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Out in the_open_dhi_manifesto

  1. 1. Out inthe openTackling disability-related harassmentA manifesto forchange
  2. 2. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change ContentsForeword Page 3Introduction Page 5Following up the Commission’s inquiry Page 6Government responses Page 7Developing the manifesto for change Page 11Section 1: Reporting, recording and recognition Page 12Section 2: Addressing gaps in legislation and policy Page 16Section 3: Ensuring adequate support and advocacy Page 19Section 4: Improved practice and shared learning Page 21Section 5: Redress and accessing justice Page 23Section 6: Prevention, deterrence and understanding motivation Page 25Section 7: Transparency, accountability and involvement Page 29Evaluating results Page 322
  3. 3. www.equalityhumanrights.comForewordby Mike SmithLead Commissioner for the Inquiry into disability-related harassment,Equality and Human Rights CommissionOne year on from the report of our original shows that more people feel able to report it,inquiry – Hidden in plain sight – and the and we need more reporting to demonstratecircuit of speaking events that followed, it the true scale of this issue. But it could alsowould be easy to imagine that disability- suggest that the underlying incidence of therelated harassment is finally being problem has got worse.understood and tackled. I am also concerned about the apparentThe responses from government and ‘postcode lottery’ in recording patterns,authorities discussed in this ‘Manifesto for with a variation of 255 cases inchange’ show that many are already taking Leicestershire down to just four in somesignificant steps and more are planned, as police force areas, with 12 forces2 recordingset out in the detailed reports of what they less than 10 cases during this period. It isintend to do over the next few years, which difficult not to conclude from these figuresare posted on our website alongside this that some police forces are simply not tryingreport. Together they show progress, hard enough to encourage disabled peopleindividually and collectively, towards to report these incidents or to take themmaking a real difference. seriously when they do.Yet almost every person I talk to who is not Contrast these figures with the Crimepart of the criminal justice or equality sector Survey for England and Wales; they showstill doesn’t appear to recognise what is the number of people experiencing ahappening to disabled people. If you follow disability hate crime in the year to thethe Disability Hate Crime Network – an Spring of 2011 was 65,000. So, just underonline community of disabled people from 3 per cent of hate crimes experienced by disabled people end up being included inacross Britain sharing their experiences – the official figures. This means that foryou will see daily reports of attacks against around 34 out of every 35 incidents ofdisabled people. Day after day, people are disability hate crime, the victim was eitherbeing targeted because of their disability. unable or unwilling to report the hateIt has just been reported that the number crimes committed against them. Thisof disability hate crimes recorded by police could be because, as the same crimeforces in England and Wales for the year survey consistently shows, victims have lowended December 2011 was 1,877.1 This is an expectations about what, if anything,increase of 24.1 per cent on the previous reporting the crime might actually achieve,year, and is the only equality strand to have or it could be that these incidents are notseen an increase in the police recording of recognised as being disability-related evenhate crimes. This could be a good thing if it when they do. There is a long way to go.1 See http://www.report-it.org.uk/files/final_acpo_hate_crime_data_2011_ (revised_oct_2011)_1.pdf2 Excluding the small City of London Police Force. 3
  4. 4. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change It is important to remember that hate crime is only the tip of the iceberg. So-called hate incidents – the name-calling, bullying, and other treatment that wears people down – are what the majority of disabled people experience on a much more frequent basis and can escalate to more serious crimes. It is refreshing to see that at least some parts of the media are picking up on the contradiction between the positive reporting on disability surrounding the 2012 Paralympics, and the day-to-day reality for many disabled people, often labelled as scroungers or benefit cheats or ‘not trying hard enough’. This ‘Manifesto for change’ sets out our revised recommendations for action over the next five years. These have been developed following consultation with a large number of government, national and local bodies who have helped refine and nuance the recommendations to make sure that they work, and to ensure that those organisations own them. The issue of disability-related harassment might be ‘Out in the open’ but it is, most certainly, not yet sorted. It is incumbent upon us all to work to overcome this blight on our society.4
  5. 5. www.equalityhumanrights.comIntroductionResearch on the safety and security It did not cover harassment in theof disabled people conducted by the workplace, which is covered by a separateCommission in 2009 found that violence legislative framework.and hostility is a daily experience for somedisabled people.3 In September 2011, the Commission concluded the formal part of the inquiryThese findings led the Commission when it published the report Hidden into launch its largest inquiry to date. It plain sight.4 This report highlightedanalysed over 500 pieces of evidence and systemic failures by organisations inheld formal hearings with expert witnesses. preventing disability-related harassment and in tackling it effectively when itThe terms of reference for the inquiry happens, and gave draft recommendationswere to investigate the causes of disability- for action.related harassment and the actions ofpublic authorities and public transport In this follow-up to Hidden in plain sight,operators to prevent and eliminate it. we summarise a wide range of formal responses from relevant organisationsThe scope of the inquiry covered: and set out our final recommendations. England, Scotland and Wales The responses are, overall, positive and disability-related harassment carried encouraging. There are some very out by individuals or groups of people, promising signs of action and commitment including strangers, neighbours, from those with the power and acquaintances, friends, family, relatives responsibility to create change. There is less and partners progress so far in terms of measureable practical actions. However, we expect harassment in public places such as significant progress over the next few years streets, parks, schools, leisure facilities, towards achieving better outcomes for all on public transport and in private places disabled people. such as in the home.3 Sin et al. (2009) Disabled people’s experiences of targeted violence and hostility, Equality and Human Rights Commission research report 21.4 Hidden in plain sight: Inquiry into disability-related harassment, Equality and Human Rights Commission (2011). Available at: www.equalityhumanrights.com 5
