Our neighbours have left us feeling unsafe
Ongoing harassment from her neighbours has left Holly* and her husband feeling unsafe in their home. She tells us about their experience of disability hate crime.
The hate crimes we experienced are very close to home. They have made us feel isolated and trapped. It has had a massive impact on our lives and mental health.
My name is Holly, and my husband Dan and I have been suffering repeated hate crimes for the past seven years from neighbours.
During our time living at our current address, we have experienced excessive intentional noise disturbances, verbal abuse, harassment, vandalism, and intimidation. Almost all of our experiences of hate crime have occurred on our property and the area directly surrounding our home.
This ongoing abuse and harassment has made us feel incredibly unsafe and has left us isolated. We do not want to leave our house for fear of further retaliation.
"You're supposed to feel safe in your own home, and they've taken that from us."
We were made to feel isolated
The hate crimes we experienced are very close to home. They have made us feel isolated and trapped. It has had a massive impact on our lives and mental health. We have had neighbours throw eggs at our car, and purposefully play loud music at all hours of the night to prevent us from sleeping.
"When it is where you live, you can't escape it; it is every day."
We tried to report these incidents to the police on multiple occasions to hopefully get the verbal abuse and harassment to come to an end. When contacting the police, we did not feel like we were taken seriously and were told there was nothing they could do to help us.
"It causes emotional distress when it's not taken seriously."
I was left feeling completely out of control
Unfortunately, reporting the incidents to the police only escalated the situation and our car was vandalised. It had a significant negative emotional impact on me as I felt there was nothing anyone could do to stop these ongoing hate crimes from happening. I felt completely out of control, with nowhere to turn.
"We feel there is no point in reporting it anymore; it just makes it worse."
This ongoing exposure to repeated hate crime experiences for the past seven years, with no signs of resolution, has caused severe emotional distress and depression for us. Unable to move for financial reasons, we are forced to be repeatedly exposed to discriminatory and dehumanising verbal abuse and harassment.
"There is no way for the police to stop it. We were told to just move to a new house at one point. It's ruining our lives, and it is not taken seriously."
*The names in this blog have been changed for anonymity.
If you or someone you know has been a victim of hate crime and would like to share their story, please get in touch with Emma at email@example.com.
If you need support with an ongoing hate crime, please contact Victim Support Wales at firstname.lastname@example.org.