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Government releases ‘shocking’ new figures on transport hate crime

31 March 2021

Disability Rights UK is calling a meeting of key people in the rail industry after the government released ‘shocking’ new public transport hate crime data.

The data shows that between 2014 and 2016, the numbers of disability related hate crime incidents in England reported to the British Transport Police decreased by 37%. But since 2016, the number of incidents has seen an increase of 24%. Only 1.6% of reported hate crimes saw charges brought in 2019-2020.

DR UK Rail Policy Adviser Stephen Brookes said: “After ten years leading work on hate crime, this is a distressing report to read. Hate crime has continued to be an underlying and growing issue, and it is now critical that we look at what is contributing to its increase.

“It is not simply a staffing problem as some unions are suggesting. The solution must involve removing the confusion Disabled people have experienced when reporting such incidents; the actions (or otherwise) of rail and station staff; the fear of escalations and repercussions, and the failure of the justice system to act proportionally on sentencing those found responsible.

“We need joined up and lasting actions and a new multi-agency policy which will make a difference in reducing Disability hate crime on transport”.