  6. 6. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change Following up the Commission’s inquiry Hidden in plain sight proposed seven core The Commission will ensure that recommendations and a further 79 more consideration of the findings, and the detailed recommendations. The recommendations from the inquiry, inform Commission put these recommendations our own work and, where appropriate, we will out for a six-month consultation period so monitor the performance of organisations that government, organisations and that have a specific responsibility to tackle individuals could comment on how disability-related harassment. effective they felt they would be in reducing disability-related harassment. During the inquiry we heard evidence from public authorities about serious incidents We wrote to relevant organisations to ask: which had happened in their area. Part 2 of for formal responses to the inquiry’s Hidden in plain sight included reports on recommendations 10 of those cases. Those authorities also provided evidence on the steps they have what they were planning to do differently taken to improve practice in preventing and as a result of the inquiry. dealing with disability-related harassment. We reported on that in Appendix 17 of The approach varied across England, Hidden in plain sight. Alongside issuing Scotland and Wales to fit with the legal, this report we have asked a number of those policy and cultural context in each country. authorities to tell us more about the progress they are making in improving We received 81 formal responses and the practice in their area and to explain how three national governments published they have taken the public sector equality their commitments. These responses, duty into account in doing so. If the taken together, show how our evidence shows that inadequate action has recommendations are likely to be met in been taken to improve, we will consider coming years. The responses are published invoking our formal enforcement powers on the Commission’s website: under the Equality Act 2006 to make www.equalityhumanrights.com. Each authorities take the issues and their response is a public statement by that obligations seriously. organisation of what they have already done to make progress and their commitments We have already committed to conduct a on what they will do in the future. We review in 2015 in our three-year strategic encourage individuals, disabled people’s plan, and we expect organisations to have organisations and others to use these to made significant progress in implementing hold each organisation to account. our recommendations. We also expect that other inspection and regulatory bodies, and Based on the responses, and our own disabled people’s organisations, will review, we have produced a final list of continue to work in their sector or local area 43 strategic recommendations grouped to support relevant organisations to take under seven sections in this report. action and to hold them to account.6
  7. 7. www.equalityhumanrights.comGovernment responsesThe UK Government and the devolved The Commission will be continuingadministrations in Scotland and Wales discussions with government departmentshave responded formally and positively on other areas including:to the Commission’s inquiry. Across thethree countries of Great Britain, there better understanding of the motivationsare different starting points in terms of of perpetrators and societal causeslegislation and policy and consequently of disability-related harassmentdifferent areas of focus. the collection of comprehensive data on disability-related harassment, toThe UK Government improve decision-making and accountabilityThe UK Government’s formal response5 toHidden in plain sight was published on 17 empowering local leadership and otherJuly 2012. It refers to a number of local agents of change to have access tosignificant new policy or legislative the right information and support toapproaches that have been or will be hold authorities to account and makeinfluenced by the inquiry’s change happenrecommendations. addressing cyber-bullyingThe Commission considers the UK the impact of terminology and languageGovernment’s response to be in bringing about cultural change.comprehensive and robust in relation to: Scottish Government the Government’s clear commitment to tackling this issue The policy drivers in Scotland commitments to improving data There is a unique range of distinctive policy collection on the application of section drivers in Scotland directly relevant to the 146 of the Criminal Justice Act and data inquiry: sharing safeguarding measures in health services The Scottish specific equality duties6 require public authorities to set tackling antisocial behaviour in social equality outcomes for all protected housing characteristics by April 2013, gather and a commitment to developing reciprocal act on evidence, involve equality groups reporting arrangements in transport. and assess the impact of all new policies on protected groups. Priorities for the Scottish Government and, through Single Outcome5 Available at: http://odi.dwp.gov.uk/docs/odi-projects/hidden-in-plain-sight.pdf6 See http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/scotland/public-sector-equality-duty/ specific-duty-regulations/ 7
  8. 8. 8
  9. 9. www.equalityhumanrights.com Agreements, local agencies are set with 2002.8 The outcome of this case had a reference to the National Outcomes and wide impact across public authorities in Priorities. Scotland. It became a catalyst for change Reform of the scrutiny landscape,7 with a to the legislative and policy context for shift to a more proportionate, risk-based tackling disability-related harassment and shared scrutiny process. across the nation. Welsh GovernmentThe response in Scotland The Commission set out four areas forFollowing the launch of the inquiry report intervention in Wales:in September 2011, the Commission inScotland concentrated on the sectors A determination to eliminatecentral to effective delivery of the inquiry harassment needs to be shown byrecommendations. These are: leaders. Partnerships to prevent and respond to harassment and share central government effective practice should be encouraged, criminal justice authorities including piloting Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (MARACs). leadership bodies such as the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland and the The new equality duties should be used Association of Directors of Social Work to prioritise tackling disability-related harassment. the audit and scrutiny sector, particularly the Care Inspectorate. A human rights-based approach to safeguarding should be introduced by the Welsh Government.The response from these sectors has beenvery encouraging, with recognition of the Increased reporting and publicscale and seriousness of the challenge. authorities to put in place measures toRespondents have also effectively identified ensure a positive reporting experiencethe legal and policy levers particular and effective support.to Scotland. As a result of our report, in December 2011The Scottish Government’s Health and the National Assembly’s Communities,Well-Being Directorate, Justice Directorate Equality and Local Government Committeeand Finance and Public Reform Directorate held an Inquiry into disability-relatedall submitted formal and positive responses harassment. In its report,9 the Committeeto the Commission’s inquiry. calls on the Welsh Government to set a strategic direction in tackling disability-There has been strong action in some local related harassment by driving through aareas, such as that following the case of the collaborative action plan.‘vulnerable adult’ in Lothian and Borders in7 See http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Government/PublicServiceReform/ IndependentReviewofReg/scrutinyimprovement8 Hidden in plain sight: Inquiry into disability-related harassment, Equality and Human Rights Commission (2011), pp. 26-9. Available at: www.equalityhumanrights.com9 Available at: http://www.senedd.assemblywales.org 9
  10. 10. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change The Commission considers the Welsh adoption of an objective to reduce the Government’s response to be incidence of all forms of violence against comprehensive and strong, particularly women, domestic abuse, ‘honour’-based in relation to: violence, hate crime (including work with stakeholders to take forward disability), bullying and elder abuse an action-focused framework to tackle within the Wales Strategic Equality Plan10 hate crime across the protected commissioning of research Who commits characteristics of race, disability, religion hate crime? (available autumn 2012) or belief, sexual orientation and gender publication of anti-bullying guidance reassignment Respecting others: anti-bullying overview.11 10 Available at: http://wales.gov.uk/topics/equality/equalityactatwork/?lang=en 11 Available at: http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/publications/circulars/ antibullying/?lang=en10
