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Commentary: Citizens can help fight hate

Online reporting of crimes will help prevent hateful behaviour, say police

Police officers in the district and across the province continue to do excellent work identifying and targeting criminals, both in the case of persons crimes such as assaults and property crimes such as break and enters.

Due to the fine efforts those officers, residents in Alberta’s rural and urban areas enjoy some of safest and most secure communities in all of Canada.

And now a newly-launched initiative will allow citizens to help police by reporting hate-crimes and hate-motivated incidents, bringing offenders to the attention of police and the courts. 

Starting this week, the Online Crime Reporting portal is available on the Alberta RCMP website and through the Alberta RCMP app.

“Alberta RCMP firmly believes in bias-free policing and ensuring that all Albertans feel safe,” says Cpl. Mohamad Khaled, Alberta RCMP Hate Crimes coordinator. “Part of feeling safe is feeling seen and heard, that is why Alberta RCMP works directly with marginalized people and communities to ensure their needs are met.

“It’s important to report hate-motivated incidents and crimes because it allows police to stay informed about what is impacting communities. This is vital in order to provide support and create proactive measures to keep all Albertans safe.”

A hate-crime is an criminal offence motivated by bias, or prejudice towards a person or group based on colour, race, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, sexual identity, gender identity or expression, mental or physical disability, or any other similar factor.

The new reporting option allows for the gathering of information about hate-motivated incidents, information about subjects involved in hateful activities, as well as opportunities for intervention to prevent the escalation of hateful behaviour, he said.

To report a hate crime, dial 911 if you are in immediate danger. Otherwise call a local detachment’s non-emergency line, visit in person, or use the handy new Online Crime Reporting portal.

Citizens helping police fight rising hate crime levels in Alberta will make the province safer for everyone.

Dan Singleton is an editor with the Albertan,

Dan Singleton

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