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Agencies Tackle Race-Hate Offences

Centres for the reporting of racial attacks and offences motivated by race hate are being set up in Rugby.

The annual meeting of the Rugby Race Equality Council will be held on Thursday, which will launch the project. 

It aims to promote the reporting of race crime and will check on how well the complaint has been handled.

Rugby Borough Council is joining forces to set up reporting centres at the Rugby Race Equality Council in Pennington Street, the police station in Newbold Road, the council's housing and environmental health department in Newbold Road, and the Benn Partnership Centre in Railway Terrace. 

Each site will act as a reporting centre for racially-motivated crime.

The council explained that racial harassment is any act or behaviour directed at people or their property because of their colour, race, nationality, ethnic or national origins.

A racist incident is one that is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person. That could be in the form of verbal abuse, physical assault, acts which cause alarm or distress, or damage to property.

Racial harassment is an offence and the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 recognises the different type of racially-motivated crime and their effects.

Paul Barnes, head of housing management at Rugby Borough Council, said:

“The Rugby Racial Harassment Monitoring Project has been set up to record and tackle racist incidents. Reports may be made to any of the local reporting centres.

“Incidents can be reported, in which case no further action can be taken, or they can be investigated and action taken against the perpetrators.

“All reports will be regularly reviewed by the agencies and community organisations involved.

“The action taken on each incident will be considered and organisations may be asked to account for any apparent unwillingness to pursue perpetrators. The review allows patterns of offences to be identified and further action taken to deal with problem area.

“The project will only be effective if people report incidents. It is intended to have a number of local volunteers, particularly in community groups, who are willing to help victims. All agencies taking part in the project have also been trained.”

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CWN / Politics / Rugby Borough Council / 12 Sep 00

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