Manchester City Council has released a statement condemning the rise in hate crime in the city following the EU referendum, saying ‘racists and thugs’ are not welcome.
Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, made the statement after a 50% rise in reported hate crime, including a high profile incident on a tram which gained national attention.
Sir Richard said: “Ours is a city which has always welcomed non-native Mancunians and respected the contribution they make to our economy, our public services – especially the NHS, in which many work – and the general vibrancy of the city.
“The people who are most definitely not welcome are the racists and thugs who do not abide by the values of this great city and make no positive contribution”.
Greater Manchester Police recently confirmed a rise in reported hate crime in the city, but refused to link the rise with any particular event.
Sir Richard stated that, while the increase had occurred following the referendum, he believed ‘the majority of those who voted Leave are not racist bigots’ and would also condemn hate crime.
He went on describe Manchester as ‘an inclusive, international city’, adding that: “We will work closely with Greater Manchester Police to ensure our communities continue to feel safe and that those who spout poison are brought to justice and appropriately punished”.