POLICE have opened contact points in Kirklees to help victims to report racist or homophobic crimes.
The plan to launch hate incident reporting centres in Kirklees aims to encourage the reporting of such incidents at places other than police stations.
There were 421 racially motivated incidents and 17 homophobic crimes reported to the police in Kirklees from April to December last year. But it is thought that many more incidents went unreported.
Police believe victims of hate crimes often feel uncomfortable entering a police station to report incidents.
The police hope the introduction of reporting centres in community centres, Victim Support offices and Kirklees housing offices will offer a less threatening environment in which people can discuss crimes committed against them.
The initiative comes as a result of a close working partnership between Huddersfield and Dewsbury police, Kirklees Racial Equality Council and Kirklees Council.
Insp Charlie Glass, West Yorkshire Police Force's community and race relations officer, said: "We would still urge the public to report hate incidents to the police directly. However, we recognise this is not always possible.
"The important thing is that they are reported."