To mark National Hate Crime Awareness Week, Heidi from Norfolk and Suffolk Victim Care has written a guest blog explaining what hate crime is, its impact, and how they support those affected across Norfolk and Suffolk.
Hate Crime is when a person or persons are targeted verbally or physically because of a specific characteristic, or a perceived characteristic: Disability; race; religion or faith; sexual orientation; transgender identity.
With it being Hate Crime Awareness Week, I wanted to let you know about the support available for anyone who may have experienced this or indeed any, type of crime. At Norfolk and Suffolk Victim Care, part of the national charity Victim Support, we support anyone in Norfolk and Suffolk who has been a victim of, or a witness to, crime.
Hate crime may be a one-off incident, or it may continue and be ongoing. Either way, we are here to offer a free, non-judgemental safe space for someone to talk, feel listened to and supported. It can be difficult to cope after a crime, and we know that such an incident can leave a person feeling upset, overwhelmed, and wondering why – why me? Why did this happen? At times, it can affect our mental health too, raising anxiety and stress levels. Our aim is to help people to cope and recover through the impact of the experience, to move forward and to be able to find ways to feel better in themselves.
We are a free, confidential and independent service. We support all crime types – from anti-social behavior, theft, cybercrime, stalking, and assault, as well as hate crime. The incident does not have to be reported to the police for someone to access our service and it does not matter whether the incident has just happened, or if it happened several months or years ago. We offer ongoing support and reassurance, as well as practical help, and advocacy with other agencies. We also help people understand their rights under the Victims’ Code and to navigate the Criminal Justice System (CJS) if it is going to court.
We stay with our service users for as long as they need us and we have a person-led approach; we tailor the support to each individual’s needs, so that the support can be by phone or in person, on a weekly or fortnightly basis, or whatever is needed. If you have been affected by crime, and if you feel you could do with some support, you can access our service by phone, email, or Live Chat. We are here to listen.
Norfolk and Suffolk Victim Care Tel: 0300 303 3706 24/7 Supportline: 0808 168 9111 Email: email@example.com Livechat: https://www.victimsupport.org.uk/help-and-support/get-help/support-near-you/live-chat/ Web: www.nsvictimcare.org