Office of Disability Issues (ODI) has produced 3 guides. Let’s Stop Disability Hate Crime guidance - A guide for disabled people; A guide for setting up third party reporting sites; and A guide for non-disabled people.