What is the difference between a hate incident and a hate crime?

Hate incident

Something is a hate incident if the victim or anyone else thinks it was motivated by hostility or prejudice based on: 

  • disability 
  • race or ethnicity 
  • religion 
  • transgender identity
  • sexual orientation 

Hate incidents take many forms such as:

  • verbal abuse 
  • threats
  • bullying
  • malicious complaints 

If you believe something is a hate incident, it should be recorded as a hate incident by the person you report it to. 

Hate crime 

When hate incidents become criminal offences they are known as hate crimes. A criminal offence is something that breaks the law. Hate crimes can include:

  • threatening behaviour
  • assault
  • robbery
  • damage to property
  • inciting others to commit hate crimes
  • harassment

Report a hate crime or incident

If anyone is in danger, always call the Police on 999. Non-urgent calls can be on 101.

You can report a hate crime or incident to the Camden Safety Unit (CSU):

Report a hate crime or incident  

The CSU investigates all hate crime reports. Officers are trained to provide support to victims. 

Other ways to report 

Alternatively, you can contact other organisations, such as:
•    Camden LGBT Forum
•    Camden People First
•    Protecting our Jewish Community: Community Security Trust
•    Hopscotch Asian Women’s Centre
•    Queen’s Crescent Community Association
•    Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks: Tell Mama
•    Reporting Racism: The Monitoring Group
•    Victim Support  

If you don’t want to involve the police, you can report hate crime to:

Contact Community Safety

Camden Safety Net

Racial harassment

Racial harassment can take place at work, in public places, in your local neighbourhood or estate. It is a deliberate act committed against a person because of their colour, race, nationality, ethnic origin or religion. Racial abuse and harassment is a crime.

Racial harassment can take many forms including:  

  • threats, insults, name calling, spitting  
  • physical assaults and violence  
  • insulting graffiti, damage to your property  
  • sending threatening letters or offensive material 

We’re committed to tackling and challenging racial abuse and harassment to ensure communities are as safe as possible.  

For more information: 

Contact Community Safety

Homophobic and transphobic crime

Homophobic and transphobic abuse and harassment are criminal acts. That means we can take action against people who are homophobic or transphobic.

Homophobic and transphobic crime is any incident where there is overt evidence that the perpetrator's motivation is based on their perception that the victim is lesbian, gay or transgender (LGBT) or because the victim perceives this to be the case.

Homophobic and transphobic crime can take many forms, including:

  • physical violence and/or harassment
  • bullying and threats
  • sexual abuse/rape
  • blackmail and hate mail

It is often difficult for victims or witnesses of homophobic crime and transphobic crime to talk about it or ask for help. It is estimated that over 85% of homophobic crimes go unreported.

We want to do something about that by giving victims several ways to get the support they need, and witnesses a variety of ways to report what they have seen.

Reporting homophobic crime to the police

To report crime in an emergency dial 999. Non-urgent calls can also be made to the LGBT liaison team in the Community Safety Unit (CSU) at Holborn police station.

Staff at the CSU are trained to provide support to victims of hate crime, regardless of where an attack took place, whether in a victim’s home, on the street, or on a known cruising ground.

The CSU is able to:

  • investigate the crime and enforce the law
  • support the victim to apply for injunctions or Anti Social Behaviour Orders
  • give advice and support
  • refer to other agencies for additional support

Camden LGBT Forum

Camden Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Forum provides non-police reporting, and works to support victims of hate crimes and homophobic harassment.

Camden LGBT Forum has produced a method of reporting crimes so that the police do not have to be involved. By using the non-police reporting form you can tell us about where crimes are happening and we can try to do something about it.

If you ask us to, we will pass the information about your crime anonymously on to the Police.

For more information please contact the Camden LGBT Forum.

Council tenants and leaseholders

If you are a Council tenant or leaseholder you can report any homophobic or transphobic harassment to your ward housing team. They will take a report, and if necessary involve other Council teams and the police.

Contact your ward housing team

Victim Support in Camden

Victim Support in Camden has a dedicated homophobic and transphobic crime worker.

Victim Support in Camden provides free and confidential support and advice.

If you have been victim you can refer yourself to directly to Victim Support without going to the police.

Contact Camden Victim support

Hate Speech Framework

This framework contains advice and good practice for community venues when taking bookings. It includes the checks that should be in place and guidance on how to mitigate the risk of undesirable bookings.

The framework for responding to speakers promoting messages of hate and intolerance in venues in Camden can be seen here

Adopting a definition of antisemitism

On the 24th April 2017 Full Council voted to adopt an altered version of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism.

Upon adopting the definition, it was agreed that there would be a review to understand the impact that adopting this definition has had.

The full report of the review can be seen here

Adopting a Definition of Islamophobia

On 8th April 2019, Full Council passed a motion to adopt the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on British Muslims Definition of Islamophobia.

“Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.”


Full definition and examples of Islamophobia can be seen here.