  11. 11. www.equalityhumanrights.comDeveloping themanifesto for changeIn reviewing responses to the draft In each section below, we set out a summaryrecommendations within Hidden in plain of the relevant findings and originalsight, we saw that a number of sector- recommendations from Hidden in plainspecific recommendations were equally sight and our analysis of responses toapplicable to all sectors, and removed these recommendations. Our finalduplicates. recommendations are listed at the end of each section.We have, where relevant, moved from afocus on one sector to wider agencies and Details of how we will evaluate how thesepartnerships. We have also recognised the recommendations have been implementedneed to address a range of de-regulated can be found at ‘Evaluating results’ at theservice providers by changing our focus end of this report.from ‘public authorities’ to ‘authorities’.We have also amended somerecommendations in the light of very usefulfeedback to our consultation, and groupedthem into the following seven sections:1. Reporting, recording and recognition2. Addressing gaps in legislation and policy3. Ensuring adequate support and advocacy4. Improved practice and shared learning5. Redress and accessing justice6. Prevention, deterrence and understanding motivation7. Transparency, accountability and involvementWe are pleased that the majority ofrespondents have already begun todraft their action plans. We realisethese were based on the original draftrecommendations. Our intent is that theserevised recommendations serve as a guidefor the ongoing development of sectoraction plans. 11
  12. 12. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change Section 1: Reporting, recording and recognition What we found Responses received highlighted potential difficulties in a number of key areas, Hidden in plain sight found that under- including data capture and the sharing reporting of disability-related harassment of information across authorities was widespread; that disabled people often and agencies. saw incidents as so commonplace as to be part of daily life and not ‘hate crimes’ and Authorities have indicated that establishing that those receiving reports of harassment whether a victim is disabled is sometimes were failing to ask about disability or see it difficult for police forces in England and as a potential motivation. As a result, the Wales (the legislation to do so already prevalence and impact of disability-related exists in Scotland). Our amended harassment were greatly underestimated. recommendation asks for this data to be included in the data already collected Our original recommendations on other protected characteristics. Hidden in plain sight made a range of draft There were mixed views on our recommendations to tackle these issues. recommendation about the language of These included identifying and recording ‘hate crime’. The UK Government rejected whether a victim is disabled, changes to this recommendation on the basis that it did the use of language on hate crime and on not fit within a widely internationally and special measures, and ensuring robust publically recognised framework for hate safeguarding alerts and accessible crime. The Commission recognises this reporting systems for residents living problem and the associated problem of in institutions. tackling multiple-identity hate crimes but we maintain the view, based on the evidence Response to the presented to us, that understanding of and recommendations identification with ‘hate crime’ language is a barrier for both victims and others in The Commission received a positive recognising, reporting and tackling the response to these recommendations breadth of experiences of disability-related from most organisations. There was harassment. On that basis, we have consensus that greater reporting, recording incorporated the removal of the barriers and recognition are required to address created by terminology into a general disability-related harassment. Although recommendation on the removal of barriers there were some questions about the to reporting. practicalities of implementation, there were encouraging commitments to action. In relation to our recommendation on use of the term ‘special measures’, the UK Government helpfully provided12
  13. 13. www.equalityhumanrights.comclarification. We have removed this harassment and the outcomes andrecommendation and replaced it with a consequences for perpetrators. This couldgeneral one that requires the removal of act as a deterrent to perpetrators and helpbarriers for disabled people through all build the confidence of disabled peoplestages of the process of accessing justice, to report.and in later sections we explain how thiswill be realised. It remains a key priority for the Commission to encourage furtherSummary of our findings exploration of the problems and solutions to recording and reporting, particularlyThere has been some significant progress at a local level, in the promising work onin recognising and addressing the barriers partnerships identified through the formalto reporting. We recognise the problems in responses. The new Police and Crimelinking up data collection systems and commissioners in England could playappreciate that this can only be addressed an important role here.as part of a longer-term strategy. There arealso some very promising developments in Final recommendationsthe area of training. Having reviewed the responses, theWe welcome the Government response Commission has agreed the followingon cyber-bullying in education, however final recommendations under Section 1:cyber-bullying is a wider problem andGovernment should work with a range 1. Authorities should remove barriersof partners to address it. to all disabled people reporting crime, antisocial behaviour or bullying,There has been promising progress by some including ‘cyber-bullying’. Authoritiespolice forces on police call screening for should also consider how theyrepeat victims. However, this is yet to be communicate with disabled peopleeffective across the majority of forces in and use terminology that service usersEngland and Wales, particularly where identify with.repeat calls rather than repeat incidents 2. Staff responding to harassment shouldare used to trigger action. be trained in how to better gather and record personal information aboutOur evidence indicates that incidents may disability in an appropriate andmount up before a first call is made, for sensitive manner.a variety of reasons. A move towardsrecording repeat incidents will enable 3. Authorities should adopt recordingbetter triggers for deploying resources systems that record whether thefor effective early intervention. victim was disabled (along with other protected characteristics), and whetherWe recognise the challenges that recording hostility/prejudice to disability was aand reporting of incidents presents to motivation.organisations, and note the commitment 4. Authorities should recognise theand significant progress made by some potential for escalation and recordorganisations on this issue. We believe this incidents leading up to crimes in orderdata should be publicised, with information to support the implementation ofon action undertaken to challenge preventative actions. 13
  14. 14. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change 5. Health and social care providers should put robust and accessible systems in place so that residents living in institutions can be confident when reporting harassment that they will be treated sensitively. 6. Police call screening should focus on acknowledgement, risk of harm and the number of incidents rather than the number of calls in order to identify and address repeat victimisation. 7. Staff delivering health and social care services to the public should be trained in safeguarding adults and children, including how to refer to appropriate services.14
  15. 15. 15
  16. 16. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change Section 2: Addressing gaps in legislation and policy What we found sentencing in England and Wales for murder motivated by hatred or hostility Hidden in plain sight identified a number of towards disabled (and transgender) victims significant gaps in current legislative equal to sentencing for murder motivated frameworks, including a disparity in by hatred or hostility to the other protected sentencing guidelines for different groups characteristics of race, religion and sexual and an insufficiently robust safeguarding orientation. (This was already covered in referral process that means people are put Scotland under the Offences (Aggravation at risk and criminal acts are not promptly by Prejudice) (Scotland) Act 2009.)12 We referred to the police. have removed this recommendation as it has now been achieved. Our original recommendations In July 2012, the Government published the Hidden in plain sight made a range of draft Care and Support White Paper and the draft recommendations to tackle these issues. Care and Support Bill. These documents set These included a review of eligibility criteria out the Government’s ambitious plans for to increase social interaction and reduce transforming care and support so that social isolation for disabled people, everyone in England can plan and prepare revisions to the ‘No Secrets’ guidance in for their care needs, access high quality care England, statutory recognition of adult when they need it, and exercise choice and safeguarding boards and parity in control over the care they receive. sentencing guidelines for all types of The Bill contains clauses that puts identity-based murders. Safeguarding Adult Boards on a statutory footing, better equipped both to prevent Response to the abuse and to respond when it occurs. Further recommendations clauses ensure local authorities establish and maintain a service to provide advice on how There has been substantial progress in to raise concerns about risk and implementing these recommendations, safeguarding. These reforms will set out a particularly from national governments. clear framework within which organisations We were particularly pleased about the must act which resounds significantly with amendment to Schedule 21 of the Criminal the inquiry recommendations. Justice Act 2003 to achieve parity in sentencing guidelines for identity-based We have retained the recommendations murders. on these important issues in recognition of the fact that at the time of publication of This will amend the Criminal Justice Act this report the amendments are still at the 2003 to make the starting point for Bill stage. 12 See http://www.legislation.gov.uk/asp/2009/8/pdfs/asp_20090008_en.pdf16
  17. 17. www.equalityhumanrights.comGovernment rejected the draft to consider the impact of the publicrecommendation to build reports and plans sector equality duty in tacklingto tackle disability-related harassment into disability-related harassment withingovernment strategies. The Commission their jurisdiction.supports the Government’s role indevolving decision-making to a local Final recommendationslevel, but is still of the view that nationalGovernment strategies should address Having reviewed the responses, thedisability-related harassment and so Commission has agreed the followinghave retained this recommendation. final recommendations under Section 2:Summary of our findings 1. National governments should:We welcome the significant progress and review the adequacy andcommitment made to addressing the gaps effectiveness of the legal frameworkin legislation and policy that support action for offences that are motivated byto tackle disability-related harassment: hostility to disability review all statutory and common law An amendment to the Health and Social restrictions on the public Care Bill on the application of the Human participation of disabled people, and Rights Act; the UK Government restated other laws which unnecessarily and its view that local authority- inappropriately treat disabled people commissioned care services in England differently to others and Wales are covered by the Human ensure government reviews of the Rights Act.13 public sector equality duties facilitate The Welsh Assembly Government’s draft eliminating disability-related Social Services (Wales) Bill is based on a harassment human rights approach. place adult safeguarding boards on a The UK Government’s hate crime plan statutory basis ‘Challenge it, Report it, Stop it’14 will introduce and develop human rights- consider whether there is a case for based approaches to safeguarding changing the law on incitement of hatred on grounds of disability, which falls working with other departments, under the Public Order Act. The plan ensure ownership within and also includes a commitment to placing amongst statutory authorities for Safeguarding Adult Boards on a tackling disability-related statutory basis, and defines the six harassment principles governing the actions of the build reports and plans to tackle boards as empowerment, protection, disability-related harassment into prevention, proportionality, partnership government disability strategies. and accountability. This is in line with our recommendation to all governments13 Specific legislation, almost a decade old, already makes this explicit in Scotland.14 Available at: http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/publications/crime/hate-crime-action- plan/action-plan?view=Binary 17
  18. 18. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change 2. The Ministry of Justice and the wider criminal justice system should ensure that section 146 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 is appropriately, consistently and transparently applied. 3. Authorities should ensure that policy developments on social inclusion incorporate the recommendations from the inquiry recognising the potential link between propensity for social isolation and segregation, taking a social model approach. These should work towards capacity for decision-making being supported, where appropriate, with a human rights-based approach. 4. Eligibility criteria for services should not be focused just on vulnerability or risk of harm, but instead on an individual’s circumstances preventing them from fully achieving their human rights, and targeting resources to enable them to do so. 5. If a disabled person moves in order to avoid disability-related harassment, their security of tenure should not be adversely affected.18
  19. 19. www.equalityhumanrights.comSection 3: Ensuringadequate support andadvocacyWhat we found However, we welcomed governments’ support for this recommendation, theirHidden in plain sight found failings in proposed work to review victims’ services,the provision of special measures15 to help pilots to focus enhanced services to alldisabled or intimidated witnesses give intimidated and vulnerable witnesses andtheir best evidence in court across England, the commitment to build in qualityScotland and Wales. There were also assurance systems to this work. We havesignificant gaps in provision of support retained a focus on accessibility in our finalservices, not just at the reporting stage but recommendations.throughout and beyond the process ofaccessing justice. We acknowledge the difficulties of early identification and follow through of specialOur original recommendations measures but retain this recommendation because of its importance to achievingHidden in plain sight made a range of draft justice.recommendations to tackle these issues.These included: changing the procedure for Summary of our findingsspecial measures, early identification that avictim is disabled and the need for special There have been some very promisingmeasures, the availability of good quality developments in terms of accessibility ofaccessible and independent advocacy services with all authorities demonstratingthroughout a case, and access auditing of a commitment to meeting the needs ofsupport services. disabled people. We recognise that the current economic climate may restrict theResponse to the available resources for addressingrecommendations accessibility of support services. We believe that it is only by undertaking an audit thatA number of authorities indicated that service providers will be able to identifyresources could impact on the ability to resource requirements and build these intoimplement the recommendation to their long-term service plans.undertake access audits of services.15 ‘Special measures’ are a series of provisions that help vulnerable and intimidated witnesses give their best evidence in court and help to relieve some of the stress associated with giving evidence. Special measures apply to prosecution and defense witnesses, but not to the defendant. 19
