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Racist incidents fall by 14%

The number of racist incidents recorded by the police in Scotland decreased by 14% in 2012-13, according to the latest official Racist Incidents Statistics published by Scotland’s Chief Statistician.

The publication, which presents the latest figures on racist incidents recorded by the eight legacy police forces, reveals that:

  • The number of racist incidents recorded by the police in Scotland decreased by 14%, with 4,628 incidents recorded in 2012-13, compared to the 5,389 in 2011-12. This continues the generally decreasing trend seen since 2006-07.
  • In 2012-13, 96% of racist incidents recorded by the police resulted in one or more crimes being recorded. A total of 5,228 crimes were recorded as part of racist incidents in 2012-13, a 19% decrease on the 6,472 crimes recorded in 2011-12.
  • Men were almost three times more likely to be the victim of a racist incident than women.

The definition of “racist incident” used in the report is that given by Sir William MacPherson in his report on the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry, which is “any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person.”

The fall in racist incidents recorded was welcomed by the Lord Advocate Frank Mulholland QC, who said:

“The decreasing trend generally is welcomed but I too would warn against complacency.

“It was interesting to note that many of the racists incidents recorded were committed in the street on a Friday and Saturday night. It is my view that many racially motivated offences are linked to social disorder and this is a cause for concern for law enforcement.”

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