Northumbria Police team up with North East services to tackle hate crime in the region

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Hundreds of posters towards tackling hate crime are being displayed across Tyne and Wear.

Northumbria Police have teamed up with the North East’s transport companies and the NHS, to combat hate crimes.

The services across the region are sending the clear message: “Being you is not a crime. Targeting you is.”

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From today, Friday, July 30, hundreds of posters are being displayed on buses, metros, ferries, hospitals, GP practices and walk-in centres, which are aimed at tackling hate crime in the region.

The campaign is being led by the Force’s Community Engagement Team, who hope to raise awareness of what constitutes a hate crime, while encouraging victims to report all incidents to the police.

Northumbria Police have joined forces with Metro operator Nexus, and bus companies Stagecoach, Arriva and Go North East. All of these services will be displaying the posters on board their transport services, as well as at busy stops and metro stations.

The poster will also be shown in a digital format on screens across NHS venues throughout the region, including in major hospitals and surgeries.

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Superintendent Scott Cowie, Northumbria Police’s lead for hate crime, said: “We do not tolerate hate crime of any kind within our communities and discrimination has no place in society.

“We hope this visible campaign sends out a very strong and important message to victims, perpetrators and the wider community as a whole.

“If you are abused because of your race, religion, sexual orientation, gender-identity or disability, that is a criminal offence – and as a Force, we are committed to bringing the perpetrators to justice.

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He continued: “That abuse can appear in various forms, whether it’s verbal abuse, intimidation, threats, harassment, assault or damage to property. You do not have to suffer in silence – please come forward and report it.

“Our appeal also extends far wider to entire communities living here in the North East and beyond. We all have a role to play in reporting hate crimes, to ensure those offenders are rightly brought to justice.

“If you see somebody committing a hate crime, or know of any instances of abuse, reporting it can help us take swift action and potentially prevent similar incidents from happening to someone else.”

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Kim McGuinness, added: “I love our region for being the friendly and welcoming place everyone knows it to be. Anyone who doesn’t adhere to that and chooses to target and harass others, for whatever reason, needs to know it will not be tolerated.

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“Whether sat in the doctor’s waiting room or travelling home on the bus, I hope people will see the campaign and feel confident to report any abuse, in the knowledge that it will be taken seriously, investigated, and they’ll be offered support.

“This campaign complements a range of other measures that are also being rolled out across the region as part of my Safer Transport Northumbria Project. Patrols, engagement, youth work, apps – there is lots happening as part of a region-wide mission to make people feel safer and change unacceptable behaviours.

“The only thing not welcome in the North East is hate.”

Customer Services Director at Nexus, Huw Lewis, said: “There is no place for hate crime and discrimination anywhere in society and we are proud to stand with our fellow transport operators, local authority partners and Northumbria Police to support this new awareness raising campaign.

Nexus are one of the many services teaming up with Northumbria Police to tackle hate crime.Nexus are one of the many services teaming up with Northumbria Police to tackle hate crime.
Nexus are one of the many services teaming up with Northumbria Police to tackle hate crime. | Northumbria Police

“The campaign posters will be visible across the public transport network, including Metro, buses and ferries, and highlight how to report a hate crime. There’s a really strong message in the posters that abuse of any form will not be tolerated in our communities and on our transport networks. If you experience any form of threats, harassment or discrimination when travelling then please come forward and report it so that action can be taken against those responsible.”

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Hate crimes are crimes committed against someone because of their race, religion or belief, disability, gender identity or sexual orientation and should be reported to the police.

To report a hate crime, please get in touch with Northumbria Police via the Report a Crime page of their website, or by calling 101. If you are in immediate danger, always call 999.