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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Findings available

Database 2012-2017 on anti-Muslim hatred

This database provides an overview of hate crime, hate speech and discrimination against Muslims and migrants in the EU from 2012 to 2017.
Status: 
Findings available

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 (HLG) 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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Unmasking bias motives in crimes: selected cases of the European Court of Human Rights
December
2018

Unmasking bias motives in crimes: selected cases of the European Court of Human Rights

Paper
This paper discusses the evolution of European Court of Human Rights case law relating to hate crime, providing an update on the most recent rulings. Approaching hate crime from a fundamental rights perspective, it shows how Member State authorities’ duty to effectively investigate the bias motivation of crimes flows from key human rights instruments, such as the European Convention on Human Rights.
Experiences and perceptions of antisemitism - Second survey on discrimination and hate crime against Jews in the EU
December
2018

Experiences and perceptions of antisemitism - Second survey on discrimination and hate crime against Jews in the EU

Report
This report outlines the main findings of FRA’s second survey on Jewish people’s experiences with hate crime, discrimination and antisemitism in the European Union – the biggest survey of Jewish people ever conducted worldwide. Covering 12 EU Member States, the survey reached almost 16,500 individuals who identify as being Jewish. It follows up on the agency’s first survey, conducted in seven countries in 2012.
Antisemitism - Overview of data available in the European Union 2007–2017
November
2018

Antisemitism - Overview of data available in the European Union 2007–2017

Paper
Antisemitism can be expressed in the form of verbal and physical attacks, threats, harassment, discrimination and unequal treatment, property damage and graffiti or other forms of speech or text, including on the internet. The present report provides an overview of data on antisemitism as recorded by international organisations and by official and unofficial sources in the 28 European Union (EU) Member States, based on their own definitions and categorisations.