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Hate Crimes against the Homeless: Violence Hidden in Plain View

January 25, 2012 Comments off

Hate Crimes against the Homeless: Violence Hidden in Plain View (PDF)
Source: National Coalition for the Homeless

In the past twelve years (1999-2010), the National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH) has documented one thousand, one hundred eighty-four acts of violence against homeless individuals by housed perpetrators. These crimes are believed to be motivated by the perpetrators’ bias against homeless individuals or their ability to target homeless people with relative ease. The documented violence includes everything from murder to beatings, rapes, and setting people on fire. Hate Crimes against the Homeless: Violence Hidden in Plain View is the twelfth annual report documenting violence against homeless persons.

The violence continues, and with twenty-four known deaths, 2010 ranks in the top-five deadliest years for attacks on homeless people in a decade, and with one hundred thirteen attacks, ranks as the fourth most violent year since NCH began tracking the violence in 1999. NCH has found startling data in the number and severity of attacks. However, the reports also acknowledge that since the homeless community is treated so poorly in our society, many more attacks go unreported. Hate crimes against the homeless community is a growing wave in need of public attention.

  • 1,184 reported acts of bias motivated violence have been committed against homeless individuals between 1999-2010.
  • 312 homeless individuals lost their lives as a result of the attacks
  • Reported violence has occurred in 47 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, DC

Our data also suggests that the perpetrators of these attacks tend to be young men and teenage boys. In the twelve year history of our hate crime reports, the vast majority of the attacks against homeless people have been committed by youth as young as nine years old.

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