What is a HATE CRIME?

A hate crime is any criminal offence committed against a person or property which is motivated by hate, bias or prejudice.  
Hate crimes are committed to intimidate, harm or terrify not only a person, but an entire group of people to which the victim belongs. Victims are targeted for who they are, not because of anything that they have done. 
Hate crimes tend to be more violent than other crimes and increase feelings of vulnerability, victimization and fear for everyone. 

What is HATE PROPAGANDA?

Hate propaganda is any communication used that promotes hatred toward a specific group based on race, religion, nationality or ethnic origin. 

  • Advocating Genocide – when someone supports/promotes the intent to destroy in whole or in part, any identifiable group. 
  • Public Incitement of Hatred – when someone communicates statements in a public place that promotes hatred against any identifiable group. 

There are three Hate Propaganda sections in the Criminal Code. 


Section 318. (1) Everyone who advocates or promotes genocide is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years.
Definition of "genocide"
(2) In this section, "genocide" means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy in whole or in part any identifiable group, namely,
(a) killing members of the group; or
(b) deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction.

Section 319. (1) Everyone who, by communicating statements in any public place, incites hatred against any identifiable group where such incitement is likely to lead to a breach of the peace is guilty of
(a) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years; or
(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction.

Section 319. (2) Everyone who, by communicating statements, other than in private conversation, wilfully promotes hatred against any identifiable group is guilty of
(a) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years; or
(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction

If you are a victim of hate crime…

  • Stay calm 
  • Keep all relevant material
  • Record all information regarding the incident
  • Report it immediately to Police

Reporting a Hate Crime

The Hamilton Police Service has a unit specifically mandated to monitor and assist with investigations involving hate crimes.
You can report a hate crime by contacting the Hamilton Police Service at (905)546-4925 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
Reporting a hate crime is an important step in stopping the cycle of hatred and preventing others from being victimized.

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