  20. 20. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change We are disappointed to note slow progress Final recommendations in improving the application of special measures and believe that for special Having reviewed the responses, the measures to aid continuous transition Commission has agreed the following through the criminal justice system, final recommendations under Section 3: authorities and jurisdictions will need to work together. 1. Requirements for special measures should be identified and implemented We realise that the complexity of different at the police investigation stage, and authorities within the criminal justice appropriate reasonable adjustments system means there is work to be done to should be provided throughout align procedures. However, we do feel this investigation and prosecution. Lack of is a critical area for ensuring access to provision of either must not be a barrier justice and sending out important messages to progression of a case nor a rationale to disabled people about their rights to for dropping a case. Authorities should access justice. These include that disability- refer disabled victims of harassment, related harassment will be taken seriously antisocial behaviour and crime to and that victims and witnesses will receive support services (specialist services the support they require to give evidence. if appropriate). 2. Safeguarding Boards and Community We welcome the commitment made by the Safety Partnerships should ensure that Ministry of Justice and Crown Prosecution accessible information and advocacy Service to tackle the challenges of bringing services are available to enable disabled together different systems for the purpose people to understand and exercise of overall monitoring and recording the their rights. application of special measures. 3. Where authorities have obligations to provide or commission local support services, they should take into account their own public sector equality duties at the planning stage, and reflect adequate provision for access to disabled people. 4. The Ministry of Justice should provide a framework for a review of all barriers within the courts system for disabled people whether legal, attitudinal or physical, such as restrictions on jury service or provision of advocacy or interpreter services or access to court buildings. Disabled people should be involved in challenging the barriers.20
  21. 21. www.equalityhumanrights.comSection 4: Improvedpractice and sharedlearningWhat we found Good examples of strong partnership approaches included the commitment fromHidden in plain sight found barriers to joint police forces to work with social housingworking. These included problems with and education providers and transportsharing data, failure to recognise providers to develop links with education‘incidents’16 and a failure to pick up providers for the purposes of preventativeincidents at an early stage. work on disability-related harassment.Our original recommendations Some transport providers and intermediaries indicated that was notHidden in plain sight made a range of draft practical. However, the British Transportrecommendations to tackle these issues. Police and Department of Transport areThese included developing reciprocal taking a lead on this.reporting arrangements between publictransport providers, reviewing the Transport providers identified problemsguidelines for serious case reviews, with referring all allegations of crimesdeveloping and disseminating procedures committed against disabled children andand standards to minimise the risk of adults to the police and reciprocal reportingharassment, developing a strong arrangements. However, the Britishcitizenship and human rights agenda in Transport Police and Department forschools, and ensuring security of tenure for Transport have committed themselves toa disabled person forced to move to avoid support reporting of disability-relateddisability-related harassment. harassment including across deregulated services, and we have adopted this as a finalResponse to the recommendation.recommendations Summary of our findingsWe welcome and have adopted theGovernment’s proposed amendment to Some responses received indicate aour draft recommendation on schools significant move towards joint andpromoting understanding of disability innovative approaches. The Director ofand sharing good practice, which Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer QC, andrecognises the role of national and the Association of Chief Police Officers’local leaders of education. (ACPO) lead officer, Chief Constable Simon16 Hidden in plain sight defined incidents as those experiences deemed to be low level and not recorded as a crime or criminal activity e.g. name calling. 21
  22. 22. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change Cole, have taken very public leading roles 2. Local Authorities should play a lead role within the criminal justice sector. We are in driving local partnerships to deliver on pleased to see this beginning to take preventing and tackling disability- shape in other sectors. related harassment, and all authorities should develop approaches for effective A number of responses were silent on our joint working. recommendation about improved practice 3. Regulators, inspectorates and and shared learning. Given how important ombudsmen, along with senior we found effective joined-up working to be representatives of service providers and in tackling the issue, especially at a local their clients, should work together to level, we call on all authorities to develop devise and disseminate procedures and approaches for more effective joint working. standards which seek to minimise the risk of harassment. The 2012 Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary report17 reflected our 4. Adult safeguarding boards should use conclusion that there is a need for further professional networks to ensure: evidence and stronger data on repeat lessons learnt from local serious case victims and perpetrators. reviews are embedded in training and practice, and shared and For example, while many police forces are evaluated nationally across all now able to ‘flag’ repeat victims, this can authorities only be done on a ‘repeat call’ basis. This will not record those callers who have summaries of serious case reviews experienced repeat victimisation and make are publicly available and their first call some way into experiencing disseminated harassment. Currently only five police educational establishments share forces (out of 44 in England and Wales) continuous developments and consistently question the caller to establish practice in tackling disability-related whether repeat victimisation has occurred. harassment. 5. Serious case reviews should be Final recommendations mandatory for cases involving adults at risk unless proved unnecessary. Having reviewed the responses, the Commission has agreed the following 6. Transport providers should develop final recommendations under Section 4: reciprocal reporting arrangements and work in partnership to address 1. Local agencies and partners should disability-related harassment. review the priority they give to eliminating harassment, and their information sharing systems, using joint intelligence to identify and stop repeat victimisation or repeat perpetrators and prevent further escalation. 17 Available at: http://www.hmic.gov.uk/media/a-step-in-the-right-direction-the- policing-of-anti-social-behaviour.pdf22
  23. 23. www.equalityhumanrights.comSection 5: Redress andaccessing justiceWhat we found Summary of our findingsHidden in plain sight found that very few We have revised our recommendation oncases of disability-related harassment go access to the court system, and disabledthrough the courts; and even when they do, people’s experiences, based on thesentencing does not always follow. There is significant commitment and progressvery limited application of section 146 of the made by Government.Criminal Justice Act 2003,18 a failure toapply special measures properly and cases Responses to the draft recommendationsare often dropped because of perceived were promising. They included awitness credibility. commitment to review the recording of whether disability is a motivating factor inOur original recommendations crimes, to establish whether this is being overlooked currently, and the consistencyHidden in plain sight made a range of draft of application of section 146 of the Criminalrecommendations to tackle these issues. Justice Act.These included: ensuring the seriousnessof the offence, rather than the capacity of We also welcome the UK Government’sthe victim, determines the basis for an proposal to put quality assurance systemsinvestigation; investigation for potential in place to ensure that these commitmentsaggravated offences throughout the are being met.progression of cases, where disabilitymay be a factor, and ensuring that disabled Final recommendationspeople have equitable access to thecourt system. Having reviewed the responses, the Commission has agreed the followingResponse to the final recommendations under Section 5:recommendations 1. The perceived capacity of the victimThe most promising responses throughout should never form the basis for decisionsthe inquiry relate to access to justice. There about police investigation.is currently a dearth of knowledge on the 2. Whenever repeat perpetrators or repeatmotivations of perpetrators of disability- victims are identified, the priority givenrelated harassment and we welcome the UK to solving the case should always beand Wales Governments’ commitments to increased to urgent.begin to address this. This will help policeforces and other agencies begin to develop 3. Crimes motivated in part or in whole byearly intervention measures once profiles hostility/prejudice to disability need toand motivations are better understood. be recognised, investigated and18 See http://www.disabilityhatecrime.org.uk/index.php/cjs/section-146 23
