2 November 2011 Paul Maynard MP calls for change in law on disability hate crime

There was important and interesting news from Westminster yesterday where MPs Paul Maynard and Kate Green tabled a new clause to a government act which would update hate crime law in the UK.

Mr Maynard, who chairs the All Party Parliamentary Group for Young Disabled People, and Ms Green told Parliament that they proposed a clause to amend the Criminal Justice Act of 2003. The new clause would mean the law would recognise disability as a motivating factor to a the crime of murder, and apply the same minimum sentencing tarriff for such crimes as currently applies in similar cases with a sexual, racial or religious motivation.

Kenneth Clarke MP, the Secretary of State for Justice responded to the MPs:

May I assure the hon. Lady on behalf of the Government that we agree with her and my hon. Friend the Member for Blackpool North and Cleveleys, I can assure her that we will table amendments in the other House to give effect to what she is asking for.

Trailblazers are currently undertaking an investigation into disability harassment and crime and will be launching our report in the New Year. We look forward to seeing progress on this matter in the House of Lords in the coming months.

Trailblazers Project Manager, Bobby Ancil said:

This is good news for disabled people and a step towards getting disability aggravated crime recognised in the same way that the law recognises similar cases with a sexual, racial or religious motivation.

Get involved in the Trailblazers harassment and hate crime investigation and complete our questionnaire.


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