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Webinar on hate crimes provides enlightenment

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Hate crimes webinar was available for students, faculty and staff on Tuesday, Nov. 3 in the Occhiato University Center.

Shane Windmeyer and Greg Miraglia presented the event. They explained the importance of understanding hate crimes and reporting incidents. Windmeyer is the founder and executive director of Campus Pride and Stop the Hate. He is a recognized speaker on college campuses. He also created the Campus Climate Index.

Hate crime means a criminal act committed, in whole or in part, because of one or more of the following actual or perceived characteristics of the victim; gender, disability, nationality, race or ethnicity, religion, and sexual orientation, Wimdmeyer said.

According to the FBI Uniform Crime Report, black males are the most likely hate crime victims, based on race. A gay male is the most likely victim based on sexual orientation. Judaism is the most likely religion to be victimized. The least likely to be a victim are people with a disability.

The Uniform Crime Report Hate Crime Statistics presented data about incidents, offenses, victims and offenders in reported crimes that were motivated in whole or in part by a bias against the victim’s perceived race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation or disability.

Among the single-bias hate crime incidents in 2007, there were 4,956 victims of racially motivated hate crimes. 69.3 percent were victims of an offender’s anti-black bias, the Bureau Uniform Crime report stated.

The report also stated that of the 1,628 victims of an anti-religious hate crime, 69.2 percent were victims of an offender’s anti-Jewish bias.

And of the 1,512 victims targeted due to sexual orientation bias, 58.9 percent were victims of an offender’s anti-male homosexual bias.

Windmeyer and Miraglia encourage student leaders and faculty to address hate crimes the first day in class and encourage implementing the code of conduct within a classroom syllabus.

For more information, visit www.shanewindmeyer.com. His Web site explains he is the national leader in gay and lesbian civil rights and a champion for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender LGBT issues on college campuses.