Improving our response to disability hate crime is a priority
The NPCC, College of Policing and CPS have issued the following joint response to today's follow up report looking at disability hate crime from the HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI), HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) and HM Inspectorate of Probation.
Peter Lewis, Chief Executive of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) David Tucker, Crime and Criminal Justice Lead at the College of Policing Chief Constable Simon Cole, National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) Lead for Disability
“Disability hate crime is an appalling type of offending. It can have a huge impact on individual lives and undermine trust in society. As today’s report highlights, we must continue to improve our response, which is why the CPS, College of Policing and NPCC have made it a priority.
“It’s disappointing that the measures put in place to build confidence among those who experience disability hate crime has not led to a significant increase in reporting. Whilst reporting rates in England and Wales are higher than in other countries, we recognise that there is a need to make further progress.
“In recent years, we have undertaken extensive activity in this area. Chief officers have responded to the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and a joint Framework for Implementation sets out nationally agreed actions. Third party reporting tools, such as the True Vision website, are increasing the options available to victims and witnesses of disability hate crime.
“The College of Policing has published comprehensive guidance and in 2014 the CPS launched a new Disability Hate Crime Action Plan. Better training aims to increase awareness amongst officers and staff throughout the criminal justice system.
“We are committed to working together and alongside local organisations in order to press forward and ensure all members of our society are treated as equals.”
Over the past year, NPCC and CPS have agreed: A joint action plan National and force level liaison priorities A joint national training event for hate crime specialists, which will take place 1 September
In 2014, the CPS launched the Disability Hate Crime Action Plan and eight months in, a great deal has already been achieved.
Disability Hate crime is now routinely factored in to all discussions at Area performance review meetings so that progress can be monitored, they also provide an opportunity to discuss any emerging issues in detail.
Established disability hate crime guidance sheets, which provide advice to prosecutors, checklists on key aspects of disability hate crime and sentence uplift guidance.
Webinars on disability hate crime have been delivered to staff dealing with these crimes as part of our training initiative.
As part of the Action Plan, the CPS will be implementing mandatory training packages to all prosecutors, with further training for specialist disability hate crime prosecutors, which should improve consistency across the CPS and lead to an increase of positive outcomes.
The joint ACPO and College of Policing ‘Framework for Implementation’ can be found in full at http://www.college.police.uk/What-we-do/Support/Equality/Documents/Disability_hate_crime_implementation_framework.pdf
The True Vision website is available at http://www.report-it.org.uk/home
For any questions or additional information please contact:
Holly Hall, CPS, 020 7147 7553 Jason Lavan, College of Policing, 07827 309361 Georgina Wade, NPCC, 07803 903686