Ottawa police see 33 per cent increase in hate crime reports so far in 2021

The Ottawa Police station on Elgin Street is seen in Ottawa, on Monday, Feb. 1, 2021. (Justin Tang/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Ottawa police are reporting a 33 per cent increase in reported hate crimes in Ottawa so far this year.

The newly released semi-annual hate crimes data shows police have received 105 hate crime reports in Ottawa this year, compared to 79 cases over the same period last year.

As well, the Ottawa Police Hate and Bias Crime Unit has determined that 73 reported incidents were hate motivated, an increase of 26 per cent from 2020.

"A hate crime is a criminal offence committed against a person or property which is motivated by hate/bias or prejudice based on race, national or ethnic origin, disability, sexual orientation, or other similar factor," said police in a statement.

Ottawa police say the most serious hate crime violations this year are:

  • Mischief to property
  • Mischief Hate (culture/religion based)
  • Threats/utter to person
  • Assault with a weapon

Police say the groups most victimized are:

  • Black
  • Jewish
  • LGBTQ+
  • Arab and West Asian
  • Catholic

Ottawa Police received 182 hate crimes reports in 2020, up from 116 cases reported in 2019.

If you or someone you know has been a victim of a hate-motivated crime, please report it to the Ottawa Police Hate and Bias Crime Unit at 613-236-1222, ext. 5015 or online.

The Ottawa Police Service re-established its hate crime unit in January 2020, which allowed police to specifically focus on hate-motivated incidents.