News : Helpline Launched for Victims of Hate Crimes in Wales
May 12, 2014 -- A new helpline has been launched by the Welsh government in order to tackle hate crimes.
The 1,810 hate crimes reported in 2012-13 were the "tip of the iceberg" and ministers expects to see a rise.
Andrew Davies from Swansea moved house after receiving anonymous homophobic threats for a year and a half.
Mr Davies, chief executive officer for Unity Group Wales, told the BBC that people would push notes under his door, saying they were worried about the safety of their children "because I was gay".
He said: "It got to the point then when they actually killed my cat and sent me a sympathy card for the cat".
"Social media is a fantastic thing when it's used properly... but it's also quite a nasty weapon of hate that is being used a lot more these days".
Communities Minister Jeff Cuthbert will launch the new framework tackling hate crime at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff today. It will include a 24-hour helpline and website for victims.
It will cover all hate crimes, including race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender and age. Victim Support will receive Welsh government funding to run the scheme.
Dr Ahmed Darwish, honorary chair of the Muslim Council of Wales, said to the BBC: "Anything that would encourage the community to help each other is welcome and people need to be able to do that without being intimidated, or fearing retribution.
"The point of the initiative is that people have a means of communication without fear of people looking at them.
"I think the more windows we have, the better it is."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
Today's Tip of the Day - Back To The Basics
Published: Wednesday, May 14, 2014