What is a hate crime?

A hate crime is an incident that was motivated by prejudice or hate, based on disability, race, religion or belief, age, sexual orientation, transgender identity or membership of an alternative subculture.

A hate crime can be any sort of crime and can be committed against a person or against property. It can be a physical assault or verbal abuse, face to face or online. It can also be criminal damage or vandalism, like graffiti or other damage to your house or car.

You can be the victim of a hate crime even if you’re not a member of the group that was targeted. For example, you may have been abused because someone thought you were gay even though you’re not. Or you could be the parent of a disabled child but not disabled yourself.