13 June 2012 Ministers, police and charities meet with Trailblazers on hate crime
Today Trailblazers joined forces in Parliament with Ministers, the Metropolitan Police Service and charities to tackle the underreporting of disability hate crime.
The meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Young Disabled People followed the publication of Trailblazers Under Investigation report into disability hate crime. The Group heard that young disabled people are failing to report threatening behaviour and verbal and physical abuse in public due to the fear that these crimes will not be taken seriously.
Trailblazer Krishna Talsania from London spoke at the event and told the panelists how she had been verbally abused, spat and sworn at, after using a disabled parking space. Consequently, she no longer goes out in her car alone.
Krishna, along with fellow Trailblazers such as Tmara Senior who also faced intimidation from both students and teachers whilst in further education, shared their experiences with senior Metropolitan Police officers, Minister for Disabled People, Maria Miller MP, Minister for Equalities and Criminal Information, Lynne Featherstone MP and the Equalities and Human Rights Commission.
This cannot continue and we are calling on the government, the police and all relevant authorities to take decisive measures to ensure that this behaviour is not tolerated. We also want to see the Government, local authorities, the police service and other relevant agencies working together to ensure disability hate crime is better recognised and more swift and stronger sentences are passed against perpetrators.
Trailblazers project manager Bobby Ancil said:
A nation-wide police initiative is vital to giving disabled people the confidence to report intimidation and to address inconsistencies in recording disability hate crime. I'm delighted that the Trailblazers have had a chance to share their ideas with the police and the Ministers today.
This meeting is just one of a series of meetings by the All Party Parliamentary Group for Young Disabled People, which was set up to investigate the issues facing young disabled people in the UK.