Racist incidents fall for fourth year in Scotland

  • 12 June 2012
  • From the section Scotland
police jacket, generic
Image caption The number of racist incidents reported to police has fallen again

The number of racist incidents reported to the police in Scotland has fallen for the fourth year on the run, according to the latest statistics.

People of Asian origin were targeted in about 46% of the incidents.

Police recorded 4,907 cases in 2010-11 , down from the 4,960 the previous year and 8% lower than the 2006-07 figure.

A racist incident is defined by the Scottish government as any incident "perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person".

The government gave a cautious welcome to the latest statistics.

Community Safety Minister Roseanna Cunningham warned against complacency in light of Crown Office prosecution statistics which showed there had been a rise in the number of charges for racism and other forms of hatred reported to the procurator fiscal in 2011-12.

She said: "Hatred of any kind has no place in modern Scotland and we need to do everything we can to stop it wherever and whenever it occurs, whilst tackling the root causes.

"While these figures show a decrease in incidents in 2010-11, we cannot be complacent, particularly as we saw new prosecution figures being published last month which show an increase in racist charges this year.

"That is why we must continue with the work we are doing to tackle racism and hatred in all its forms whilst constantly looking at new ways of getting across the message to the next generation of young Scots."

Of the 46% of victims who classed themselves as Asian, 23.31% said they were from a Pakistani background.

Just over 17% of recorded victims classified themselves as white British.

Where information on perpetrators was available, 82% were white British, while 96% were of any white origin.

Of the cases in which age and gender was known in 2010-11, 46% of the perpetrators were aged 20 or under.

Racist incidents most commonly occurred on Friday and Saturday nights, and a third of them took place in the street.

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