This morning at 10:30, the Home Secretary will publish a Hate Crime Action Plan which will include measures to review the police response to hate crime including antisemitism.
Campaign Against Antisemitism welcomes the adoption of its recommendations by the government. Under the new strategy there will be a thorough review of police forces’ response to hate crime by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC). This measure is one of a series of recommendations adopted by the Home Office following regular discussions with CAA.
In May this year, CAA’s National Antisemitic Crime Audit was welcomed by then Home Secretary Theresa May. The Audit noted that there had been a 26% rise in antisemitic crime reported to the police around the UK, a 51% surge in antisemitic violence, but a drop in charging by police forces. Amongst our key recommendations was a national review by HMIC and we are delighted that Theresa May and her successor as Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, have adopted it.
In recent weeks our Chairman and our Director of Investigations and Enforcement have held meetings with the Director of Public Prosecutions, Alison Saunders, and Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt to discuss the poor response to antisemitic crime.
At a time when antisemitic hate crime is increasing, it is encouraging that the Home Office has listened to our recommendations. In January 2015, we presented our five point action plan to the Home Secretary, Director of Public Prosecutions and Chief Executive of the College of Policing. In May this year we specifically called for a review of all forces by HMIC in our National Antisemitic Crime Audit, to which Theresa May responded: “I welcome this review by the Campaign Against Antisemitism and we will consider its recommendations carefully as we develop our new Hate Crime Action Plan.”
Proactive measures are essential, and we welcome this announcement. We look forward to continuing our work with the Home Office to help translate this plan into action, helping to protect Jewish and other minorities.
The recent surge in recorded hate crime following the referendum has revealed to the country what Jewish citizens have known for too long: hate crime is often dismissed and not prosecuted. Non-violent antisemitic hate crime often goes unprosecuted, creating an atmosphere of impunity. This created a climate where there has been and a 51% leap in recorded antisemitic violent attacks.
For too long, British Jews have been denied British justice, and we are very pleased that this is now under the spotlight. Hate crime must be prosecuted with zero tolerance and that means swift, thorough police work and expert prosecution. We need to see more cases prosecuted, not just those for certain minorities; one type of hate crime is not more or less important than another.