Chicago Commission on Human Relations
City Services

2017 Hate Crimes Summit


Hate Crimes are on the rise in Illinois[1] and across the country[2]. 2016 saw the highest recorded number of hate crimes since the Chicago Police Department started reporting in 2012.[3]

Hate crimes send a message to our most vulnerable communities that they are not safe and will be targeted for violence while simply trying to live their lives. Illinois has strong hate crimes laws and yet, a number of obstacles make it difficult for victims to find justice.

In Chicago, a coalition of community advocates, government agencies, and law enforcement officials are working to ease the burden on victims by closing loopholes and creating a highly collaborative response to hate crimes.

Join us on  October 25, 2017 for our 2nd Hate Crime Summit: Bridging Systems Against Hate

What:    The Hate Crime Summit is an opportunity to raise awareness regarding hate crimes, address the barriers to reporting hate crimes, provide opportunities for networking, collaboration and study.  Audiences we seek to serve include educators, law enforcement, general community, researchers, and service providers.

Poster presentations will be included, thus persons with an interest in the interdisciplinary understanding and prevention of hate crimes will be invited to participate and submit an abstract for a research poster to display during the Summit.  We will invite both undergraduate and graduate student submissions. 

Who:     The Hate Crime Coalition are individuals who represent the various stakeholder agencies that work to address the issue of hate crimes, in their respective jurisdiction or areas of expertise. Convened by the Chicago Commission on Human Relations (CCHR) since 2011, the coalition has delivered numerous training and educational forums and delivered the 2014 Hate Crime Summit. Current coalition members include:

                         * Chicago Commission on Human Relations

                         * Chicago Police Department, Civil Rights Unit

                         * Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office

                         * FBI

                         * Cook County Sheriff’s Office

                         * Anti-Defamation League

                         * Center on Halsted

                         * University of Illinois at Chicago

                                     - College of Nursing, Alicia Matthews, PhD

                                     - Interdisciplinary Center for Research on Violence, Paul Schewe, PhD

                                     - Title IX Office, Michael Diaz

                                     - Gender and Sexuality Center, Megan Carney

Where: University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), Student Center East, 750 S. Halsted

When:  Wednesday, October 25, 2017, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm

October will mark the eighth anniversary of the Matthew Shepard & James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act that President Obama signed into law in October, 2009.

Proposed schedule:
Registration: 8:00 am – 9:00 am

Keynotes: 9:00 am

Breakout Session I: 10:45 am – 11:45 am

Lunch: 11:45 am (free lunch provided with registration)

Breakout Session II: 12:45 pm – 1:45 pm

Recommendation: 2:00pm – 2:30 pm

Why:     The FBI’s most recent annual report of hate crimes noted an increase in the number of reported hate crimes in 2015.[1]  This increase is particularly alarming as it is widely recognized that what is reported to law enforcement is not reflective of the actual number of hate crimes committed.  Hate crimes cause unique harm, both to the victim and to the many targeted communities.  Effective responses to hate crimes require a clear understanding of the nature of hate crimes and the critical importance of reporting.  The Hate Crime Coalition proposes this Summit in commemoration of the Matthew Shepard & James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act anniversary and because hate crimes continue to increase and be an everyday reality.


[1] , the FBI will release 2016 hate crime statistics November of 2017.

Southern Poverty Law Center’s analysis and the Anti-Defamation League’s analysis