Hate crime describes an act “motivated by racial, sexual or other prejudice, typically one involving violence”.
Back in September, the government announced that it will consider whether to recognise misogyny and street harassment of women as a hate crime, in a move hailed as an “amazing” victory by anti-sexism campaigners. But Sara Thornton, chair of the National Police Chiefs’ Council, has recently warned that the police are too stretched to take on all issues. She said that while “treating misogyny as a hate crime is a concern for some well-organised campaigning organisations”, her forces simply “do not have the resources to do everything”.
Thornton’s sentiments have been echoed by Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service Cressida Dick, who has claimed that focusing on classifying misogyny as a hate crime and recording incidents of it is diverting attention away from bigger priorities. She added that officers should not have to deal with reports of misogyny and it should not be a criminal offence either, calling for her force to focus instead on “core policing”.
Discussing whether misogyny should become a hate crime (and therefore handled by the police) on Benji Hyer's Sunday radio show, listener Olivia messaged in to explain how “the lines are too blurred when it comes to some forms of misogyny”, and therefore it should not be down to the police to decide on a subjective matter.
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[audio audio="http://www.wizardradio.co.uk/podcasts/HyersHighlightsMisogynyHateCrime.mp3" title="Benji Hyer on whether Misogyny should be a Hate Crime" descr="Benji Hyer responds to listener Olivia on whether misogyny should be classified as a hate crime in the UK. (2 minutes)"]
Listen to the full discussion from Benji Hyer's radio show on the 'Hyer's Highlights' podcast, here