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Hate Crime

Police Scotland defines Hate Crime as crimes motivated by malice or ill will towards a social group by disability, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation, or transgender identity. Hate crimes are abhorrent and target marginalised and vulnerable members of our communities with devastating effect on both victims and their families.

Scottish Government defines Hate Crime as crime committed against a person or property that is motivated by ‘malice or ill-will towards an identifiable social group’.  It is likely that you are a victim of a hate crime if you believe that someone has targeted you because of their prejudice against an aspect of your identity. In Scotland, the law recognises hate crimes as crimes motivated by prejudice based on:

  • Disability
    • crimes motivated by prejudice based on physical disability, learning disability, mental health difficulty and sensory impairment such as Deafness, hearing or sight loss.
  • Race 
    • crime motivated by prejudice based on ethnicity, nationality, skin colour and other characteristics associated with ethnicity, for example styles of dress, headwear etc.
  • Religion or belief
    • crime motivated by prejudice based on religion or faith such as sectarian conflicts between different sects, in addition to attacks based on prejudice against other religions.
  • Sexual orientation
    • crimes motivated by prejudice against lesbians, gay and bisexual people.
  • Transgender identity
    • crimes motivated by prejudice against someone who expresses their gender identity as Transgender.

Examples of Hate incidents =

  • verbal abuse
  • jokes
  • written abuse
  • threats
  • assault
  • property damage
  • incidents online
  • offensive graffiti

Reporting Hate Crime =

  • Report online: Police Scotland
  • Visit local police station
  • Call Fife Council on 03451 55 00 22 or the police non-emergency phone number outwith these times on 101
  • Through a Third Party Reporting Centre
  • In an emergency call 999



Human Resources

University of St Andrews
The Old Burgh School

Abbey Walk
St Andrews
KY16 9LB
Scotland, United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)1334 463096
Fax:+44 (0)1334 462570