In December 2022, the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program (UCR) released its annual 2021 Hate Crimes Report, which painted a distressing picture regarding the lack of law enforcement agency participation in the process. The Matthew Shepard Foundation, along with various other community partners, expressed disappointment in the data collection process and the use of incomplete data to support false claims that hate crime incidents across the country were decreasing. This call for clarity resulted in the UCR providing a supplemental hate crime statistics report this week.
The supplemental report includes an analysis of revised hate crime tables, a comparison of datasets from 2020 and 2021, and a look at trends found over the two-year period. The new data provides a clearer picture of the reality faced by marginalized communities, with a total of 10,840 incidents (8,263 in 2020) involving 12,822 victims (11,472 in 2020) reported in 2021. In addition, the examination of hate crime incidents reported by each state in 2020 compared to the new 2021 data set revealed that most states experienced an increase in reports.
As expected, the LGBTQ+ community continues to be targeted at a growing rate, with sexual orientation motivated hate crimes being the second most common bias motivation reported, and gender identity motivated hate crimes experiencing a significant increase compared to 2020.
The Matthew Shepard Foundation will continue to support efforts to improve the accuracy of hate crimes reporting – both by demanding accountability for law enforcement agencies that do not accurately report hate crimes and by supporting efforts to build trust and make reporting accessible to people targeted by hate.
Since July of 2022, the Matthew Shepard Foundation has partnered with Out to Protect to provide their online Hate Crimes Investigations course and LGBT Liaison Academy to first responders across the country. As of March 1, MSF has provided 151 scholarships to officers across the country as we work to improve access to this highly effective training for agencies who are unable to afford it. Learn more about the Out to Protect Training.
For additional data and analysis, read the official FBI Press Release.