Examining the boundaries of hate crime policy: Considering age and gender

Author(s) Mason-Bish, Hannah
Title Examining the boundaries of hate crime policy: Considering age and gender
Source Criminal Justice Policy Review, May 2013, Vol. 24, No. 3, pp297-316
Date 2013
Document type Journal article
Coverage United Kingdom
Summary This article examines the exclusion of age and gender from hate crime policy. For the study 50 in-depth interviews were conducted with key informants in England and Scotland, including policy makers, criminal justice officials and lobbyists. The interviews were focused on the strategies and decision making employed by those shaping policy on hate crime. The respondents in the study gave particular attention to domestic violence when discussing gender as a potential category and assumed age-related hate crime would be elder abuse. Many respondents felt that victims would not gain anything from being labelled as hate crime victims and it would only add a further layer of policy demands on police and service providers. Age and gender were seen as difficult areas of victimisation and too complex to include under hate crime policy. The findings suggest that one of the main reasons why age and gender are excluded from hate crime policy is because it would be difficult to establish which incidents were motivated by hatred and which by other factors, such as vulnerability. The author suggests that future research into hate crime is needed that examines its multifaceted impact on victims.
Keywords Victimisation; hate crime; conceptualisation; social constructionism
Topic Victimisation