As reports of hate crime have risen across the UK by 57% since the recent referendum, charities in Bristol are already seeing an increase in requests for help.
For several years Avon & Bristol Law Centre on Stokes Croft has been operating a discrimination law service. Now it is joining forces with Bristol Hate Crime Services (BHCS), led by Stand Against Racism & Inequality (SARI) which includes Bristol Mind, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Bristol and the Brandon Trust, a disability charity.
“We have all seen an increase in enquiries since the Referendum,” said Law Centre Director Clare Carter. “We can help victims report abuse to the police and give legal advice on challenging discrimination and seeking redress. They will also be offered personal and practical support in coping with the effects of abuse.”
Roger Berry, Chair of Trustees at the Law Centre, commented:
“The key to Bristol’s success as a city of sanctuary is in our diverse and inclusive community. To remain such a welcoming city, it must work for all local people. No-one should fear abuse and none should suffer it without help and support. Our organisations are working to provide that help, standing together against all hate crime and discrimination.”
Esther Deans MBE, Chair of SARI, added:
“We must all do all that we can to stand together and work together to tackle racism and hate crime in all that we do. Bristol is an overwhelmingly welcoming and positive City where the majority of citizens celebrate and enjoy the diverse communities that are at its heart. As Jo Cox MP said, we have “more in common” than sets us apart.
“Hate crime is not acceptable and we must ensure that it is the common knowledge that it won’t be tolerated. This is a time for people of Bristol to be an example to others by showing the unity and care we share for each other as part of our Bristol spirit”.
People living in Bristol who have suffered abuse should contact: