A special competition for young people designed to highlight issues around hate crime has been launched.
Organised by the West Oxfordshire Community Safety Partnership (WOCSP), the aim is to create a piece of work to inspire and educate with participants learning about the issues facing people who suffer hate crime and discrimination.
This could be a video, song, poem, play, short story, live performance, artwork, photography or even a meme.
Participants need to be aged between 11 and 16 with themes focusing on discrimination, experiencing and reporting hate crime and accessing support.
Cllr Merilyn Davies, Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing at WOCSP member organisation West Oxfordshire District Council, said: “Hate crime should never be tolerated at any level and it is important that our young people understand it and know what to do if they are a victim or witness it.
“This competition is an excellent way of channelling young people’s natural creativity and helping educate them about hate crime, why it is wrong and how to report it. I’m really looking forward to seeing the results.”
The West Oxfordshire Community Safety Partnership (WOCSP) brings together local organisations including Thames Valley Police, Oxfordshire County Council, voluntary and community sector groups and housing organisations.
Partners share a goal of creating safer communities in which to live, work and visit. They aim to achieve this by pooling skills, knowledge and techniques to prevent and reduce crime, disorder and fear of crime.
Superintendent Emma Garside, Commander for Cherwell and West Oxfordshire local policing area said: “Hate crimes can have serious, long term physical, emotional and financial effects on the lives of those who experience them.
“They can happen anywhere, even online and can take many forms, including threats, intimidation, damage to property and physical attacks.
“No one should ever be the victim of hate crime. This competition is a great way to engage young people with this sensitive and complex issue.”
The competition launched on 2 February 2021 and will run until 21 February 2021. The first prize will be a £75 voucher for an organisation of the entrant’s choice. Second and third prizes of £50 and £25 vouchers will also be awarded.
Anyone wanting more information and to enter the competition should see: https://www.westoxon.gov.uk/hatecrimecompetition