Daventry council motion condemns hate crimes

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Councillors condemned hate crime, racism and xenophobia in a motion passed last Thursday evening.

The motion was put to a full meeting of Daventry District Council by Conservative councillors Alan Hills and Colin Poole.

Introducing the motion Cllr Hills amended it, saying there had now been a small increase in hate crime incidents in Northamptonshire, but not in the Daventry district.

The motion stated that councillors were proud to live in a tolerant and diverse country, that racism, xenophobia and hate crimes have no place in out society, and that DDC ‘condemns these unequivocally’.

Cllr Hills said the council should work with its partner groups and organisations to ensure there is the support and resources to tackle such crimes.

He stated: “We must not allow hate to become acceptable.”

The motion ended by stating everyone living in the area is a valued member of the community.

An second motion was put forward by Labour councillors Ken Ritchie and Wendy Randall with much the same wording, but including a line calling for the council to set up a cross-party working group with representatives from the town council and minority communities, to ‘prepare proposals on the practical steps’ that could be taken to promote ‘harmony and understanding between communities’.

Cllr Ritchie said it was not enough for DDC to condemn hate crime and tackle its consequences, but it should work to eliminate the root causes of the problem by bringing communities together through activities which bring different peoples together.

Cllr Millar said he feared a cross-party working group would become a talking shop, and other councillors suggested groups like the community safety partnership might be better suited to deal with the topic.

The Labour motion was defeated.