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News - 3 April 2006

Businesses learn about 'Hate Incidents'

The first 'Hate Incidents and Your Business' seminar run by the Partnership Community Safety Team was held on Thursday 30th March at Brighton’s police headquarters in John Street.

The seminar informed businesses how they are affected in respect of legislation and in their duty of care to staff and customers. A Hate Incident is where victims are subjected to harassment, intimidation or abuse through racism, homophobia, transphobia, faith, sectarianism or disability.

Tony Mernagh, Chief Executive of the Brighton & Hove Business Forum, said that his immediate concern for businesses is that they will not thrive in areas where Hate Incidents are high, and that there is a knock on effect with residents, customers and tourists avoiding such areas, causing damage to the environment and putting an enormous strain on essential services.

The seminar attracted a wide range of businesses including a construction company and representatives from a local hospital. One attendee stated: "The seminar was very good and to the point. I learnt a lot about the scale of change in relation to these issues."

Paul Knight, Crime Reduction Officer for Sussex Police said that the seminar "was successful in increasing awareness of Hate Incidents and in improving awareness around ways in which businesses might deal with such incidents.”

The Partnership Community Safety Team plan to run future events. Doug Rattray, Hate Crime Team Leader added: "Such seminars are an excellent way to not only get businesses up to date on how Hate Incidents in the workplace affect them but also in signposting businesses to where they can get further help on such issues."

Visit the Sussex Police website at www.sussex.police.uk for news about the latest police operations, and click on “Business Crime” under the heading Key Projects on the Brighton Business Homepage for further information on business crime related initiatives.


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