Are you worried your friend is involved in hate crime?
If one of your friends is getting involved in hate crime, whether they're leading it, or being pressured by other people, you need to do something. It's a very serious crime, so don't ignore it, or the problem could get worse.
Why are they doing it?
- Perhaps your friend is involved in bullying.
- Perhaps they don't understand the significance of targeting someone simply because they are different to them.
- Perhaps they're being encouraged by other people to get involved.
If you do think it's linked to bullying take a look at our dedicated section. Either get the facts about bullying, or for more info on how you can actually help them visit Are you worried your friend is a bully?
Whatever the case, your friend needs to understand that what they are doing is wrong. Only then will they realise they must stop.
What can you do?
If you think your friend will listen, encourage them to talk to someone:
- their parents or a responsible adult
- a teacher
- someone professional at a helpline like ChildLine or maybe a CyberMentor (see below for more details)
If you don't think they'll listen to you, don't risk it; talk to someone yourself.
Perhaps you feel you need to report it, even if you know your friend will get into trouble. It's better they get into trouble now than getting into much more serious trouble later:
- You can contact your local police station or speak to your Safer Schools Officer or Safer Neighbourhoods Team - if it's an emergency you should call 999.
- If you feel unable to talk to us you could contact the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555 111 (you won't have to give your name and your call will not be traced).
- Or for more information visit the Reporting crime section on the Metropolitan Police website or the How to contact us page on this site.
You can also report some hate crimes to non-police organisations such as those listed below. For more information visit our 'More help and advice' page.
Our Community Safety Units
The Metropolitan Police Service has made it a high priority to tackle hate crime in all its forms with specialist Community Safety Units located in each of our 32 boroughs. We investigate all hate crime, even in cases where there is only a small amount of information or when a victim has not reported it themselves. And we record all incidents brought to our attention whether or not a crime has been committed.
Getting more help
If your friend's not ready to talk to someone they know, or they want more advice, encourage them to look online or call for more help. Visit our More help and advice page. They could also try the following:
ChildLine is the free helpline for children and young people in the UK, Children and young people can call 0800 1111 to talk about any problem.
CyberMentors is all about young people helping and supporting each other online.
If you're being bullied or are troubled by something, CyberMentors is where you can go for help.