ESSEX Police is reminding members of the public that hate crime in any form will not be tolerated, following an increase in reported incidents.
There have been 32 reported hate crime incidents since Wednesday, May 24, compared to a normal average of seven a day.
However, there is no evidence to suggest a direct link between the increase and the terrorist attack in Manchester.
Chief Inspector Russ Cole said: “We will not tolerate hate crime in any form and we take all reports seriously.
“Sadly we have seen an increase in reports of alleged hate crime incidents across Essex in the last few days, which mirrors a national trend.
“It is concerning to see this increase, however there is no evidence to suggest this is specifically and directly caused by the tragic events in Manchester.
“We know that hate crime is significantly under-reported and greater awareness and confidence in the police response may have contributed to this rise.
“It is important to let us know about any incidents – whether they take place online or in the street – so that we can do our best to help you. Letting us know gives us a chance to investigate, prosecute offenders and ensure you and your community are protected.
“We also continue to liaise with community leaders from all faiths to discuss any concerns they may have.”
There are several ways in which you can report a hate crime incident.
In an emergency, please call 999.
Call 101 to report all non-urgent cases or report them online at www.essex.police.uk
There are also Hate Incident Reporting Centres across Essex where victims or witnesses can report crimes to specially trained hate crime ambassadors. To find your nearest centre, visit www.essex.police.uk/advice/hate-crime
You can also report incidents via the True Vision website at www.report-it.org.uk
Or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or www.crimestoppers-uk.org