  24. 24. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change prosecuted as such. Where there is 4. Government should undertake an evidence of hostility/prejudice police extensive review of how disabled people should gather evidence to support could be better protected within an prosecution as an aggravated offence adversarial justice system, including utilising section 146 of the Criminal consideration of limiting when the Justice Act where appropriate. victim’s impairment can be used as evidence or in questioning in court.24
  25. 25. www.equalityhumanrights.comSection 6: Prevention,deterrence andunderstanding motivationWhat we found better monitoring of the performance of those responsible for dealing with it.Hidden in plain sight found a lack ofinvestment in research into the motivation We have retained the existingand profile of perpetrators. Equally recommendation but do not define howsignificant, there is no statutory this should be achieved. We acknowledgerequirement to conduct a serious case the Governments point that achievementreview for the murder of a disabled person, of this recommendation can include usingas there is in England and Wales following existing data sources more effectively.the death of a child or adult from domestic Where a review of existing data highlightsviolence. gaps, we expect that Government will fill these.Our original recommendations We were also pleased that the UKHidden in plain sight made a range of draft Government agreed with our draftrecommendations to tackle these issues. recommendation on transport providersThese included: appointment of taking steps to ‘design out’ conflict, forharassment co-ordinators; implementing example between wheelchair users andinterventions to prevent occurrences and those with pushchairs utilising sharedescalation of harassment; understanding spaces on public transport. In reviewing thethe characteristics and motivations of draft recommendations, we recognised thisperpetrators; designing out potential for as an issue that extends beyond transportconflict in transport; commissioning of and we have therefore reworded it toprimary research on the impact of address the new recommendation tosegregated education on attitudes to all architects, planners and designers.disabled people, and research to fill theknowledge and data gaps on disability- The UK Government recognised therelated harassment. benefits of adopting ‘lesson learned reviews’ and the sharing of good practice.Response to therecommendations The Department for Education did not agree with the recommendation aboutThe UK Government partially agreed with primary research into the impact of non-our recommendation that definitive data inclusive schooling for disabled pupils.should be available to spell out the scale,severity and nature of disability-related There were also gaps in responses fromharassment and that this would enable government departments on the effective 25
  26. 26. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change dissemination of learning from serious the UK cross-government hate crime case reviews, other than in the ‘case of programme) and are better placed to the vulnerable adult’ in Scotland. There respond. was also some disagreement with the recommendations from the social Research will allow authorities to develop care sector. an in-depth understanding of motivation of perpetrators. The Commission would like to see further progress on sharing of lessons learnt from We have had some promising responses serious case reviews, across authorities to learning more about perpetration and geographical areas. and motivation. We welcome the UK Government’s commitment in this area and We recognise the challenge this look forward to reviewing the outcomes. recommendation represents but have retained it because progress on We welcome the significant gains the new communication and learning will be sentencing powers bring. In order to be even more crucial when power is an effective deterrent, it is important the devolved to a local level. criminal justice authorities make full use of the opportunities these bring to Summary of our findings tackle disability-related harassment. Consideration is also needed on whether A significant issue for the inquiry was that specific aggravated/incitement offences the new sentencing guidelines in England would act as a further deterrent. and Wales should be used to enable monitoring and evaluation of consistency The UK Government has recognised the of sentencing for disability-related link between bullying and harassment and harassment offences. The response from strengthened teachers’ powers to tackle the Ministry of Justice was that this is poor behaviour and bullying. already possible. The Commission has removed reference to the new sentencing However, they have rejected our guidelines from the final recommendation recommendation for the Department for but kept the reference to monitoring Education to commission research on and evaluation. the impact of segregated education. The Government made the point that quality of We were very pleased that the UK provision rather than setting is important. Government agreed with our However, the Commission believes that recommendation that authorities and setting may also be important and that agencies should include provisions against separating disabled children from their disability-related harassment within peers at an early stage may have a long-term tenancy agreements and in taking action impact. We suspect that this could be in against breaches. terms of social isolation and resilience of disabled people, attitudes among non- We have changed the responsibility for disabled children and adults, and the the recommendation on investment in capacity for positive interaction. We research from the police to national therefore believe research on this would governments. This is because governments be beneficial. have already taken a lead (for example in26
  27. 27. www.equalityhumanrights.comFinal recommendations identify and implement interventions to prevent harassment occurring inHaving reviewed the responses, the the first place and develop responsesCommission has agreed the following to prevent escalation. This shouldfinal recommendations under Section 6: include using legal and non-legal sanctions as deterrents to would-be1. National governments should take the lead perpetrators, such as provisions in developing collective understanding against disability-related harassment of the motivations of perpetrators of within tenancy agreements disability-related harassment, including ensure that perpetrators of for the purposes of prevention, profiling harassment face consequences and and early intervention. that these are properly implemented.2. The Department for Education and 5. Authorities should identify and devolved administrations in Scotland implement ways to design out potential and Wales should review existing for conflict in use of shared space within evidence on the extent to which environmental infrastructures. segregated education (or inadequately supported integrated education) affects 6. Police forces should develop an in-depth the ability of disabled children to be understanding of the characteristics and included within mainstream society. motivations of perpetrators, design local They should also consider evidence on prevention strategies accordingly and the extent to which segregation adversely evidence their effectiveness. affects non-disabled people’s views of 7. Schools and colleges should develop disability and disabled people. Where material for helping students sufficient primary evidence is understand disabled people and the unavailable, they should consider social model of disability, and the commissioning new research. prejudice that disabled people face3. Public authorities should use the public within society. The materials should sector equality duty as a framework for encourage a better understanding and helping promote positive images of respect for diversity and difference and disabled people and tackle the low help students know what to do when representation of disabled people across they see others perpetrating bullying all areas of public life. and harassment, both in school and outside (on public transport, in public4. All authorities should: places, etc). develop, implement and review 8. Schools and colleges should ensure awareness raising campaigns to disabled pupils and those with special encourage victims and witnesses of educational needs (SEN) are able to disability-related harassment to come participate in all school/college and forward after-school/college activities on an encourage all individuals and equal basis with non-disabled pupils organisations to recognise, report (mainstreaming as a prevention). and respond to any incidences of disability-related harassment they may encounter 27
