Racist leaflets delivered to homes in Ipswich
PUBLISHED: 07:30 11 November 2020 | UPDATED: 08:44 11 November 2020
A councillor has denounced the delivery of racist leaflets to homes in Ipswich as “appalling and unacceptable”.
Ipswich Borough councillor Sarah Barber said distribution of the leaflets, which advertise an online book store and make reference to anti-Islamic books, was “really upsetting” for residents.
The leaflets have been delivered to homes in the Nacton area of Ipswich over the last month and police have launched an investigation.
Mrs Barber, Labour councillor for Priory Heath ward, said: “I can’t believe that in 2020 I’m having to talk about it, but it is unacceptable and appalling behaviour.
“It’s really upsetting for people to get this stuff through their door and I can’t believe that people are putting this hateful literature out there.”
Mrs Barber urged anyone affected to report incidents to the police or the council.
“I would encourage people to report it to the police in the first instance and they can also let their councillor know about it, because it’s important that the council is aware,” she added.
MORE: Racist stickers found on streets of Ipswich
At a virtual meeting held last week, Inspector Soraya Francis, from Suffolk police, told Ipswich Borough Council’s south east area committee that enquiries are continuing.
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“We’ve had quite a big increase in deliveries in the Nacton area of leaflets which have a racial element to them, advertising an online book store with reference to anti-Islamic books,” she said.
“They haven’t targeted any specific persons, it is a leaflet drop to many houses and we’ve had several of these over the last month or so.
“We currently have no known offenders at this time and we’re continuing with enquiries to identify them if we can with some sort of forensics.”
In February, stickers bearing white supremacist messages were posted across Ipswich.
Ipswich Borough Council worked to remove the stickers which were posted on lampposts and bus shelters in the town.
MORE: ‘Bigoted few’ behind rise in hate crime across Suffolk since lockdown
News of delivery of the leaflets comes after recent statistics showed a rise in hate crime across Suffolk.
In the six months to the end of September, police recorded 559 crimes – a 31% increase on the previous six months and a 16% rise on the same period of 2019.
Police said most related to racially motivated hate crime – and that many incidents were still going unreported.
The five strands of hate crime are race or ethnicity, religion or belief, sexual orientation, disability and gender identity.
Any offence with a xenophobic element, such as graffiti targeting certain nationalities, can also be recorded as race hate crimes.
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