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Hate crime declines in Sweden: report

TT/The Local/rm · 30 Jun 2011, 15:04

Published: 30 Jun 2011 15:04 GMT+02:00

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“We have been saying for several years that here has been a decrease. It is a bit sensitive because public opinion is of the impression that hate crimes are on the up,” said police officer Mikael Ekman, one of the founders of the hate crimes unit at Stockholm police to news agency TT.

In 2010 there were 5,140 confirmed hate crimes, compared to 5,800 in 2009 and 5,900 in 2008.

However, within these figures, the share of islamophobic hate crimes increased with 40 percent while anti-Semitic and homophobic hate crimes went down.

“The increase in islamophobic hate crimes could partly be explained by a series incidents in Skåne County that generated a large amount of reports,” said Klara Klingspor of the council in a statement

Assault and harassment were the most common types of crimes reported in 2010 and the most common motive was xenophobia or racism.

Although Ekman fears that there are probably large numbers of unreported cases that don’t make the statistics, he says that police see a noticeable decline in hate crimes.

“Hopefully this means that something is getting better in society. Hate crimes work like a thermometer, an increase indicates societal disquiet in general. You get more intolerant if you feel badly treated yourself,” Ekman told TT.

Few reports lead to prosecution and Mikael Ekman thinks that the Swedish judicial system lacks knowledge of that type of crime.

Story continues below…

“Police have got much better at this but the prosecutors and courts haven’t kept up with the development,” he said to TT.

According to Ekman it is ignorance that is behind it. Hate crimes are more complicated and require more work and deeper investigations.

“More questions need asking by both the police, the prosecutors and by the courts. And they need to be the right questions,“ he said.

TT/The Local/rm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

15:58 June 30, 2011 by canuk
correction: the number of reported hate crimes has gone down...
16:55 June 30, 2011 by TheLight
Deliberately refusing to hire foreign skilled persons (even when they are education in Sweden) because of their skin color is a HATE CRIME!
18:07 June 30, 2011 by zircon
I see what you mean.
18:16 June 30, 2011 by calebian22
It is your Swedish skill, not your skin color that disqualifies you from work in Sweden. Crying racism, because you speak pig Swedish is a convenient crutch for the weak and lazy of mind, but is complete bs.
19:27 June 30, 2011 by cowboykodp

You must really be joking.

Are you sure you live in Sweden?

It is no secret that ethnicity, race, skin color and a non Swedish name are exactly the reason why many are not hired or given rental leases.

Don't take my word for it, read some reports.

Sweden and Swedes have many, many good qualities, however; they have a long way to go to reach the US and UK levels of social equality.

Come on man, wake up.
19:31 June 30, 2011 by muscle
@calebian22: Yup I agree with you. I hate getting rejected because of lack of swedish language skill, as well, but I do understand that fluency in local language is necessary for making good teams, as it brings informal communication which leads to building of trust within teams.

I hate it when people say that organizations are refusing them because they don't want to hire foreign students! First of all, Sweden needs to think first about it's own citizens. Of course they would prefer to hire their own if in competition they find a Swed and a non-sweden of equal ranking.

Secondly, fluency in local language is necessary for your own good. If you don't gain the trust of other team members in your team, you would not be able to be productive in the long run. A person WILL BE considered alien, if team members are unable to trust him deeply. Here with TRUST i don't mean, like literal trust, but like considering someone as a close friend or something!

3rdly, come on , all of those of us who say it's racism that organizations in Sweden refuse job to non-sweds on language basis. Then why not look at other countries like S.Arabia and other gulf countries? A non-arab can not even get a job without taking some sort of surety from a local guy!!! It's the biggest racist act I have known! Sadly, we muslims are at the forefront to claim some country is racist!
19:48 June 30, 2011 by canuk
IF YOU DONT LIKE IT LEAVE! GO BACK TO WHERE YOU CAME FROM. Just becuase you got a free education here doesnt entitle you to work here...and if you swedish is anything like your english in your post, i wouldnt hire you either.
20:10 June 30, 2011 by jamesblish
Hate crime is a ridiculous categorization. What if two dudes of the same culture and complexion hit each other? What's that, a love crime?
21:05 June 30, 2011 by Swedesmith
Hate is ugly. But throwing down the race card every time things don't go your way isn't much prettier.
21:06 June 30, 2011 by DAVID T
I hate my ex wife
21:18 June 30, 2011 by Grokh
ofcourse it has decreased, all the latest news is about gangs and assassinations.... who is gona risk hating lol
22:35 June 30, 2011 by canam
Alright, alright I need to weigh in here. I am an American, with an undergraduate degree from Canada, a MBA from Handels, and a graduate degree from Stanford (IT). My last name is not Swedish - not even close.

