Hate crime

Violence and offences motivated by racism, xenophobia, religious intolerance, or by bias against a person’s disability, sexual orientation or gender identity are all examples of hate crime.

These crimes can affect anyone in society. But whoever the victim is, such offences harm not only the individual targeted but also strike at the heart of EU commitments to democracy and the fundamental rights of equality and non-discrimination. 

To combat hate crime, the EU and its Member States need to make these crimes more visible and hold perpetrators to account. Numerous rulings by the European Court of Human Rights oblige countries to ‘unmask’ the bias motivation behind criminal offences.

Efforts to form targeted policies for combating hate crime are hampered by under-recording, ie the fact that few EU Member States collect comprehensive data on such offences. In addition, a lack of trust in the law enforcement and criminal justice systems means that the majority of hate crime victims do not report their experiences, leading to under-reporting. FRA’s work documents both of these gaps in data collection, as well as the extent of prejudice against groups such as Roma, LGBT, Muslims, and migrant communities. At the same time, it makes recommendations on how the situation could be improved.

Article 1 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights guarantees the right to human dignity, while Article 10 stipulates the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. Article 21 prohibits discrimination based on any ground, including sex, ethnic origin, religion, sexual orientation or disability.

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Status: 
Ongoing

Subgroup on methodologies for recording and collecting data on hate crime

In 2016 the European Commission asked the FRA to join its High Level Group to combat racism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance, and to coordinate a specific subgroup of the HLG that will work to develop methodologies for recording and collecting data on hate crime.

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Second European Union Minorities and Discrimination Survey - Main results
December
2017

Second European Union Minorities and Discrimination Survey - Main results

Report
Seventeen years after adoption of EU laws that forbid discrimination, immigrants, descendants of immigrants, and minority ethnic groups continue to face widespread discrimination across the EU and in all areas of life – most often when seeking employment. For many, discrimination is a recurring experience. This is just one of the findings of FRA’s second European Union Minorities and Discrimination Survey (EU-MIDIS II), which collected information from over 25,500 respondents with different ethnic minority and immigrant backgrounds across all 28 EU Member States.
Fundamental Rights Report 2017
May
2017

Fundamental Rights Report 2017

Annual report
Diverse efforts at both EU and national levels sought to bolster fundamental rights protection in 2016, while some measures threatened to undermine such protection.