Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Let's All Take a Stand against Hate Crime ; Coun Bernard Priest MANCHESTER CITY COUNCIL EXECUTIVE MEMBER FOR NEIGHBOURHOOD SERVICES

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Let's All Take a Stand against Hate Crime ; Coun Bernard Priest MANCHESTER CITY COUNCIL EXECUTIVE MEMBER FOR NEIGHBOURHOOD SERVICES

Article excerpt

IF you ask a group of six people what a victim of hate crime looks like, you might very well get six completely different answers.

And they'd all be right. A hate crime victim could just as easily be a working class white man as it could be a middle class black woman, or an elderly Asian man.

It could be a Jewish person, a Christian, a gay man or a person with disabilities.

As well as people being targeted because of their religion, ethnicity or sexual preference, young people can also be targeted because they belong to sub cultures, such as emos and goths.

And just as there are many kinds of hate crime victims, there are many different kinds of hate crime incidents, from name calling and being spat on in the street to having graffiti daubed on your house and being physically assaulted.

Whatever the circumstances, and whoever the victim is, hate crime is never acceptable here in Manchester.

It is impossible to overstate the impact it can have on the lives of its victims and their families.

It can destroy people's selfesteem, damage their relationships with others and leave them feeling isolated. It can even damage people's health.

It stops people making the most of themselves, furthering their opportunities in education and employment at a time when - more than ever before - it is vital that everyone strives to reach their full potential. As well as affecting individuals, it also has a knock-on impact on our communities and ruins social cohesion when we need to work together to make Manchester a better place for people to live, work and visit.

Just as anyone can be a victim of hate crime, we all have a responsibility to work together to deal with the issue.

A hate crime awareness week is being held this week by the council, Greater Manchester Police, the Crown Prosecution Service and other organisations.

This follows a consultation event last summer, during which we invited people from a wide range of groups to come forward and tell us about their experiences. …

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