I can't get one single interview after 45 applications in just under 6 mnths, except for McKinsey. I can't even get in the door to have a discussion ABOUT my Swedish (which I know).

So all this bs about "Swede's don't discriminate" - you can all suck it because it is 100% true. I'll see you all back on the other side of a pond shortly after a few more months of this baloney.
23:31 June 30, 2011 by cowboykodp

Its truly a shame that someone like you cannot get a job which would undoubtedly benefit Sweden and its economy.

I have friends here in Sweden who are Dutch. Well qualified and educated like you. They are also in the same boat as you, unfortunately.

Like I said, Sweden is good, not yet great.

And for the immature poster here: there must obviously be reasons why some cannot "go back to where they come from". Maybe they have family ties, children, bills, expenses, etc..
23:41 June 30, 2011 by canam
@CowBoy - Thanks for the comment. What I forgot to mention is that I get REFERRED to these jobs by internal managers who are informally recruiting me, who then pass my information off to HR. Who then send a nice canned email template back stating that they are moving on. No interview however.

I did a funny experiment for those of you who still doubt the process. I have 12 years BD (business development) experience and speak Spanish, French, and intermediate Swedish and Mandarin. I don't list these on my resume usually, however after getting stonewalled I started to add languages. I added Swedish as one of the primary ones. Guess what?

00:34 July 1, 2011 by unseen
@ canuk,

i don't like it and i am not leaving!!! what are you going to do about that?
01:23 July 1, 2011 by Bushyblondehead
If your born good looking like me no problem getting job & I don't know nuthing, heeeh...
01:43 July 1, 2011 by jostein
Hehe, the people that still belive the diatribe of the sweiish state should have thier head examined. We know no more what is happening with hatecrime in sweden after another mouthpiece of reinfeldts regime has made meaningless noice than we did before this nonevent.
05:17 July 1, 2011 by darky
There is no big difference between xenophobia and racism. I always categorize this hatred in 3 forms with increasing magnitude. Xenophobia, Discrimination and racism. It is just a triangle. The fact that hate crimes have not been reported doesn't mean there is no hatred. Swedes will remain who they are. It is just the law that makes these haters remain calm and not that their hatred is lost. Take away the harsh laws against racists, I bet you most will act like the serial killer in malmø. Be deceased haters !
06:05 July 1, 2011 by TheLight
@Darky: You create a bad impression of yourself when you generalize a nation as haters, there are very good Swedes here. You should look more carefully.

Having studied the contents of this forum, the information I find here leads me to suspect that other than ethnicity and countries is origin, there might be more serious reasons why Swedish employers are refusing to accept that foreign skilled persons should be offered an employment.

#7 has just confirmed a very disturbing attitude that I have suspected in the past was responsible for the above stated. Many people here are not happy about foreigners coming here to get education and skills, one way they can react is by ensuring that these skilled persons are unable to find a job after graduation. This is another way of asking students or skilled persons to leave their country. The introduction of Tuition fees is only a surface manifestation of this attitude.

However why they continue to embrace unskilled people such as cleaners and other unskilled professions remains a mystery, hopefully another LOUD fellow such as #7 would help us to unravel this mystery.
07:10 July 1, 2011 by calebian22

Of course I live in Sweden. I struck out about 200 times over the course of 2 years because of my Swedish. I am employed now, because I can now communicate in Swedish. Claiming bigotry on the part of Swedish employers is an easy out for foreigners in Sweden. It places the cause of unemployment soley on the hosts. That is unbelievably unfair to Sweden.

Now, does bigotry exist in Sweden? Yes, of course. I would venture that poor Swedish and being unknown is the reason for high foreigner unemployment pecentages though. Swedes are a cautious people. Look at what happens when a northern Swede applies for a job in southern Sweden. They strike out big time in comparison to applications in their own region. We foreigners need to realize the rules of the game in Sweden. Claiming bigotry is just childish and frankly inaccurate.
10:54 July 1, 2011 by TheLight
@ Celebian22

Thanks for sharing your thought and I hope you are employed in skilled position that matches your interest. Otherwise think twice before casting away your certificates and settling for an unskilled job just because you want to stay in Sweden.

It is no secret that there are are thousands of professional jobs (IT) out there that require only good English and not even an iota of Swedish is required. This is the kinda job that is being referred to on this forum.

It is unfair to assume that every one should be employed in Sweden, but reading the experiences of foreign skilled persons such as Canam raizes concerns about why this kinda stuff happens here when there are tonnes of English jobs advertised here on the local. Comments such as Canuks, may lead one to suspect that a majority here think that you are not entitled to get both education and a job.

