U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

A Whole Community Approach to Hate Crime Reduction: Research to Improve Prevention, Reporting, and Victim Support

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Awardee County
New York
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $665,999)

Problem: Hate crimes are a growing problem in the United States but remain widely underreported. Community-based organizations (CBOs) can be instrumental in crime prevention and response, leveraging their local legitimacy and knowledge. Yet, their approaches may not be tailored to hate crimes specifically. Moreover, their efforts may be disconnected from those of other CBOs and law enforcement.

Goals and Objectives: This project will study how CBOs and their cross-agency coordination with government can innovatively and proactively reduce hate crime perpetration. Specifically, CBOs offer a channel for reporting hate crimes. Second, CBOs can provide support to victims and communities affected by hate crimes. Third, CBOs can coordinate strategies with other CBOs and law enforcement to increase their impact and hold offenders accountable, including via community-based alternatives to traditional prosecution.

Approach: Using a participatory action framework and NYC as a case study, CUNY Institute for State and Local Governance, Rutgers University, and Florida International University will identify specific mechanisms communities can use to prevent and address hate crimes. A Community Advisory Group will guide the project. We will also hire and train a community researcher; embed a researcher in community sites; and conduct community discussions to translate project findings. Partners include seven local CBOs, the NYC Office for the Prevention of Hate Crimes, the Safe Horizon Crime Victim Assistance Program, and the Bronx District Attorney’s Office.

Three complementary workstreams will achieve the project objectives: (a) a landscape scan to identify gaps in reporting and response (b) mapping hate crime victim pathways; and (c) examining CBO strategies and their partnerships in addressing hate crimes. Five mixed methods will support these workstreams: administrative data analysis on hate crimes and response; interviews with victims, community members, service providers, and law enforcement; structured observations of community approaches; review of related materials; and a social network analysis to assess current coordination and gaps.

Impact: The project will document a practical model for hate crime collaboration in NYC and develop recommendations to strengthen this work nationally. It will both improve the data infrastructure for tracking hate crime reporting and response across CBOs and law enforcement while also developing systematic knowledge of the perspectives of victims and CBOs in hate crime responses. Project results will be shared via community discussions; policy briefs; webinar, presentations, and derivative materials; social media/infographics; and data dashboards. We will also develop a technical summary report and at least three academic journal manuscripts. CA/NCF

Date Created: September 27, 2023