FBI Records Spike In Disability-Related Hate Crimes
As hate crimes across the U.S. surge, new data indicates that incidents targeting people with disabilities are up sharply too.
There were 128 hate crime offenses reported during 2017 stemming from bias against those with disabilities, according to the FBI. That’s up from 76 the previous year.
The numbers released this week come from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program, which tallies data submitted by law enforcement agencies across the country on incidents motivated by disability as well as race, ethnicity, ancestry, religion, sexual orientation, gender and gender identity.
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Overall, federal officials said there were 7,175 hate crime incidents in 2017, up some 17 percent from 6,121 the year before.
The report indicates that 1.6 percent of all incidents in 2017 targeted people with disabilities. Those with mental disabilities were affected by 93 of the offenses and 35 targeted people with physical issues.
The uptick in hate crimes prompted by disability bias follows two years of declines in that category.
The FBI noted that the increase in hate crimes coincided with a large jump in the number of law enforcement agencies contributing data to the report. More than 16,000 agencies submitted data for 2017, nearly 900 more than the year prior.