St Helens Council has launched a new campaign with the backing of St Helens R.F.C. that aims to tackle hate crime in the borough.
The #BetterThanThat campaign launched on IDAHOBIT Day (the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia), which is observed on 17 May and aims to coordinate international events that raise awareness of LGBT rights, violations and garner interest in LGBT rights work worldwide.
New #BetterThanThat banners have been installed in the stands at Saints’ Totally Wicked Stadium, with thousands of rugby fans and families set to see the messages.
Hate Crime is any offence or hostility directed at individuals, groups and communities because of who they are or who someone thinks they are. This can include; threats, physical harm, property damage and harassment, because of race, religion, disability, sexuality, gender identity, nationality or ethnicity.
The campaign asks residents to sign a hate crime pledge, stating that they agree that no one should have to face hate crime; that they support and celebrate diversity; that they will stand up for equality; and that they will report hate crime wherever it appears.
Councillor Jeanie Bell, St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Safety: “Hate crime is unacceptable. We all have the right to live without fear, hostility and intimidation from others.
“Although incidents of hate crime remain low in St Helens, the crime can have a devastating impact on local communities. That is why we are asking for everyone to be #BetterThanThat!
“We want St Helens to be a place where everyone can be themselves. By making your promise today, you are showing that you support equality and you want to become an advocate for change.”
To sign the pledge, and to find out more about hate crime and the reporting of it, visit www.safersthelens.org.uk/noplace4h8.
Call 101 to report hate crime to Merseyside Police, or 999 in an emergency situation. You can also report non-emergencies on social media via Facebook at Merseyside Police Contact Centre and Twitter @MerpolCC.
You can also report hate crime to the 24 hour Stop Hate UK helpline on 0800 138 1625.