Friday, 29th March 2019
SCHOOLS across the region pledge to support new campaign to tackle hate crime
SCHOOLS across the region have pledged to support a new campaign to tackle hate crime.
The Hate Hurts campaign is being led by the area’s Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner Ron Hogg, who has brought together representatives from business, sport, education and the faith communities in a united stance against hate crime.
The high-profile campaign is informing people about hate incidents, encouraging victims and witnesses to report it and celebrating initiatives that promote tolerance and cohesion.
For pupils at Springfield Academy, part of the Education Village, Darlington, the campaign is being used to reinforce school work to recognise ‘difference’, help pupils to develop opinions and promote understanding and tolerance.
Year 5 pupil Harrison Eager, 10, said: “There’s nothing wrong with being different, we all have something different about us but we are all equal in how we should be treated.”
Year 5 teacher Kelly McManus welcomed the Hate Hurts campaign. She said: “I think it’s a really good idea. Children are sometimes unkind not realising the full implications.
“They also have misconceptions about what the issues are so anything that encourages open discussion must be good. It is important that we all think about how we relate to others without hurting their feelings and don’t just shun them for being different.”
Hate crime describes a range of illegal criminal behaviours committed against someone else because of their disability, race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender identity or some other perceived difference.
Mr Hogg believes education is key. He said: “I am encouraged by the tolerance shown by today’s young people which is why I’m very keen for schools to be involved in the campaign.”
Schools have been sent material which can be used as a prompt for discussion with extra copies available from the Get Involved page at: www.hatehurts.co.uk.
The campaign team also hopes to hear about any initiatives or projects on the topic. The campaign strategy is to Educate, Eradicate and Celebrate.
Mr Hogg added: “Children are among the most tolerant members of our society. We want to celebrate their ability to look beyond disability, colour and religion in developing friendships as part of the Hate Hurts campaign.”
Schools have been invited to take part in an Art and Poetry Competition, aimed at Years 1-3 and Years 4-6, based on the title is Different is Good.
The most inspiring entries will be selected for an exhibition to be held at Durham Police Headquarters in late April.
The closing date for entries is Friday, April 12. Entries should be on A4 or A5 paper and have the name of the child, their age/year group and school on the back. Entries (either singly or in batches) should be sent to:
Hate Hurts Competition, Office of the Police, Crime and Victims’ Commissioner, Police Headquarters, Aykley Heads, Durham DH1 5TT. They can also be emailed to PCVC.firstname.lastname@example.org