The report states that the record increase is driven by better reporting to police forces, but also by genuine spikes in hate crime following the EU Referendum and Westminster Bridge terror attack.
While recent police figures have shown that short-term rises following major national and global events do quickly subside, these latest statistics are a concern for police and wider society.
National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead for Hate Crime, Assistant Chief Constable Mark Hamilton said:
“Following the EU Referendum and Westminster terror attack which generated short-term spikes in hate crime, police forces are reaching out to all communities to monitor and respond to tensions, offer reassurance, and strengthen bonds.
“It is more important than ever that we stand united in the face of hatred, so police forces are making themselves more visible and accessible to local communities to ensure victims or anyone feeling vulnerable has the confidence to come forward. Police have improved the reporting procedures across forces, but we can do better at securing convictions – we need anyone who has been a victim of hate crime to report the abuse and the abuser to police to make sure these offenders are brought to justice.
“This is still an under-reported crime, particularly when it comes to crimes committed online, so I will be working alongside the Government to strengthen our nationally co-ordinated response to hate crime.
“Today’s figures also show increases in reporting and recording of sexual orientation and disability hate crimes and we must build on this progress – nobody should have to face hatred because of who they are.”
The Home Office release of annual hate crime statistics for year ending March 2017 can be found here.