Cumbria Police say disabled hate crime under reported

Related Stories

Only 17 hate crimes against disabled people were reported in Cumbria last year because victims did not realise an offence had been committed, police said.

In 2012, 166 victims came forward to say they had been physically or verbally abused because of their race.

Cumbria Police is so concerned by the low number of complaints, it is launching an awareness campaign.

It said many people did not realise being spat at or slapped was a crime.

Over the next eight weeks, police and Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) officers will be visiting disability groups to spread the message that abuse is a crime and should be reported.

A police spokesman said: "Targeting someone based on their real or perceived vulnerability is inexcusable - but we can only take action when we know a crime has taken place.

"We have had a number of conferences and meetings with disabled people over the past 18 months and they told us that it wasn't unusual for them to be shouted at, slapped or spat at as they went about their daily business.

"The majority also said that they didn't report this to police because they hadn't realised this behaviour could be considered criminal."

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Cumbria

Weather

Carlisle

15 °C 10 °C

Features & Analysis

Elsewhere on the BBC

  • FutureThe future is now

    Get the latest updates and biggest ideas from BBC Future’s World-Changing Ideas Summit

Programmes

  • A virtual girlfriendClick Watch

    Using the latest tech to find friends on a night out and meet a virtual girlfriend

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.