‘Government is doing all it can to stop racism’

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage
Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage

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EQUALITIES minister Caroline Dinenage has condemned Islamophobic racists, branding the act abhorrent.

The Gosport MP made the statement in a written question to parliament by Martyn Day, Scottish National Party, who asked what the government was doing to combat religious hatred.

It comes after figures show the number of hate crimes being reported in Hampshire has increased more than a quarter since June 2015.

Ms Dinenage said: ‘Anti-Muslim hatred is completely abhorrent and this government is committed to preventing and tacking it.’

She added efforts were being made to tackle racism.

‘We have set up the first ever cross-government working group on anti-Muslim hatred, and we have published a new Hate Crime Action Plan to help us ensure nobody in this country lives in fear because of who they are,’ Ms Dinenage said.

The surge in hate crime was revealed earlier this month after a Freedom of Information request.

The data showed 219 incidents were reported in June this year, up from 171 incidents in June last year.

The results, obtained by housing association Viridian Housing, also showed a 16 per cent boost in race and faith-related crimes in policing areas across the UK.

In June last year in Hampshire, there were 124 race crimes, now up to 156 in the same month this year.

Sexuality-related hate crime increased from 20 to 24, disability crime decreased from 16 to 15 and transgender crime increased from four to nine incidents.