We've won a creative and social/content brief from the Thames Valley Police & Crime Commissioner following a pitch. Specifically, the brief is designed to tackle head-on the area of Hate Crime across Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire.

Martin O’Toole, founder of Fist of Fury, said: “Without wishing to sound earnest: Every once in a while, you get a brief that could actually make a real and positive difference to people’s lives. I don’t mean branding or marketing the latest convenience product or app - I mean real shit, which is affecting people in ways that many of us never consider.

There’s clear evidence to show that being targeted because of who you are has a greater impact on wellbeing than being the victim of a ‘non-targeted’ crime. Research also shows that low level hate crimes can escalate quickly if not dealt with early, with victims often being targeted repeatedly (the bully’s mentality). As a number of cases have shown, if not challenged, this escalation can have tragic and sometimes fatal consequences.

All the available research suggests that Hate Crime is hugely under-reported. Mencap, for instance reported that 9 out of 10 people with learning disabilities have been harassed or bullied in the past 12 months (‘Living in Fear’, 2000). Stonewall also have evidence that 3 out of 4 people from Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community do not report hate crime (‘The Gay British Crime Survey’, 2008).

Victims are often reluctant to come forward for fear of attracting further abuse, for cultural reasons, or because they don’t believe the authorities will take them seriously.

Thus, nationally, hate crime is underreported and although locally (in the Thames Valley region) there has has been an increase in reporting over the last year, the PCC still believes that crime figures are not reflecting the true extent of the problem.

So our brief is increase the public’s understanding of what hate crime is and encouraging communities and individuals to report any incidents.

This is a tough brief, as we’ve got to highlight the definition of a hate crime, as well as appeal to the apathy of witnesses, driving them to act and/or report these crimes. All the while, our creative strategy must take into account the sensitive nature of the subject. It’s not a big-budget campaign, but I’m incredibly proud that Fist of Fury is involved with this initiative. Never could stand a bully after all. Cowardly little bastards that they are.”

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