The Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations (LACCHR) released its annual account of hate crimes reported throughout Los Angeles County in calendar year 2019. Since 1980, LACCHR has compiled, analyzed, and produced this annual report of hate crime data submitted by law enforcement agencies, educational institutions, and community-based organizations.
To view the complete report, including hate crime maps, graphs and tables, visit hrc.lacounty.gov.
“As stated in my July 21st motion to establish an antiracist policy agenda for Los Angeles County, Black people are disproportionately represented on the low end of several indices of social and economic well-being, including homelessness, COVID-19 fatalities, and joblessness. Sadly, racially motivated attacks are no different. According to the 2019 Hate Crimes Report, Black people were targeted in 47 percent of racial hate crimes, while constituting only nine percent of the County’s population,” said Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. “For those who believe that racism is no longer a problem, I invite you to review the examples this report provides of these vile and cowardly crimes, more than 70 percent of which were classified as violent in nature.”
“LA County has adopted and publicized a number of promising programs to promote inclusion, but the County cannot be fully insulated from the results of the torrent of hatred and intolerance that has emanated from the White House for four long years,” said Supervisor Sheila Kuehl. “I am deeply saddened by this year’s report, including recording the largest number of anti-transgender hate crimes ever, and I am hopeful that new national leadership will put this nation back on track to recognizing every person’s fundamental human rights.”
The report’s significant findings include the following:
• There were 524 hate crimes reported in the County in 2019, a slight increase from the previous year. This is the largest number reported since 2009. For the past six years, hate crimes have been trending upwards.
• The overall rate of hate-motivated violence increased from 61percent to 65 percent, the highest percentage reported since 2007.
• After declining two years in a row, white supremacist crimes jumped 38 percent in 2019.
• Racially-motivated offenses remained by far the largest category, constituting 49 percent of all hate crimes. African-Americans only comprise 9 percent of L.A. County residents but make up 47 percent of racial hate crime victims. African- Americans were also over-represented as victims of sexual orientation and anti-transgender crimes. Latinx as represented 25 percent of racial hate crime victims and were the most likely racial/ethnic group to be victims of violent racially-motivated crime (88 percent). Anti-immigrant slurs were used in 48 percent of anti-Latinx attacks. Crimes targeting Asians and Pacific Islanders increased 32 percent, and anti-Middle Eastern crimes rose from 7 to 17 (an increase of 143 percent).
• Anti-transgender crimes rose 64 percent from 25 to 41, the largest number ever reported. The rate of violence was the highest of any victim group (92 percent).
• 75 percent of racial hate crimes and 32 percent of religious hate crimes were violent.
• Crimes targeting gay men, lesbians, and LGBT organizations comprised 19 percent of all reported hate crimes and 79 percent of these crimes were violent.
• There were 48 crimes in which alleged perpetrators used specifically anti-immigrant language. This is the second largest number of crimes reported with such slurs since this report started tracking xenophobic slurs in 2001.
• Religious crimes rose 11 percent and made up 19 percent of all hate crimes. 89 percent of these crimes targeted the Jewish community, an 8 percent increase.
The Board of Supervisors directed LACCHR to develop an initiative to prevent and respond to hate incidents in the County, which resulted in “L.A. vs Hate.” The initiative has three components: (1) a community-driven marketing campaign to encourage residents and organizations to unite against and report acts of hate; (2) the first government hotline (via 211) for reporting acts of hate and providing assistance to hate victims; and (3) a network of community agencies that provide hate prevention and rapid response services. Since launching in June 2020, “L.A. vs Hate” content has been viewed over 186 million times and has been shared to a social media audience of over 7 million. Calls to 211-LA reporting hate acts have nearly doubled, from 60 in June 2020 to 118 in September.