TOGETHER! Empowering civil society and Law Enforcement Agencies to make hate crimes visible
The context: a glance at the present
Despite the efforts of EU Member States to fight hate crimes based on racism and xenophobia, there are indications that the situation in Europe is not improving. In particular, according with the European Agency on Fundamental Rights (FRA), under-reporting of hate crimes continue to be a significant problem across Europe. Many times victims do not identify the crime they suffered as a hate crime, or don’t report it to Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) for fear and lack of trust in authorities. Alike, most of the time LEAs, non-governmental organizations or victim support groups don’t have the specific knowledge to identify and report correctly this type of crimes. As a result, many crimes remain invisible. In such cases, the rights of victims may not be fully respected or protected, meaning that EU Member States are not upholding their obligations towards victims.
The goal: why this project?
This project aims to improve LEAs and civil society abilities in making hate crimes visible among European society, which is the first step to tackle hate crimes and address related fundamental rights violations. The specific objectives of the project are:
– to strengthen the capacity of LEAs, NGOs and community-based organizations to identify and report hate crimes and to interact with victims;
– to improve data collection on hate crimes by creating and implementing standard methodologies and tools for data collection aimed at LEAs and civil society organizations;
– to strengthen networking and collaboration between LEAs and civil society –on a national and international level– in information exchange and follow up on hate crimes.
The activities: what to do?
To reach the goals of raise awareness on hate crimes, improve civil society abilities in making hate crimes visible, and fight hate crimes based on racism and xenophobia, the project will act on different levels and settings:
1) training on hate crimes, particularly aimed at members of LEAs, NGOs and community-based organizations.
2) information and communication about hate crimes reporting, also using data collection tool and mechanisms of information exchange between civil society and LEAs
3) dissemination of knowledges and best pratices against hate crimes
The outcomes: materials and instruments
– training sessions
– didactical package
– data collection tools
All these instruments will be available on this website, making possible that concerned people, organizations, institutions etc. use them to raise awareness on hate crimes among the European society.
Duration of the project
A 1st December 2014 – 31st November 2016
Cyprus, Czech Republic, Italy, Spain.
Partners of the project
OPU – Organization for Aid to Refugees
Camera del lavoro di Milano
Università di Roma 3 -Osservatorio contro il razzismo
SOS Racisme Catalunya
SOS Racismo / SOS Arrazakeria Gipuzkoa
National Union of Chiefs and Local Police Officers of Spain;
Catalan Association of Local Police Chiefs and Commanders.
The following institutions officially support the project:
Special Prosecution Service to Investigate Bias-Motivated Crimes of Barcelona;
Superior Court of the Basque Country;
Service for Integration and Interculturalism, Government of Basque Country
Immigration General Direction, Government of Catalonia;
Department of Local Police of Milan City Council;
Commissioner for Administration and Human Rights (Ombudsman), Cyprus.