(PM) — Hate crimes against LGBTQ+ people have increased in the last year according to a study released by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino. The nonpartisan research and policy institution stated that in 2018, hate crimes rose 9% in major U.S. cities that they studied. And this change occurs while crime overall in major cities has decreased.
This most modern increase is the fifth consecutive increase in hate crimes year over year in the United States. According to the study, “the most common victims for hate crimes reported to police in major cities in 2018 were African Americans, Jews, and Gays, but Whites and Jews experienced the biggest percentage increase.
To combat this, 47 states as well as other U.S. territories like the Virgin Islands, D.C., and Puerto Rico all have hate crime laws. That said, of those states, less than 36 apply to LGBTQ+ people specifically.
The report also states that “for the first time, a slight majority of hate crime victims now report to the police.” In the past, victims may not have reported due to fear of rejection, and of being ignored, or even out of fear that they themselves may be questioned and in some way accosted by police. While this still continues, there have been some efforts made that have allowed victims to feel more comfortable in reporting crimes to authorities.