Race Hate Britain: Racist Attacks 20 Times Higher Than Police Say

The Mirror (London, England), February 16, 1999 | Go to article overview

Race Hate Britain: Racist Attacks 20 Times Higher Than Police Say


A SHOCK report has uncovered 290,000 race-hate incidents in a year - 20 times more than police figures.

The survey leaked to The Mirror paints a disturbing picture of growing racism in Britain.

Campaigners claim it highlights "massive" under-reporting of racist attacks and harassment.

And they say police are ignoring genuine cases to play down the extent of the problem.

The allegations came as the report on the bungled police inquiry into the murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence was last night handed to Home Secretary Jack Straw.

It is expected to be highly critical.

Figures to be published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation reveal 20,000 attacks, 40,000 cases of damage to property and 230,000 incidents of racist abuse and insults.

The findings by the influential research group followed one of the most extensive surveys ever on racism.

They contrast sharply with police statistics of 13,878 racial incidents in 1998 and are double the Home Office estimates.

Trust communications director David Darton said: "We've spent some months investigating victims of race attacks in London, Belfast, Glasgow and Cardiff. Our initial finding is that a high proportion of cases go unreported."

One racial equality campaigner said: "These figures show the reality of just how many people suffer at the hands of racists.

"Racism is getting much worse in Britain and no one will recognise it.

"It's a massive problem. Police don't take racist incidents seriously. They're a very low priority."

A survey by the Home Office British Crime Survey estimates 140,000 racial incidents a year - 10 times the number reported by police. …

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