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Last Updated: Sunday, 22 August, 2004, 08:10 GMT 09:10 UK
Help for victims of hate crime
Victims of hate crime in the Avon and Somerset area are being encouraged to come forward.

The force has launched an initiative called True Vision to help people who are afraid to report incidents.

Police say such crimes are motivated by hatred for a person's gender, race, religion, disability or sexuality.

Posters and information packs are being distributed in public places and with support groups like the Racial Equality Council and Terence Higgins Trust.

Diversity officer Pc Martha Spikes said: "Hate crime is recognised as one of the most under reported crimes and can have a devastating effect on those being targeted.

"With the design of these packs we aim to cut out the stress of trying to visit a police station or even making a phone call.

"If you have been the victim of any hate crime, you just have to fill out the form and send it back to us."

The initiative is backed by the Home Office and already runs in 23 forces throughout England and Wales.

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