07/09/2005

Police launch hate crime initiative

A new campaign to tackle hate crime, which has been designed by young people for young people, has been launched in Carrickfergus.

The initiative, in partnership with police, is designed to make young people think about hate crime; help them understand the issue of hate crime in society; and give basic advice to potential victims by providing contact details for the police and minority support groups.

Superintendent John Fenton, Carrickfergus District Commander said: "This campaign is one of a number of initiatives police are using to highlight the nature and impact of hate crime. The poster and leaflet, which has been designed by the students of Ulidia Integrated College puts the issue in stark and simple terms 'Hate Crime is Wrong'.

"Reporting hate crime is one way of ensuring that further incidents are prevented and offenders held to account and we want to encourage people, whether they are victims of a crime or witnesses to an incident, to report it to police."

Figures in 2004 showed that out of 12 reported incidents of hate crime, young people were the victims or alleged perpetrators in eight of these incidents.

Following this, police in partnership with students from Ulidia developed the campaign, which is part of students' CASE (Citizenship and Safety Education) programme which is delivered in schools across Northern Ireland by police officers.

(MB/SP)

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