In January 2016, a rock was thrown
through the window of Beechview’s Casa Rasta restaurant. A month earlier, someone tagged the Las Palmas grocery store in Brookline, another South Hills neighborhood, with the phrase “Go back to Mexico.”
In November last year, weeks after the presidential election, a banner posted in front of the First Unitarian Church of Pittsburgh was vandalized.
The banner's message, "Black Lives Matter" was crossed out and changed to "Blue Lives Matter More".
And around that same time, a group of Somali Bantu
youth in Pittsburgh say they were bullied and told, “You are going back to your country; [Donald] Trump is gonna put you in the garbage.”
While these kinds of incidents, motivated by racism, bigotry, homophobia, and xenophobia might seem minimal and infrequent to some, acts of hate and discrimination are very hard to track. While social justice activists and groups monitoring hate organizations say hate crimes and acts of discrimination are on the rise, federal data compiled by the FBI does not tell the whole story. That's partly because, according to Pro Publica
, "more than 3,000 state and local law enforcement agencies don’t report hate crimes to the FBI as part of its annual national survey of crime in America."
In an effort to raise awareness about incidents like these Pittsburgh City Paper
is proud to announce that we have joined Pro Publica’s Documenting Hate Project.
The project is focused on gathering data on hate crimes from law enforcement, nonprofit groups, news reports and social media. Participants are also gathering information on incidents of harassment and intimidation that might not meet the requirements to be considered a criminal offense. Members of the public are invited to share their own experiences using the form on our website which can be found below or by following this link
If you or someone you know has been the victim of a hate crime, harassment or intimidation we want to hear about it.