Barnet Council and the police joined forces with Barnet Mencap and local voluntary and community organisations this week to improve access to justice for victims of hate crime.
As part of National Hate Crime Awareness Week, Barnet Council launched its new Hate Crime Reporting Centres. These are based within the community so that victims of hate crime who are apprehensive about reporting to the police, can have an alternative way of reporting to a local trusted community organisation.
Councillor David Longstaff, Chair of the Safer Communities Partnership Board, said:
“This joint initiative, led by the Safer Communities Partnership Board and the Adults Safeguarding Board, is necessary as hate crime is under-reported.
“A new and more effective system of Hate Crime Reporting Centres across Barnet will provide an additional way people can report it, raise awareness and strengthen support within the community.
“We are encouraging voluntary organisations to contact us if they would like to become a reporting centre and we encourage victims of hate crime to report incidents.
“After passing a motion by full council in July condemning hate crime, we want to work with our partners to make it easier for incidences to be reported.”
Voluntary organisations who participate will be able to receive free training for their officers so they can help victims and witnesses report hate crime to the police or other agencies that can take action.