HC Deb 27 October 2003 vol 412 cc126-7WS
Lady Hermon

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what percentage of crimes committed in Northern Ireland in each year since 1997 were racially motivated; what steps he is taking to reduce these figures; and if he will make a statement. [133189]

Mr. Paul Murphy

It is not possible to provide statistics in the precise format requested. However, the table sets out the number of racial incidents reported to, and the total number of crimes recorded by, the police in Northern Ireland since 1997.

This Government condemns all racially motivated crimes and is committed to tackling such intolerance. Later this year I hope to publish a proposal for a draft Order in Council to enable the courts to deal more severely with crimes motivated by racist, sectarian, and homophobic hatred.

This measure will send out a clear message that racism has no place in our society.

Number of racial incidents reported and total number of crimes recorded in Northern Ireland, 1997–2002/03
Number of racial incidents reported Number of recorded crimes
1997 25 62,222
1998–99 93 109,053
1999–2000 237 119,111
2000–01 260 119,912
2001–02 185 139,786
2002–03 226 142,496


Police Service of Northern Ireland.