Response to the Home Affairs Committee’s ‘Hate crime: abuse, hate and extremism online’ report

1 May 2017

In response to the Home Affairs Committee’s ‘Hate crime: abuse, hate and extremism online’ report, our chief executive Neil Heslop said:

‘Through our work with many disabled people affected by hate crime we know how devastating it can be. Some survivors have been left too scared to leave their house, remaining trapped in their homes out of fear. The report is right to highlight online abuse. The 24/7 nature of social media means victims can be relentlessly targeted. 

‘We must not allow the internet to be an uncontrolled space where hate crime against disabled people goes unchecked. The internet is where many disabled people go to socialise and make their voice heard. It is an increasingly important and valued part of disabled people’s lives, as the recent digital protest marches showed.

‘We look forward to hearing from the next government on how they will tackle both online and offline disability hate crime. Such incidents are often not reported to the police because many survivors don’t know who to talk to or how to report attacks. Our charity runs a successful scheme in Northern Ireland with the police to support hate crime survivors and we would hope to see programmes like this expanded across the UK.’

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