Half of all hate crimes and hate-related incidents recorded by Gardaí in the Southern region last year happened in Cork city.
Some 40 hate-related incidents were recorded in Cork city in 2021, almost half of the 83 recorded in the Southern Region (Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Clare and Tipperary), and almost a tenth of all hate crimes and hate-related incidents recorded nationally.
An Garda Síochána has published figures on Hate Crimes and Hate Related (non-crime) Incidents reported in 2021. Across the country, 448 incidents were recorded: 389 hate crimes and 59 hate-related (non-crime) incidents.
These are the first annual figures to be released since a new approach to the recording of hate-related discriminatory motives was introduced by An Garda Síochána in October 2020.
Since then, it is possible to record a hate-discriminatory motive on both crime and non-crime incidents on PULSE, the electronic database used by Gardai.
Hate discriminatory motives were recorded on any incidents which were perceived by the victim or any other person to, in whole or in part, be motivated by hostility or prejudice, based on actual or perceived age, disability, race, colour, nationality, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or gender (including gender identity).
19% of all hate-related incidents were recorded in the Southern Region, the second highest of the four regional divisions.
The largest proportion of hate-related incidents (50%) reported in 2021 occurred in the Dublin Metropolitan Region.
Across the other operational regions, 16% of incidents occurred in the North West Region, while 15% occurred in the Eastern region.
The most prevalent discriminatory motive was race (44%), followed by Sexual Orientation (15%) and Nationality (14%). Incidents were recorded across all 9 Discriminatory motives.
Hate motives were evident in a range of crimes in 2021, the largest percentage being Public Order (35%), Minor Assaults (18%) and Criminal Damage (11%).
In Cork city, 12 of the 40 incidents recorded were hate-related Public Order offences.
The number of other types of hate-related offences in Cork city, such as assault, menacing phone calls or murder threats , were all lower than 10.
In order to protect the anonymity of victims and prevent unintentional identification in any case, figures less than 10 were withheld by Gardai.
Due to the change in how incidents are recorded, figures from 2019, the last complete year prior to the introduction of the changes, are not directly comparable to 2021’s figures.
There were 251 hate crimes recorded in 2019, a notable reduction on the 339 hate crimes recorded in 2018. Under these old recording practices, any one of 11 specific hate motives could be recorded on crime incidents (non-crime hate incidents were not captured at that time).
Assistant Commissioner Paula Hilman, whose remit includes the Garda National Diversity and Integration Unit, welcomed the publication of these statistics, stating that the new definitions and recording practices "are enabling us to gain greater insight into these discriminatory motives and respond accordingly”.
“I want to thank that wider community, NGOs and the media for consistently highlighting the issue of hate crime, and I urge any person who has experienced or observed prejudice to come forward and report those incidents to us. I can assure people that complaints will be dealt with thoroughly and professionally,” she added.