7th December 2021
Winners of hate crime competition offer positive ways forward
Two young Sandwell people – Aimee and George – have won a Safer Sandwell Partnership competition to raise awareness of hate crime.
The competition, launched during National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2021 in October, asked young people to produce a poem or piece of artwork about hate crime.
What is hate crime?
A hate crime is any criminal offence which is perceived by the victim or any other person to be motivated by hostility or prejudice towards a person based on their:
National Hate Crime Awareness Week aims to bring people together to stand in solidarity with those affected by hate crime, to remember those we have lost, and support those who need ongoing support.
George and Aimee are students at Q3 Academy in Great Barr, and their winning entries are shown above, left and right respectively.
Aimee, winner of the age 15-18 category, said: “As a half-Indian LGBT+ female, I sometimes face indifferences in society and I think it’s important to talk about acceptance. Some people may have bias that they aren’t aware of and hopefully my poem might make people think differently and realise that deep down we’re all equal.”
George, winner of the age 11-14 category, said: “Having a little brother who is disabled I am aware of the amount of discrimination that people face for being different, this is why I entered the competition. In the picture, with all the hands I wanted to show that we may all be different but when we unite as one we can make the world a better place.”
Councillor Bob Piper, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for community safety, said: “Hate crime can traumatise and terrify those who experience it, leading to negative effects on their health and wellbeing, and those of their families and friends.
“Aimee and George’s brilliant entries draw on their own experiences, which give the artworks added resonance, and they each offer a positive way forward for our communities in Sandwell.”
Councillor Richard McVittie, cabinet adviser on crime and community safety, said: “Hate crimes can have a devastating impact on individuals and entire communities. There’s no place for hate here in Sandwell and we must stamp it out.
“Aimee and George’s creative responses offer an emphatic ‘no to hate’ and ‘hope for change’, messages we can all appreciate.”
For more information about hate crime, visit: https://www.sandwell.gov.uk/hatecrime
The photograph shows, from left to right,