When hate incidents become criminal offences they are known as hate crimes. A criminal offence is something that breaks the law. Some examples of hate crimes include: assaults; criminal damage; harassment; murder; sexual assault; theft; fraud; burglary; hate mail; harassment.
- verbal abuse like name-calling and offensive jokes
- bullying or intimidation by children, adults, neighbours or strangers
- physical attacks such as hitting, punching, pushing, spitting
- threats of violence
- hoax calls, abusive phone or text messages, hate mail
- online abuse, for example on Facebook or Twitter
- displaying or circulating discriminatory literature or posters
- harm or damage to things such as your home, pet, or vehicle
- throwing rubbish into a garden
- malicious complaints, for example over parking, smells or noise
- It is not possible to justify direct discrimination, so it is always unlawful. There are, however, exceptions to further and higher education institutions that allow, for example, single-sex institutions to only admit students of one gender without this being unlawful direct discrimination.
- To show that they have been directly discriminated against, they must compare what has happened to them to the treatment a person without their protected characteristic is receiving or would receive. So, a gay student cannot claim that excluding them for fighting is direct discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation unless they can show that a heterosexual or bisexual student would not be excluded for fighting. A student does not need to find an actual person to compare their treatment with but can rely on a hypothetical person if they can show there is evidence that such a person would be treated differently.
- There is no need for someone claiming direct discrimination because of racial segregation or pregnancy or maternity to find a person to compare themselves to. The former is deliberately separating people by race or colour or ethnic or national origin and will always be unlawful direct discrimination; and for the latter the student must show that they have been treated unfavourably because of the pregnancy or maternity and there is no need to compare such treatment to the treatment of someone who was not pregnant or a new mother.
- It is not direct discrimination against other students to offer a pregnant student special treatment in connection with the pregnancy or childbirth. And it is also not direct discrimination against a non-disabled student to treat a disabled student more favourably.
- You apply (or would apply) the provision, criterion or practice equally to all relevant students, including a particular student with a protected characteristic. and
- The provision, criterion or practice puts or would put students sharing a protected characteristic at a particular disadvantage compared to relevant students who do not share that characteristic, and
- The provision, criteria, practice or rule puts or would put the particular student at that disadvantage, and
- You cannot show that the provision, criteria or practice is justified as a ‘proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim’
Indirect discrimination applies to all the protected grounds other than pregnancy and maternity, although something that disadvantages students who are pregnant or new mothers may be indirect sex discrimination.
- Discrimination by perception is where the conduct or behaviour is based on the perception that an individual has a protected characteristic.
- Discrimination by association is where an individual is treated less favourably because of that person’s association with another individual who has a protected characteristic.