Weston in top 10 police wards for hate crimes

PUBLISHED: 07:00 09 April 2018

More hate crime incidents are being reported to police.

More hate crime incidents are being reported to police.


More hate crimes are being reported in the centre of Weston-super-Mare than almost anywhere else in the Avon and Somerset police force area, a new report has revealed.

An increasing number of hate incidents were recorded by police in North Somerset in 2016/17, and Weston is in the top 10 of police wards for the volume of reports.

It was one of only three wards outside Bristol to be in the top 20.

Most of the incidents are race-related, though there has been a large increase in disability hate crime reports too.

Avon and Somerset Constabulary and North Somerset Council say they will continue to strengthen a ‘zero tolerance approach’ to hate crime.

The increase in incidents in North Somerset to 332 is linked to efforts to encourage confidence in reporting, and improvements made to police recording practices.

The Safe and Stronger North Somerset Plan, drawn up by the police and council says: “It is widely accepted under-reporting is an issue in hate crime offences and police-recorded crime statistics are not an accurate reflection of the true extent of offending.

“Hate crime will not be tolerated in North Somerset and we will continue to work with communities and across the partnership to raise awareness, promote reporting, support victims and bring perpetrators to justice.”

A welfare rights advisor from Weston and North Somerset Disability Information and Advice Line (DIAL) said the types of hate crime can be varied, from intimidation to comments made on the street.

They said: “This is a complex issue. Unless people are disabled themselves or unless they have a close friend or someone they are looking after, the word ‘disabled’ doesn’t really come to mind.

“There is a lack of understanding about disability as a whole, and hate crime probably comes from a lack of understanding.”

The council is part of the Responding to Hate Incidents in North Somerset group, which manages the district’s hate crime strategy. An updated plan is being updated following a consultation in early February.

A DIAL spokesman added: “If you find yourself in a position, where you would like to talk to someone in confidence, but don’t want to go to the police or set off court action, you can talk to us.”

DIAL can be reached on 01934 419426.

More from Weston Mercury

34 minutes ago

A GP practice has agreed to improve safety for its patients in a bid to get the go-ahead to build a surgery.

Read more
Congresbury Yatton

People living in Highbridge could lose their community’s library as early as next month.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:46

The king of rock ‘n’ roll Elvis Presley’s greatest hits will be brought to life again in Weston this month, with one of the best tribute acts in the country taking to the stage.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:31

Prime Minister Theresa May has handed Weston-super-Mare MP John Penrose a role in Government.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:00

An East Brent woman has been given an award for service to the community.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:58

Five pubs in Weston have been recognised for their excellent real ale selection by being included in the Campaign for Real Ale’s (CAMRA) 2019 Good Beer Guide.

Read more
Yesterday, 16:00

Model railway enthusiasts gathered in Highbridge to spend the day indulging their passion.

Read more
Yesterday, 14:31

The Cases Somerset Rebels management will be holding a fans forum at the Oaktree Arena to explain their decision to revert to the championship.

Read more
Yesterday, 14:00

A blue plaque honouring Dr Fox has been unveiled on his original bath house on Knightstone Island.

Read more
Weston Town Council Weston-super-Mare
Yesterday, 12:28

Hornets defeated Midsomer Norton in a high-scoring Somerset Cup quarter-final tie.

Read more

Most Read News

Read Online

Read the Weston Worle and Somerset Mercury e-edition E-edition

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 4°C

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Send Your Letters
Order Photos
Family notices
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Newsletter Sign Up

Weston Mercury twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Show Job Lists