Housing and Hate Crime Knowledge Exchange: Improving victim support and preventing hate

Lead academic(s)

Kusminder Chahal, Senior Research Fellow, Faculty of Business, Law and Social Sciences

Background to engagement activity

The UK Government's Hate Crime Strategy recognises the need for sharing expertise and experience within and across sectors to build an evidence base of hate crime. This project responds to that by identifying and synthesising relevant research, good practice and resources that housing practitioners can apply to their hate crime prevention work. By working with key social housing national networks and housing providers a link between research and evidence on hate crime can be made available and relevant to the work of housing practitioners and decision-makers.

Engagement activity undertaken

Kusminder was commissioned to organise and create Housing and Hate Crime Knowledge Exchange activities. The project aims to synthesise housing and hate crime research knowledge that can be used by housing practitioners, managers and leaders to enable an informed approach to victim support, prevent hate and increase reporting.

The project connected social housing providers and national networks to hate crime with current research messages and findings. This promoted an evidence-based response to working with victims, developing policy responses and preventing hate.

Activities involved identifying and building a network of housing practitioners, the synthesis of current research and policy evidence on hate crime, writing expert briefings for practitioners on hate crime from the research evidence and will be developing a toolkit for housing practitioners.

Two conferences were held in Hate Crime Awareness Week (October 2019, in partnership with Race Equality Foundation and October 2020, in partnership with Housing Diversity Network). The 2019 conference led to the emergence of a network of over 30 practitioners engaged in responding to hate crime. The conference focused on identifying the needs of housing practitioners to respond to hate and to apply the learning to develop a hate crime toolkit. Over 70% of conference participants reported that the event exceeded or greatly exceeded their expectations. The 2020 conference exchanged knowledge and information to raise awareness and improve practice. 

Knowledge transferred

The project has raised awareness of housing based responses to hate crime by working with national networks of housing practitioners. This has led to writing blogs and articles which have further disseminated essential knowledge to the community of practice. An article on hate crime and housing written for 'The Governor', distributed to all local authority Directors of Housing and all housing association Chief Executives, is estimated to have reached over 2,000 readers. A practical resource on hate crime victim support based on synthesised evidence was commissioned by the Chartered Institute of Housing as part of their ‘How to…’ series.

Evidence of impact

The project has enhanced BCU’s profile on hate crime and developed new relationships with wider networks. This includes a partnership with Housing Diversity Network which will lead to further knowledge exchange activities and on-going working links with Race Equality Foundation and the Chartered Institute of Housing. The emerging 30 strong network of practitioners, feedback from conference participants and organisers, and on-going engagement with housing practitioners indicates the activities are providing a valuable contribution to professional practice and providing further opportunities for knowledge exchange and new partnerships. 

Dates of activity

2019 - 2020 (ongoing)

More information can be found at the following pages: