What is a hate crime?

A hate crime is a criminal offence committed against a person or property motivated in whole or in part by hate, bias or prejudice against an identifiable group. An identifiable group may be distinguished by race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression.

What is hate propaganda?

According to the Criminal Code of Canada, there are two types of hate propaganda:

Advocating genocide

This offence is committed when someone supports or promotes genocide.

Genocide is the intent to destroy in whole or in part, any identifiable group.


  • Killing members of the group;
  • Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring out its physical destruction

An 'identifiable group' means any section of the public distinguished by colour, race, religion or ethnic origin.

Public incitement of hatred

This offence is committed when a person communicates statements in a public place, and incites hatred against an identifiable group that is likely to lead to a breach of the peace.

This offence is also committed when someone communicates statements, other than in a private conversation, that willfully promotes hatred against any identifiable group.

"Communication' includes: words spoken, recorded electronically or otherwise, gestures, signs or other visible representations.

If you are a victim of hate crime:

  • Stay Calm

  • Keep all relevant material

  • Record all information regarding the incident

  • Call the Police immediately!

Hate the Hate -- Report the Crime

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Hate Crime Unit

The Hate Crime Unit is part of Intelligence Services and was established in 1993 to provide support to frontline officers and investigative units throughout the city.

The Unit monitors hate-motivated crime for the purpose of aiding and identifying crimes and criminals and to assist with sentencing at the end of the judicial process.

This is important because Section 718 of the Criminal Code of Canada allows for increased sentences to be considered where there is evidence that a hate-motivated crime has been committed.

Contact Hate Crime Unit

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