  28. 28. 28
  29. 29. www.equalityhumanrights.comSection 7: Transparency,accountability andinvolvementWhat we found These included:Hidden in plain sight found that the the availability of comprehensive data toabsence of data is a major problem to enable performance monitoringidentifying, preventing and tackling the use of the new sentencing guidelinesdisability-related harassment. This makes in England and Wales to monitorit harder for individuals and organisations consistency of sentencingat a local level to hold authorities toaccount for their performance. the review of no-criming and ‘motiveless’ proceduresIn addition, regulators, inspectorates, the ability to make limiting judgementsombudsmen and authorities themselves where schools under-perform inneed to better understand the nature of equality-related areas e.g. identity-basedthe problem in order to address it, and bullyingthe collation of relevant data will helpidentify where and how to best implement that regulators should includenecessary changes. performance measures for dealing with disability-related harassment and otherThere is already promising progress in the forms of hate crimecriminal justice sector from inspectorates regulators intervening in serious casesin starting to identify the nature of the of repeat disability-related harassmentproblem, but as yet little is evident across the identification of hate ‘crime’ and hateother sectors. ‘incident’ levels within crime figures.Schools are hugely important in shapingand changing young people’s attitudes Response to thetowards disabled people. Their recommendationsinterpretation and application of thenational curriculum can make a significant We recognise that it would be difficult toimpact on the inclusion of disabled people report on historic data and see the newin everyday life. sentencing guidelines as an opportunity to begin to collect and evaluate current andOur original recommendations future data to inform future policy.Hidden in plain sight made a range of draft We have retained the recommendation thatrecommendations to tackle these issues. all authorities should have monitoring 29
  30. 30. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change systems in place to record details about developing more effective deterrents victims, alleged perpetrators, the nature of will remain key priorities for tackling incidents and repeated harassment. disability-related harassment. However, we recognise the significant resource implications of this We recognise the importance of effectively recommendation and welcome the feasibility using existing data and research but also study proposed by the UK Government. believe that an additional investment in new research to address the gaps in ACPO and the National Policing intelligence on disability-related Improvement Agency, in their response, harassment could potentially realise stated that all forces work within the similar benefits to that of work on domestic framework of the NCRS (Home Office violence. Counting Rules for Recorded Crime) in relation to recording incidents as crimes and Final recommendations when a recorded crime is re-classified or deleted – ‘no-criming’.19 Forces are audited Having reviewed the responses, the for compliance on this and on the quality of Commission has agreed the following final their data. The recommendation around no- recommendations under Section 7: criming has been retained but re-worded slightly to help pick up disability-related 1. Leaders of authorities and elected harassment hidden within other crime data representatives should show strong such as domestic violence, rape and sexual personal commitment, ownership and assault in order to help properly understand determination to deliver change. the scale of the issue. 2. Authorities should: Following clarification from regulators and proactively work with disabled people inspectors we have amended the and their representative organisations recommendation that regulators should to identify where risks of disability- always intervene in serious disability- related harassment are higher and related incidents leading to death take appropriate action to address it or significant injury. Our new proactively engage with disabled recommendation refers to the need for people to improve services and regulators and inspectors to be satisfied practice on preventing and tackling that action is taken by the appropriate disability-related harassment, agency, and to intervene when it is not. ensuring the provision of reasonable adjustments to aid involvement and Summary of our findings participation. 3. Authorities should collect and share data We understand that the progress of the about victim(s), alleged perpetrator(s), localism agenda will ensure that local nature of incident(s) and repeat offending. agencies dictate local priorities and that national regulation will play a much- reduced role. Preventative work, understanding perpetrators and 19 ‘No-criming’ is the term used for actions taken when it is established that a crime did not in fact occur.30
  31. 31. www.equalityhumanrights.com4. Regulators, inspectorates and 6. Police should review their rates of ‘no- ombudsmen should: criming’ where the victim is disabled, ensure that comprehensive data is across all crime types, and address any collected and shared which spells issues (i.e. disbelief) that may emerge out the scale, severity and nature of as a result. disability-related harassment within 7. Disabled people should be involved in localities public transport policy development ensure that application of section 146 and transport providers should work of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 is in partnership with criminal justice monitored, evaluated and reported on authorities to reduce risk on and around to ensure appropriate application is transport provision. considered in all cases. 8. Regeneration and social housing design5. Regulators, inspectorates and and planning should involve disabled ombudsmen should: people at planning stages in order to help ‘design out crime’ from future limit judgements of inspection and developments. regulation by performance on equality objectives, including measures taken 9. The Ministry of Justice should encourage to prevent and tackle disability- the publication of accessible performance related harassment. Poor performers statistics that clearly identify: should be identified and sanctioned if the number of reported incidents no improvement is apparent within a recorded as crimes reasonable period of time the number of reported incidents ensure their responses to harassment resulting in prosecution are joined-up and use common harassment crime and harassment standards and criteria for its incident levels within crime figures identification the performance of local agencies and ensure a proportionate intervention partnerships in addressing harassment when a serious or repeat case of disability-related harassment service guarantees. emerges within their sector. 31
