Are you worried your child has been a victim of hate crime?
Finding out, or just suspecting that your child has been the victim of hate crime, whatever their age, can be stressful and upsetting. As a parent you might feel guilty but it's important to realise that it is not your fault and you can help tackle it.
Give them support
They'll need to talk. They may well find it hard or feel embarrassed to talk to you about it. Just be there and listen.
What they're experiencing might be linked to bullying. If you think thats the case then take a look at our section on bullying. Either get the facts about bullying, or for more info on how you can actually help them visit Are you worried your child is being bullied?'
Don't keep it quiet - report it
You and your child can come into any police station at anytime, or arrange for us to visit you at home, if that's easier or more comfortable for you. You can talk to us yourself or ask someone else to speak to us on your behalf, like a friend or relative, a community leader or your solicitor. You could even ask someone from your local authority, housing association or advice bureau to speak for you. The most important thing is that you speak to someone.
Consider these options:
- You can contact your local police station or speak to your child's 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 call the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555 111 or visit www.crimestoppers-uk.org
- 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.
If your child is reluctant to speak to you about it, you should encourage them to talk to a professional on a support line such as ChildLine or perhaps contact a CyberMentor (see below for details). It might seem strange, but if your child is feeling embarrassed it may be easier for them to speak to someone that they don't know personally.
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.