According to a crime rates statistics report recently released by the California Department of Justice, hate crimes have risen by more than 17% across California in the last year. In response, today the Board of Supervisors passed a motion, authored by Supervisor Hilda L. Solis and co-authored by Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, which would establish best practice policies on hate crime investigation and reporting, and expand existing resources for victims.
“With hate crimes against Latinos, LGBT, African-Americans, and other minority groups on the rise, it’s more important than ever for LA County to do everything in our power to combat the tide of hate, bigotry, and prejudice,” said Supervisor Solis. “We are proud that LA County is one of the most culturally diverse places on earth. It is our diversity and our deep appreciation for inclusivity and equity that makes Los Angeles County one of the best regions to live, work, and visit. Upholding our collective values, we will never remain silent or passive when confronted by hate, discrimination, bullying, or harassment.”
In May 2018, the California State Auditor released an audit report on the implementation of hate crime laws in California. The audit showed underreporting and under-response from law enforcement regarding hate crimes. With incidents of hate violence and hate groups rising throughout the nation, this motion begins a collaborative process for the LA County Sheriff’s Department and other local law enforcement agencies to consider these findings, assess their own performance in addressing hate crimes, and align with best practice standards by taking action to strengthen their response, reporting, and outreach.
“The latest hate crimes reports show that the numbers of these crimes continue to rise, which makes it even more important for law enforcement agencies to do everything they can to identify, report and respond to hate crimes,” said Supervisor Kuehl. “At this historical moment, we have to do everything we can to counter and stand up against intolerance and hate.”
This motion direct County departments, led by the Office of the Inspector General, to determine if the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department’s hate crime policies and procedures are utilizing best practices. County departments will work to develop hate violence prevention strategies. This motion also directs the County to develop a strategy around a multi-year public outreach anti-hate campaign.
Earlier in the Board meeting, Supervisor Solis recognized the Trans Wellness Center, Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations, and the Hate Violence Prevention Partnership among Bienestar, Brotherhood Crusade, California Communities For Equality and Justice, and the Muslim Public Affairs Council, for their impactful work to reduce and prevent hate crimes.
Today’s action marks the 29th immigration motion Supervisor Solis has authored to protect, defend, and fight for the rights of immigrants since the 2016 presidential election. Her efforts include a motion to create sensitive locations throughout the County, a $3 million dollar contribution to the LA Justice Fund, and the creation of the first-ever County Office of Immigrant Affairs. To view a complete list of these actions, please click here.