Statement from Mayor Glanville and Cllr Selman: Tackling hate crime

Hackney Town Hall

Tackling hate crime is a longstanding priority for Hackney Council. In light of recent concerns within the community regarding Anti-Semitism following an incident in which a Rabbi was assaulted in Stamford Hill, we wanted to provide members of the community with an update on how we are working hard with the community, police and other members of our Community Safety Partnership to ensure that we stand with those who are impacted and reiterate that Hackney is no place for hate.

Our strategy for tackling hate crime, which launched last year, details how the Council will stamp out hate crime in Hackney, including improving support for victims of hate, raising awareness of how to report hate crimes, and working with residents to build understanding of hate incidents and crime. 

In line with our strategy, we have provided 100 Council staff and partners with hate crime awareness training in partnership with Stop Hate UK, held awareness stands with Council staff and police partners to encourage residents to share their ideas on how to tackle hate crime, produced a ‘no place for hate’ reporting leaflet for use by Council teams and community partners to promote reporting hate crime. 

We have also reviewed patterns of incidents and offenders with police partners in order to target police and council patrols and reassurance. Our CCTV and enforcement officers are also supporting the police in gathering evidence to tackle hate crime and ensure that offenders are prosecuted. 

Following this recent incident, we have been working with the police and members of the community to support the investigation and have held a number of in-depth conversations between the Council, police, members of the community and Shomrim to discuss how we can build on the work to date and strengthen cooperation. We are looking forward to arranging further opportunities in the New Year, alongside Hackney’s No Place for Hate Champion, Cllr Sade Etti, to meet with the wider community to listen and feed back. 

We stand against all forms of racism including, but not limited to, Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. Our interfaith forum meets regularly to discuss issues affecting the many and varied faiths represented across our borough, and we work hard to protect the rights of disabled people, whose access needs we are continuing to address through our Hackney Access for Everyone scheme. However, as recent events have shown, it is clear that more needs to be done.

Hate crime can have a particularly harmful effect on victims, as it seeks to attack an intrinsic part of who the victim is, or who they are perceived to be - compromising the quality of life for both individuals and communities as a whole. It is shameful that in this day and age, people continue to be discriminated against for the colour of their skin, the faith that they follow, who they love, and more. 

Hackney is a wonderful, diverse place, where people from all backgrounds – different nationalities, religions, sexualities and people with disabilities – share streets, schools, parks, community halls, workplaces and, crucially, our common values of tolerance and respect. We will continue working hard with partners to ensure that Hackney is a place where everyone feels safe, respected and welcome.

If you’re concerned about hate crime, you can contact the police on 101 (in an emergency on 999) or alternatively can call the Stop Hate UK helpline on 0800 138 1625.

For more information about how we are tackling hate crime in the borough, please visit: https://hackney.gov.uk/crime-and-safety