Keep ya head up.
11:49 July 1, 2011 by johnny1939
@canam I cannot for the life of me see why you would want to live and work in Sweden. You can make so much more money living and working in the States! Many educated Swedes want to go and work in other countries and many do. Good Luck!
13:29 July 1, 2011 by dstergiou
Full disclosure: I am Greek (living in Sweden), don't speak Swedish, working in IT field (doing exactly what i want to do)

Having said that, my story is like this: I have sent out 100+ CVs. I got approximately 70 canned replies, probably due to the fact that i don't speak Swedish or i don't have a Swedish last name - no idea

I got 20 phone calls, "discussing" on how i could work for a company and not be able to understand Swedish. It didn't work

I got 10 interviews, with 5 of them failing from the first meeting. From the last 5, i got 3 job offers and picked the one i liked

Having said that, i need to say:

1) Keep trying, eventually you will find a job you like

2) I strongly believe it's the employer's right to hire who ever he wants. Crying "i am not hired cause i am not Swedish" is lame
14:59 July 1, 2011 by canam
@ Johnny - Thanks for the well wishers. It was due to my "sambo" of 4 years. I gave her a timeline of 8 mnths for me to find something here, and that is almost up. But I agree - if it wasn't for that reason there is no reason to work here in my case. I love the area and appreciate the lifestyle, but there are other countries that offer similar situations as well.
15:09 July 1, 2011 by calebian22
The light,

It is a skilled job that was similiar to the work that I did before I came to Sweden. Continuing a career path in the same vein post arrival to Sweden, requires Swedish unless one has the fortune to live in a large metro area and can find a company that conducts business in English. I live in the willy wags of Sweden where English speaking companies do not exist.

I just get tired of hearing how bigoted Sweden is, when it is not. Life in Sweden as a foreigner is tough, but we have to integrate. Swedish will open a lot of doors that were closed because of "bigotry."
16:17 July 1, 2011 by Icarusty
Woooo, racism is over! Well done all!
20:59 July 1, 2011 by bcterry
"However, within these figures, the share of islamophobic hate crimes increased with 40 percent while anti-Semitic and homophobic hate crimes went down."

Does this mean that all the jews and gays have been driven out of Malmo?
15:35 July 2, 2011 by Iraniboy
Both good and bad news. I'm sure Swedish authorities can find a solution to stop the increase in Islamophobic part.

Judging from thelocal's forum section, one can conclude that most Islamophobic hate speeches are coimg from non-Swedish western countries who happen to be deeply influenced by their home country media propaganda over the last decade. Sweden surely doesn't have any influence on these institutionalized Islamophobia supported by the governments and the media in North America and Western Europe but they can at least expose these brainwashed immigrants to fair and liberal approaches which may stop them from hating others in a long run.
16:48 July 2, 2011 by Smiling Canuk
I don't get it - Why does anybody still stay in a place for six months or two years if they can't find a job? If I couldn't get a job within two months I'd be out of there ASAP. Mind you, I wouldn't even expect to find a job in Sweden since I don't speak the language.

How do you unemployed support yourselves in Sweden - you must either be going through your savings quite quickly or sponging of your sambo or the Swedish welfare state?
23:47 July 2, 2011 by prince T
Iraniboy. Stop deceiving yourself. Islmaphobia is stronger in Sweden than in any other place. How many skilled muslim workers do you see on high street offices in Stockholm and gothenburg. You will see a lot in UK, US AND canada. I have been to 2 of those countries and sweden cannot compare in any shape or form when it comes to tolerant to muslims. Though it has made it easeir for terorrists to attack them. The kind of comments that Åkesson makes on air here will take him to court in uk but not in My country. Get real Irani boy
07:55 July 3, 2011 by TheLight
Dstergiou: Have you considered the fact that originating from the EU makes you more fortunate than the rest of us in this forum?

That said, this forum has been very rich in knowledge and I'll take with me two major lessons;

1.) We now have individuals in our Milky way galaxy who (for some reasons) have not been raised to put themselves in other peoples shoes or at least empathize with others for a second. This is true except an A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) posted comment #7.

2.) More complex reasons such as the willingness of the Arbetsgivare AND place or origin (originating from outside the EU) are responsible for the tough luck being experienced by foreign people as they search for skilled jobs in Sweden.

But what influences the willingness of the Arbetsgivare??
11:42 July 3, 2011 by Iraniboy
prince T

Seriously I don't understand why people here are talking about employment. I hardly see any concrete connection between hate crime and employment rate. Hate crimes are those action stems from some the comments we see here from some members like wendiver, Uncle, and many others.
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