LAUNCHING as part of this year's Hate Crime Awareness Week (October 10-17), the ‘Let's spell it out – This. Is. Hate’ campaign highlights hate crimes and incidents and raises awareness of how those affected can access help and support from Lancashire Victim Services (LVS).
The campaign, funded by Lancashire's Police and Crime Commissioner, also highlights hateful behaviour with the aim of encouraging people to think about how their words and actions can affect others.
Any crime or incident believed to be based on someone's race, ethnicity, religion or belief, gender identity, sexual orientation or disability is a hate crime or incident. People could also be a victim of hate crime if they believe they were targeted because the offender perceived them to be different in some way.
Campaign materials have been developed jointly between LVS, the Police and Crime Commissioner's Office and Lancashire Constabulary and have been shared with partners across the county including colleges and universities, community safety partnerships and local councils.
Nafysa Adam-Khan, Independent Victim Advocate for LVS who specialises in hate crime support said: "We are really proud to launch this campaign to ensure that more people affected can get the help and support they need.
"Hate crime is so personal and can have a huge impact on people and their quality of life. We need anyone affected to know that we are here to support them if they have experienced hate and that we can help them move forward.
"We can provide help and support regardless of whether someone has reported what has happened to the police and we will treat each person as an individual and with the respect they deserve."
Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw added: "We all deserve to live our lives free from fear of abuse or attack. Targeting someone simply because of who they are is unacceptable.
"I am proud of the diverse communities we have here in Lancashire and our county has to be a safe place for all who live here.
"The support Lancashire Victim Services can provide is vital to help anyone affected to move forward and recover and I am proud to support this campaign to help spread this message. We must continue to stand together and say no to hate."
Rozila Kana, Lancashire Constabulary’s Diversity and Inclusion manager commented: “I’d like to reassure people who may have experienced a hate incident or crime that we take all incidents of hate very seriously and will take the necessary action required to bring those who choose hate to justice.
"Supporting the 'Let's spell it out – This. Is. Hate' campaign’ is part of our proactive approach to tackling hate crimes and incidents by working with our communities to increase their understanding about what a hate crime is, why it is so important to us and how to report it.”
Anyone affected by hate crime can contact Lancashire Victim Services on 0300 323 0085, chat online at www.lancashirevictimservices.org or find out more about hate crime support at www.lancashirevictimservices.org/thisishate.