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Hate Crime Co-ordinator Appointed

Friday May 2 2014

Fiona Thompson Fiona Thompson

A HATE crime co-ordinator has been appointed by the police to deal with incidents in Barnsley.

Last year there were 240 hate crimes reported in Barnsley - defined as prejudice against race, religion, sexuality or disability.

The new co-ordinater Fiona Thompson manages police investigations and also works with the community to enhance the perception of how the police deal with such offences.

She works with bodies including the council and the Lesbian Bisexual Gay Transgender Forum to encourage people to report such crimes.

She said: "Hate crime can be anything to people shouting in the street to criminal damage to serious assault to a death.

"A lot of people normalise it and think they should put up with this type of behaviour and we trying to make sure it's reported to us."

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Reply Posted by Anon on Friday May 2 2014 at 11:57
What about neighbours? Hoarders that treat thier gardens as rat playgrounds? The council seem powerless. My brother hates his neighbour. Can Fiona help?

Reply Posted by Patrick on Friday May 9 2014 at 23:57
Anon, the council can deal with this using litter clearing notices that result in fines, prosecution or eviction depending on the circumstances. If it is social housing housing. the landlord can use a range of measures including ASB injunctions or the new Injunctions Preventing Nuisance or Annoyance. This isn't rocket science to resolve but unfortunately neither the council or police consistently understand the impact and fail to enforce accordingly. Hope you get it resolved.

Reply Posted by anon on Saturday May 10 2014 at 00:10
Thanks for that @patrick,but the guy owns his own property. His front and back garden and house are truly like scrap yards. The problem is,after reading the carry on with Mr roddis on a different thread it makes it difficult to dare to press the issue. The council have been notified,but nothings changed. We think as its a privately owned property they don't have power to make him clean up. Feel useless and worried about causing trouble to be honest.

Reply Posted by Patrick on Saturday May 10 2014 at 00:27
The council have the power regardless of the type of ownership. I have managed these functions for councils previously and sanctioned prosecution numerous times.I train and lecture in investigation and enforcement skills. I am aware of the case you refer to and that went on far too long. Intimidation of a witness is a criminal offense in either a criminal or civil case (As per the ASBO). My advice would be to clearly record the impact on yourself and your family (in writing) and be firm with the council. You have nothing to fear and despite the recent case the law is on your side. I suggest you also build a positive and constructive relationship with your local neighborhood policing team.

Reply Posted by anon on Saturday May 10 2014 at 01:02
Thanks for the info Patrick,I'm not sure if my brother will take action though, he has contacted the council to no avail. Its OK saying the law is on his side,but at the end of the day it takes a lot of courage to stir things up, and then the guy will still be his neighbour. He is by the way slightly unhinged, he thinks nothing of swearing in front of my brothers kids and threatening violence. At present there's no nastiness between them and I reckon for the ease of mind my brother will just decide to accept the filthy situation. Who needs conflict. It does seem like the cowards way out,but the alternative could be bad. Sounding pathetic I know,but it is a real problem.

Reply Posted by true red on Friday May 2 2014 at 20:32
What about this government and the systematic demonisation of the disabled by the works and pensions or the Torie lead newspapers degrading the poor and the jobless is she going to do anything about that "no didn't think so"

Reply Posted by just me on Saturday May 3 2014 at 20:00
We all know what hate crime means get real

Reply Posted by j on Sunday May 4 2014 at 08:35
Hate Crimes Co-ordinator - what a joke, another fancy title with a fancy salary - sounds about right to me!

Reply Posted by John on Tuesday May 6 2014 at 12:19
Never been able to understand why hate crime should be treated any more or less severely than the same crime committed for other reasons. Surely assault is assault and muder is muder, whatever the motivation behind it. The effects are still the same. People should be punished based on their actions, not what's in their head.

Reply Posted by paul on Tuesday May 6 2014 at 17:12
Well done Barnsley.

No doubt this will be seen by some as, "PC gorn mad!".
But certain groups of society are needlessly targeted for unnecessary hatred and abuse.
Every person has the right not to feel threatened because of who they are.

I hope disability hate crimes will also be covered by the department.

Reply Posted by rainbow on Wednesday May 7 2014 at 12:13
More Labour waste, do doubt she'll be payed a kings ransom for this dubious role.?

Reply Posted by Andrew on Friday May 9 2014 at 22:21
Anyone can be a victim of a hate crime and yes disability crimes are covered by the department. Hate crime is on the rise in South Yorkshire and it needs to be addressed and dealt with.
I have had the pleasure of meeting with Fiona and she is very passionate about her role and wants to make a difference.
Hate crimes are under reported and the real figure is higher than reported. Having a designated person in the role helps build confidence that these types of crimes with be sensitively and thoroughly investigated.

Reply Posted by Patrick on Saturday May 10 2014 at 00:12
I've never met Fiona but I know she fills a very important role. Hate crime is about targeting perceived difference or vulnerably. Please google the Pilkington case that lead to the death of Fiona Pilkington and her disabled daughter that were systematically victims of narrow minded individuals due to her daughters disabilities. There are dozens of sad cases in recent years of individuals and families subjected to sustained abuse resulting in harm or death because they are perceived to be different. The Hate Crime Officer carries out a very important role to ensure multi agency cooperation to reduce the harm to victims of hate crime. Hate crime is very real and yes has probably always existed......but now we have the humanity, determination and knowledge of its existence to tackle it. Good luck Fiona.

Reply Posted by khoyle on Saturday May 10 2014 at 17:21
Well this is good news my partner had been on disability for a long time not due to physical but mental issues ,he gets reported to disability,housing even had RSPCA out as people kept making untruthful reports against him over and over again.my partner has even been at the stage of even ending his life due to this ,something must be done -the word disability is not just a word for people have no use of legs or arms there is other types .i would love to know how to contact this lady and will be making enquiries.

Reply Posted by Julie Atkinson on Thursday May 15 2014 at 19:04
This post should be applauded, my daughter had the unfortunate lesson in life when she moved from a multicultural school to one in Barnsley only to be horrified with the prejudice that her peers held. Fortunatley she had the intelligence to see this as total ignorance of small minded people who judge others without even attempting to learn or mix with people different from themselves.
She continues to judge people as individuals regardless of their race, religion, culture or gender. That is why I am and are very proud of her, she could no more judge a person with ant kind of prejudice than I could agree with some of the comments on this page.

ipso Regulated