Countering Complaints

Report offers recommendations for improving conditions involving hate-crime reporting in D.C.

Concerns raised during a City Council hearing on District hate crimes last year have been taken into account by the Police Complaints Board (PCB) in compiling recommendations regarding the handling and reporting of hate crimes in the city.

The seven-page report, issued Sept. 30 by the PCB, the governing body of the city’s Office of Police Complaints (OPC), was sent to Mayor Adrian Fenty, Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier and the City Council.

The report, ”Monitoring Citizen Complaints that Involve Police Response to Reports of Hate Crime,” offers three recommendations for improving conditions involving hate-crime reporting in the District.

The PCB recommends that the MPD and OPC work together in developing a system that addresses concerns of ”inadequate police response”; that the mayor’s office should publish an annual summary of hate-crimes data collected by the MPD and share this information with the City Council; and MPD should address community concerns about police responsiveness to hate crimes ”to ensure that all constituencies covered by the D.C. Bias-related Crimes Act receive education and outreach, particularly groups for whom hate crimes data suggests underreporting.”

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