  32. 32. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change Evaluating results The Commission acknowledges the difficult Schedule economic climate in which authorities are working and the policy and structural October 2012 – baseline measures changes that are taking place. These include agreed the moves towards localism and new September 2013 – at the end of year one commissioned and locally managed we will review progress against the initial police, health care and other services. baseline measures and publish a review on the initial response by authorities to The Commission believes implementation the inquiry’s recommendations of the final recommendations will deliver the changes required to ensure disability- September 2015 – at the end of year three related harassment is prevented where we will update our review of changes possible and dealt with effectively when against the baseline data and publish a it does occur. further review to assess the extent to which our recommendations have been Current data availability does not provide implemented by the relevant authorities a full picture of disability-related September 2017 – at the end of year five harassment. This is addressed within our we will conduct a final review of changes recommendations, and we are committed in the baseline data, assess the ultimate to following up in a fuller review in 2015 impact of the inquiry and publish a final how and where those recommendations review of the inquiry. have been acted upon to enable measurement of authorities’ response to disability-related harassment. The Commission proposes to evaluate the emerging impact of the inquiry at various points over the five year period following the launch of this Manifesto:32
  33. 33. www.equalityhumanrights.comOutcome measures This data will be compared to that compiled and published by ACPO on those hateAt each stage of the evaluation, the crimes which have been recorded by policeCommission will analyse future waves forces in England and Wales.of Crime Survey for England and Wales(CSEW)20 data to monitor: This will be supplemented by CSEW data on: the overall incidence of disability-related the overall crime rates experienced by harassment (defined as those incidents people with impairments analysed by the which the victim felt were motivated by age of the victim factors relating to their impairment)21 disabled people’s fears about being a the report rate of such hate crimes to victim of crime (including their the police and other authorities 22 perceptions of safety) the main reasons given by respondents victim satisfaction with police actions in for not reporting incidents of hate crime dealing with incidents which appeared to the police and other authorities.23 motivated by a strand characteristic.2420 The Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) is the new name for the British Crime Survey. CSEW is a face-to-face victimisations survey in which people resident in households in England and Wales, aged 16 and over, are asked about their experiences of crime in the 12 months prior to interview.21 Based on the following question (for all who mentioned an incident): ‘Looking at the things on this card do you think the incident was motivated by the offender’s attitude towards any of these factors? Your religion or religious beliefs Your sexuality or sexual orientation Your age Your gender Any disability you may have Don’t know None of these’ (respondents can select all that apply) The responses to this from the CSEW will be grossed up using demographic data to provide an overall estimate of the incidence of crimes against disabled people which were motivated by their disability.22 Proportion of CSEW hate crime incidents reported to the police (or came to be known about via other means). Because data on report rates are very small sample sizes overall, this will be monitored for all strands.23 Because data on report rates and the reasons for non-reporting are based on very small sample sizes overall, this will be monitored for all strands.24 This will be measured using CSEW data relating to victim satisfaction with the police handling of crime incidents for crime in general and for those motivated by the factors listed in footnote 21. Again, as a result of sample size issues, this monitoring will be for all strands. 33
  34. 34. Tackling disability-related harassment – A manifesto for change Existing Commission research25 will be Next steps used to set the baseline for each of the above measures, and changes in them will be To measure progress and drive the agenda reviewed in 2013, 2015 and 2017. for the inquiry recommendations the In particular, the Commission will be Commission will: looking for a reduction in the current gap encourage, guide and monitor the between the underlying incidence of progress of public authorities in meeting disability-related harassment, the number their equality objectives, including in of such incidents that are being reported by relation to their devolved contexts victims and the number recorded by police where different and ultimately prosecuted. monitor progress made towards compliance with the Human Rights Act The Commission has chosen to use the and the UNCRPD in respect of CSEW because it believes it to be the best safeguarding and disability-related data source, at this time, for estimating the harassment underlying incidence of various forms of work with adult protection professionals crime and for tracking trends in these in Scotland and Wales at the local level over time. to capture useful learning. However it notes that, as is discussed in To measure progress and drive the agenda, Home Office (2012, pp. 16-17),26 there are we expect governments, public authorities various factors which may lead it to either and leadership organisations to: under- or over-record the incidence of hate use the Human Rights Act 1998 and the crimes. These may include, for example, public sector equality duties as enabling a lack of understanding of the concept by frameworks for data gathering, sharing respondents or other factors which may and analysis, identifying priorities and render an individual to be more likely to involving service users from the outset become a victim of crime that they may in developing and implementing policy attribute to their personal strand characteristics. demonstrate that the partially hidden and under-reported issue of crime and As well as the evaluation measures listed harassment targeting disabled people above we will also be using the equality is effectively addressed, and duties, the Human Rights Act and the demonstrate commitment, clarity United Nations Convention on the Rights of and transparency in setting clearly People with Disabilities (UNCRPD) to understood and shared equality monitor progress. outcomes for people and communities at risk of harm. 25 Some of these can be found in two recent Commission Briefing Papers. One, by Nocon et al. (2011) analyses disabled people’s experiences of, and concerns about, crime. This can be downloaded from: http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/uploaded_files/ disabilityfi/briefing_paper_3_new.pdf The other, by Botcherby et al. (2011), provides a comparison of the experiences and concerns about crime for several equality strands. This paper can be downloaded from: http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/uploaded_files/research/bp4.pdf 26 See http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/publications/science-research-statistics/research- statistics/crime-research/hosb0612/hosb0612?view=Binary34
  35. 35. www.equalityhumanrights.comwww.equalityhumanrights.comThe Commission’s publications are available to download on our website:www.equalityhumanrights.com. If you are an organisation and would like to discussthe option of accessing a publication in an alternative format or language please contactengagementdesk@equalityhumanrights.com. If you are an individual please contact theEquality Advisory and Support Service (EASS) using the contact methods below.Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS)The Equality Advisory Support Service has replaced the Equality and Human RightsCommission Helpline. It gives free advice, information and guidance to individuals onequality, discrimination and human rights issues.Telephone: 0800 444 205Textphone: 0800 444 206Opening hours:09:00 to 20:00 Monday to Friday10:00 to 14:00 SaturdayWebsite: www.equalityadvisoryservice.comPost: FREEPOST Equality Advisory Support Service FPN4431 Equality and Human Rights CommissionOctober 2012ISBN 978 1 84206 466 5Artwork by Epigramwww.epigram.co.uk 35
  36. 36. www.equalityhumanrights.com