Stop Hate UK Helpline to launch in Northamptonshire
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A new 24/7 telephone helpline is being launched in Northamptonshire for all those who are directly affected by or a witness to Hate Crime, to report incidents and receive help, support, advice and guidance.
The new Northants helpline, which will be operated by Stop Hate UK - a national charity that provides independent and confidential support to people who are affected by all forms of Hate Crime - has been launched this week to mark the 10th annual National Hate Crime Awareness Week (October 9-16).
The provision of the helpline has been made possible by joint funding being agreed by Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold, and the two unitary authorities of West Northamptonshire Council and North Northamptonshire Council.
Rose Simkins, Chief Executive of Stop Hate UK, said: “We are delighted to launch our helpline service in Northamptonshire. All forms of hate crime are significantly under-reported and some people and communities are reluctant or unwilling to talk to the police or their council. We are able to support people who may feel they have nowhere else to turn. Contact with our helpline, or other reporting channels, might be the first time an individual has talked to someone about the things they are experiencing. No-one should have to suffer hate crime in silence, and working together with the police, two unitary authorities and OPFCC we can help to make a difference in Northamptonshire.”
Laura Jones, Prevention Manager at Northamptonshire Police, added: “Whilst we encourage victims and witnesses to contact the police regarding Hate Crime, it’s a really positive step for the County to have an independent third party reporting facility, providing 24/7 support to victims and witnesses. We hope this service helps to bring some resolution to those who have sadly been victimised. We will continue to work together across partners to stamp out Hate Crime and are pleased to be able to bring in another partnership and service to help do this.”
Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold said: “Tackling Hate Crime has been an important priority for me and I am delighted to be able to help fund this helpline. The first contact for victims of Hate Crime is vitally important and if they receive a bad response they could be lost to services and never have the confidence to report again. Hopefully this helpline will demonstrate that they can access expert support and be assured that any report they make will be robustly dealt with.”
The Stop Hate Line is open 24 hours a day, every day of the year on 0800 138 1625. The helpline is also available by text message on 07717 989 025 and by email to [email protected] British Sign Language (BSL) users can report via the interactive BSL link on our website www.stophateuk.org. Victims and witnesses can also chat on the web or fill in an online form by visiting www.stophateuk.org/talk.
People can contact the Stop Hate Line anonymously if they prefer. Where someone has chosen to give their personal details to Stop Hate UK, their trained staff and volunteers will ask who they want their details to be shared with. The charity can also share information with the police and council, with consent, to ensure that those affected by hate crime, in any way, can access the support they need.